Tulip Design

Affordable custom design and stitching

All classes are held at our studio in Saint Paul, near Hwy 280 and University Ave.  Most classes held Saturday mornings, but other times are available.  We try to keep class sizes to 3-6 people so students get plenty of one on one attention. ** While we used to offer classes regularly, they are now only available by request due to an abundance of other work.  Please contact us if you are interested in a class**

In addition to group classes we do individual lessons for $20 per hour.  

We start classes for the general public (adults or children) as needed; as soon as three or more people show interest.

We have also done costume history classes - again, we don't do them regularly anymore but can do them again upon request if more than three people are interested.



$30 for one session, three to four hours long.  Learn to read a commercial pattern, choose fabrics, thread a machine, and do a straight stitch.  You will make a basic pillow case.  Best for students who have never sewn anything before.


BEINNING SEWING - four sessions

Make a pair of pants and a simple dress; learn to read patterns, take measurements, cut out fabric, sew on a machine, make waistbands, sleeves, darts, and pleats.  Four 3 to 4-hour sessions for $120 (includes all materials except fabric, unless you prefer to make your garments using leftovers from our other projects).  Bring your machine, or use one of ours.  See syllabus below.  For students who have very little sewing experience (if you want to learn to thread and use your own machine for the first time, please come 15-30  mn. early).



Learn to alter a basic pattern and make a fitted garment; learn how to work with and finish a variety of fabrics; learn various gathering and pleating techniques.  Zippers and buttonholes.  Four 3-hour sessions for $120 (includes all materials except fabric).  Sessions start as soon as we have enough interest from 3 or more people.



Very informal, lots of fun!  Need at least five students.  $155 for six lectures, plus three field trips to see actual historical garments behind the scenes at local museums.  One evening per week, or Saturdays - we will begin as soon as we have at least five students signed up!  See syllabus below. 





Week One:

Skills learned        

taking measurements
            reading patterns
            basic machine use
            cut out pajama pants

Materials used        
2 yds. of cotton or flannel (no large or complicated prints, no knits, no fleece)
Thread to match

Week Two:        

Skills learned        Straight stitching, forward and backward

           Sew pants

Week Three and Four:        

Skills learned        

            Make a simple dress or top for pajamas

Materials used        3 yards of cotton or flannel (no knits, no fleece)


History of Costume

FORMAT: nine sessions, 90 minutes (1 ½ hours) each, one evening per week.  Six lectures given at our shop in St. Paul, two visits to the Goldstein Gallery at the UofM, one at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. 5+ students.  Very informal – lecture with photos, some activities.  No homework or tests – this is supposed to be fun!

COST:  $155 for the whole course.  This includes facilities and field trip costs.  
CONTENT: A brief chronological overview of European and American clothing and its context up to 1970.  In addition to images and descriptions of the clothing itself, we will discuss the garment industry, world events, social conditions affecting dress, and the ways we can learn about a society from it’s clothing.  Special emphasis will be placed on the way women’s history can be read through fashion.  Comparisons will be made to the art and architecture of each period.  No previous knowledge expected.

STUDENTS: You do not need any previous knowledge of history to attend!  The class structure is very informal and students will come with a wide variety of ages and experiences.  Students may include teachers who want more background information, students (high school or college) interested in a more aesthetic approach to history; fashion and theatrical costume designers looking for inspiration; art history students looking for a different way to view the aesthetics of various periods; people of all ages looking for a fun way to meet new people; and anyone else interested in history and fashion.

MATERIALS: None required –  Optional texts for background reading include:

 1)    Fashion: A history from the 18th to the 20th Century.  The collection of the Kyoto Costume Institute .  Published by Taschen, available at www.taschen.com, or sometimes at the bookstore of the MIA.  Many copies also available on amazon, ebay, etc.   Excellent images – more a museum catalog/magazine than a textbook.  Has the feel of a very large fashion magazine that includes full page photos from many centuries.  Usually about $10 online  - HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!!  Any edition is fine.
2)    Survey of Historic Costume by Tortora.  Published by Fairchild.  Any edition will do – very commonly used textbook – it’s okay, but not great.  Small black and white images only; the text is more useful than the images. 

TEACHER:  Has been designing and making historical costumes since 1995.  She has degrees in History and Theater.  She taught costume history and gave tours at the History Museum of Vienna, Austria for two years, and also worked at the Goldstein Gallery of Design in St. Paul.  She is currently working on her Master’s Degree in Apparel with a focus on Costume History.  


1)    Introductions, brief overview of clothing from Rome and Greece to 1770
Brief overview of the production of clothing and textiles

2)    a) 1770-1800
The French Revolution

The Industrial Revolution: new ways of producing clothing
Marie Antoinette and Empress Josephine
b) 1800-1820
Empire fashion: philosophy of simplicity
End of rapid change in men’s fashion
Jane Austen books

3)    a) 1820-1860
Romantic / Biedermeier fashion
Return of extreme physical restriction in women’s dress
Early Queen Victoria
Charles Dickens books
Revolutions in Europe: women expressing political opinion through dress – clothing from the 1848 revolutions (ie: Les Miserables), Greek independence, Austrian Empire revolutions.

4)    1860-1890
Victorian/Civil War fashion
Empress Elisabeth of Austria
Empress Eugenie of France
Early US Women’s movement
Westward migration in the US (pioneers)

Corsets, bustles, crinolines, hoopskirts, etc.

5)    FIELD TRIP to Goldstein Museum of Design

Private viewing of actual historical costumes from the 18th and 19th centuries

Review of 19th century fashion
Analysis of objects from the Goldstein collection (You get to touch things with white gloves :))

Activities based on past classes.

6)    1890-WWII
Edouardian fashion
Klimt and Floege: dress reform
Suffragettes / women’s lib/flappers

The Titanic

New film industry

The Great Depression
Both World Wars

 7)    FIELD TRIP to the Minneapolis Institute of Arts
Tour, focusing on 19th-20th century fashion in artwork.

Comparison of painting and fashion; how did artists perceive the clothing they saw before color photography was available?

8)    1945-1970
Idea of the teenager

Modern fashion designers

Disposable clothing

Rebellion through fashion – hippies, Vietnam, etc.
New technology and fabrics

9)    FIELD TRIP to Goldstein Museum of Design

Private viewing of 20th century artifacts

Review of 20th century fashion
Analysis of objects from the Goldstein collection (you get to touch things :))

Activities based on past classes.