Sewing Student Testimonials

Mui Ying K.

I was Sumie's student in NYC. My dream was to be a fashion designer, but the only problem was that I had no technical knowledge or skill in fashion designing. Taking classes with Sumie changed all that.

Sumie is one of the best teachers I've ever had. She is patient, organized, insightful and most importantly, she listened to me.  She has an intuitive understanding of my strengths and weakness as a student and then tailored the classes to fit my specific needs & comfort level.

From her, I learned sophisticated sewing techniques such as the French seam, making bias tape and draping. She even taught me how to sketch professionally on croquis and shared her vast knowledge and expertise on fashion marketing and business.  She encouraged me to launch my own swimwear line!

She is truly a wonderful teacher-highly recommended.


Kay W.

I took classes with Sumie when she was still in NY at her Long Island City location.  I really appreciated her patient instruction.  Her attention to detail and her desire to see me do my absolute best were motivations in themselves.  She also has a warmth and sincerity that endears her to you.  

I began taking classes with Sumie because it was a long held desire of mine to learn how to sew.   Since my teens, I had been promised instruction by others who never followed through.  When I saw the quality of Sumie's work, I decided that she was the one to teach me.  I had made the right choice.  It was a pleasure to be taught by Sumie.

Since her departure from NY, it has been a challenge to find someone that teaches quality sewing for the reasonable price that Sumie charged.  I miss Sumie so much.  I will be flying to California later this year to take as many classes as I possibly can in a week.

I can say with complete confidence that anyone taking classes with Sumie will produce quality work and make a friend in the process.


Alex H.

Sumie is a rare find. She is a true master at design and sewing AND a gifted, passionate teacher. Teaching is a calling for her and combined with a calm, compassionate and kind personality I feel lucky to have found her.

She has a degree in fashion design, worked for a major luxury fashion brand in NY and has been designing her own fashion and accessories line all along. I would describe her own designs edgy, fashion forward haute couture but she will work with you on any project desired.

Being a real life designer she is a fashion industry insider and knows how to source everything cheaply from fabric to zippers to threads. She offers walking tours through the LA and NY garment districts where she shows her students her favorite stores.

No matter what level you are at Sumie will be able to help you go further especially if you want to go beyond the 'home sewer' look :) or if you are an aspiring fashion designer she can guide you with her vast experience.

I started sewing a few months ago and as an adult never having sewn before was kind of intimidated, but now feel confident I can go far with Sumie's help.


Princess S.

When I saw Sumie Tachibana advertising that she was hosting private lessons or small group lessons for a discount per more than 2 people I called her and I was surprised by the quality of her instructions.  For one, she provided a full portfolio of her work.  She's a couture designer and only makes custom orders for her collection, but the beauty and the delicacy in her garment is like no other.  I'm a big fan of Victorian-era clothing, as well as goth and comic/manga style clothing and I found that she was making clothing that crossed every boundary.  

My lessons were about things I wanted to wear and use.  I wanted to make a pair of jeans that fit me and I made it.  She showed me how to make my own pattern and in the process she would confirm that I was understanding and remembering every step for my next project.  

In the years I've been her student I had not only the opportunity to wear everything I made, but I participated in 2 of her fashion shows during Fashion Week, something very few people get a chance to do as a student.  Not only do I drape and make the paper patterns, but every little tailoring detail, from the cutting and the testing of the matching pattern pieces is already second nature to me.  

Sumie is a wonderful instructor, extremely meticulous, very generous and NEVER yells or belittles the students.  She in facts finds alternative ways to illustrate a point in the lesson the student is lacking.  She's a true instructor with compassion, a very soft spoken person with a very firm and confident personality that pushes the students to her or his most.  Whenever I saw a photo in a magazine and simply wished I could wear that interesting garment, Sumie showed me how to look at the design, plan the pattern to the very execution.  

If you're a student, fashion intern, a person like me who can't find anything that fits your body at the store, someone who wants to learn to make clothing, sew, make patterns and get treated like a human being in the process, then Sumie Tachibana is the right teacher for you.