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"Nothing beats seeing the smile of a satisfied client!"

Marthe Mania,

South Africa.

Let me first say that I absolutely love your academy!

I have been sewing since I was 12/13 (I'm 39 now). My mother had sewing machines at home, and so I taught myself basically. I did Home Economics at high school, which included some sewing. After high school, I wanted to study fashion design. I enrolled at a college, but my parents could not afford it, so I had to drop out after 3 months. But the little I learned there helped me get started on my understanding of pattern-making. I then spent a lot of time reading everything I could find on fashion design, pattern-making and sewing from our local library. It taught me more. I practiced all the time making clothes for anybody who would let me, including my sisters' dolls!

YouTube, Pinterest and Google are my favorite places for learning. I have taught myself a lot of things in that way. And it is through one of those channels that I stumbled across your work. My work has improved consistently through the years, but I am always eager to learn more!

I have made my own wedding dress (2013) and both my sisters' wedding dresses (2013 & 2018), as well as a couple of other wedding dresses. I have made bridal parties' attires and evening dresses. I make shirts, especially for my husband. I am now starting to try my hand at making underwear!

What motivates me about my work? I ENJOY IT! It's my happy place! It relaxes me after a long day's hard work (I do have a regular job). And the fact that I am self-taught encourages me to challenge myself all the time and master a new technique! The other motivation is that my hipline is ALWAYS at least one size bigger than my waistline. I am a curvy (hourglass figure), African woman! And so custom-made clothing is a bit of a necessity for me! I don't really enjoy having to make alterations to commercially-bought clothing. But nothing beats seeing the smile of a satisfied client when they put on their finished garment! That feeling is extremely satisfying!

Marthe also makes cakes and does event decor. For more works, visit her website -

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