ALL ABOUT ME
Let me teach you how to create swimming costumes and swimming accessories.
HOW IT ALL BEGAN…
I set up Felixstowe Sewing School by the sea in Suffolk in 2013 having taught Food and Textiles Technology in Suffolk schools for about 15 years. I’ve written sewing tutorials for magazines, blogs, run Vintage Dressmaking festivals and been busy bringing up a family. I found myself in my 50th year looking for some new challenges. Meeting a very experienced open water swimmer on one of my dressmaking classes led to being invited to try sea swimming. I had always enjoyed being in the water but didn’t have a competitive swimming background at all. A little intimidating but why not give it a go! I loved it and from there started challenging myself to longer swims in seas, lakes, rivers and lidos. There was a problem however. Being a plus size person with a yearning for bright colours, training costumes and individuality, it seemed very difficult trying to find a swimming costume that fit me and reflected my personality. I also had set myself the target of swimming a 10K sea marathon on my 52nd birthday and thought I deserved a fabulous costume in which to swim my swim. The first swimming costumes started to be made, patterns became altered and techniques developed for making well fitted, fun, individual swimming costumes for myself. Folk started asking me if I would make them swimming costumes – of course! Isn’t it funny how life can present opportunities? I answered a question posed by a lady on Facebook about repairing a much beloved swimming costume and people started asking me if I taught swimming costume making. The rest isn’t quite history as it’s still in its infancy but my, it is so exciting.
I’ve managed to blend my love of teaching folk how to sew, with making swimming costumes and encouraging people to take up the sport and feel fantastic whilst doing it. It feels as if open water swimming is such a huge part of my life now and I have set myself some pretty mighty targets – including swimming to France from England as part of a relay team, competing in Ice Swimming Championships and finishing quite a few open water marathon events. The world of outdoor swimming has presented me with so many fresh ideas for sewing for swimming – which happens to be the name of my lovely Facebook group. I want to fill this site with opportunities for you to develop your sewing skills and become excited about making your own kit!
You can attend a sewing course with me at Felixstowe Sewing School. You can access an on-line course to learn to make your own swimming costume and swimming accessories. You could come along to one of my mobile swimming costume workshops – held around the UK with beautiful opportunities for swimming. You can commission me to make a swimming costume for you.