Becoming a Professional Seamstress – Part 1

Many women aren’t enjoying routine work these days and are earning less what they feel they should. They’re looking for a new career and to start a new professional journey in a line of work they feel is better suited to them and that they are more passionate about. If you like the idea of becoming a professional seamster, there are various options to you.

It only makes sense to inform yourself of the career and education roadmap ahead of you, however, when your passion guides you to a new career. Firstly, you can absolutely earn a living through sewing by becoming a professional seamstress. It’s a job that tends to rely on referrals so it’s key to start building a client base that you can rely on as early as possible. You’d be learning on the job, working alongside experienced seamstresses or by taking sewing and alteration classes.

You’d need to build a portfolio of your finest work. You also might want to give some thought o optional certification. Finally, you should possess certain skills, such as customer service, manual dexterity, creativity, attention to detail, and, of course, the ability to use sewing equipment.

Learning to sew

This is the all-important first step on your way to becoming a professional seamstress. There are numerous ways you can go about achieving this. Many seamstresses, for example, choose to start by studying books to educate themselves on the basic strategies and techniques.

Another way would be to browse the Internet and benefit from the free resources found online, including tutorials, downloadable patterns, and videos, or simply enrolling on beginner-level sewing classes at your local community centre.

Earning certification

To perform more complicated tasks, you would be well advised to seek out a vocational programme or community college that provides advances textile and sewing courses that include fitting and alteration, garment construction, and pattern making on their syllabus.

By being formally trained, you would be learning concepts related to contemporary sewing, professional sewing, pattern selection, and fabric choice. Upon completion of one of these courses, you’d earn either a certificate or a diploma, which would show employers that you’re qualified to do the job.

In order to secure work, you’d need a portfolio to show off your work and talent. You should include photos of original pieces or altered items of clothing. You could start putting your portfolio together while at school and should add to it throughout your career.

While you don’t technically need certification in this field, by going out and securing a certificate through your own free will, it will help distinguish you from other applicants. One option would be The Master Sewing and Design Professional certification which is offered by the Association of Sewing and Design Professionals. The programme assesses all applicants in seven key categories and includes such advanced sewing techniques as professional practices, fit, proportion, and texture.


Beginner seamstresses tend to work for a professional to gain experience in advanced sewing techniques and alterations. Apprenticeships are sometimes available, although these are rare, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.