Sewing Summer Camp – Memories to Last a Lifetime

Create Lasting Friendships & Beautiful Keepsakes – The friends you make at summer camp are never quite the same as your school friends. For some reason those “camp” friends are put into a special category unlike the friends you spend your time with 75% of the year. At sewing summer camp the friendships created are special because of the common goal, creating something handmade & beautiful. Together with your camp friends your children are going to learn how to make things that you’re going to want to keep around. The soft, adorable projects are going to be keepsakes for many years to come.
 
Your child will learn skill that will last a lifetime – Patience & Teamwork – Of all the things a child will learn at sewing summer camp, we believe that patience and teamwork are the two most important skills. Learning to sew is one of those things that requires a student to stay focused to get the end result, a finished, awesome project. Each project that your child will make usually requires about 2-3 hours of continuous work to finish.  At sewing camp, this time flies by because are students love what they are doing and they are motivated by wanting to finish and have that awesome new toy, piece of clothing or accessory to take home with them. We see our students take their time, make mistakes, go back and fix them and slow dow to achieve the finished project they desire. If that’s not patience, we’re not sure what is. The other really important skill we see students walking away from sewing camp with is a new found appreciate for team work. Even though each child is making their own project in most cases, the process is one that requires help from the entire community. Maybe someone isn’t sure how to hand sew their button eyes, or a student requires their peers help getting the thread into the needle. Sewing camp fosters a true sense a community that you’re not going to find at all summer camps.
An Opportunity to get creative &  Try Something New – Sewing summer camp is a chance to try something that is totally new. Something completely different from what you learn in school. Sewing is an art form that surrounds our day to day, yet most people don’t know how to to do it. Sewing is essential for every piece of clothing, home furnishing and accessory we wear & use every day, but it’s something most people have no clue how to do! At sewing camp your child will get back to basics and have a better understanding of where their belongings come from. Learning how to sew at camp will also foster creativity skills that maybe they are not utilizing during the school year. Learning to sew requires making design decisions about the projects you create. What should the eyes look like on the stuffed panda? Where should I place the pockets of the skirts I’m designing? Which buttons should I use for this closure? Summer camp is an opportunity unlike any other summer program. 
 

Sewing allows for Problem Solving, Fine Motor Skills & Practical use of Math Skills – Now lets not forget about the all the technical & academic skills that kids are going to learn at a sewing camp. Yes, I said academic. If you want to find a hobby that uses math skills in a practical way they can use their whole life, sewing is that skill. Whether it’s measuring how much webbing to cut for a bag strap or how wide to make a hat opening (geometry of a circle at it’s finest!) the math they will learn is so engrained in the project your child wont even realize they’re doing math! Sewing camp is also an amazing way for your child to brush up on those fine motor skills. Does your child need extra cutting with scissors help, we’ve got that covered. How about learning how to thread a needle? We bet you’ll be asking your kids to do this for you at home when you need to replace a button for a fix a hem on your work pants.

Provides relaxed “structure” to your child’s summer plans. – And finally, even though summer camp is a structured class where your child is bound to learn valuable lessons, our camps are laid back enough that it doesn’t even come close to feeling like school. Nobody wants to attend school in the summer! But we’d all probably prefer to not have our kids laying around with nothing to do for two months. Summer camp is the perfect blend of laid back, fun creative times without the “sit at your desk and concentrate” boundaries of school.

Sewing Boss Interview – Tracy McElfresh of Tracy’s Sewing Studio Dayton OH

The other day I got to interview the mega-talented Tracy McElfresh! She’s the proud owner of Tracy’s Sewing Studio in Kettering Ohio.

Her studio is a little bit custom design, a little bit alterations and a little bit teaching studio!

We chatted about her super popular “All you can eat Embroidery & Scone workshops” and I found myself considering driving to Ohio to attend one!

I especially love Tracy’s historical costume work and I just discovered her Vlog where she posts really insightful videos of some of her fantastic techniques. It was a real pleasure to finally (virtually) meet her!

Check out our interview below:

We’ve got more sewing boss interviews here.

Sewing Boss Interview – Jesy Anderson of Needle, Ink & Thread in Beavercreek OH

This morning I drank a lot of coffee and chatted with my friend & sewing boss Jesy Anderson about her experience having her own sewing business. She’s the proud owner of Needle, Ink & Thread  a sewing (and a little bit crafting) studio in Beavercreek, OH.

We talked about how she learned to sew when she was an adult, how she failed home ec in junior high for not backstitching (a woman after my own heart!), how having your own sewing business means being able to create a schedule that works for YOU, about her upcoming trip to Quilt Market in St. Louis and so many other things! I absolutely loved starting my day shooting the breeze about all things entrepreneurial with Jesy! I hope you do too!

Check out our interview below:

We’ve got more sewing boss interviews here.

Sewing Boss Interview – Alison Parker ricRACK NOLA in New Orleans, La

Today I had an awesome chat with sewing boss Alison Parker, the owner of ricRack Nola,  a sewing studio in New Orleans La.

We talked about how she went from her career in costumes, film & television to start her sewing business about 4 1/2 years ago. We also talked about how entrepreneurship affords you amazing opportunities to take 3 months off to get married and go on your honeymoon!

Check out our interview below:

We’ve got more sewing boss interviews here.

Sewing Boss Interview – Yolanda Stiger from Sew Houston in Houston Tx

I am SEW honored to chat with sewing boss Yolanda Stiger, the owner of Sew Houston in Houston Tx.

We talked about how she became interested in sewing, how she got her business started and how a cupcake led her to her awesome & affordable storefront studio space.

I found myself relating so much to how her business evolved, how she does things at her studio and her life as an entrepreneur. I have a feeling you will too.  Check it out below:

We’ve got more sewing boss interviews here.

Virtual Coffee Date – We Chatted about Materials & Supplies for your Sewing Business

In this Hipstitch Academy virtual coffee date, we talked about all things related to the materials & supplies needed for class and what your policies are for the classes we teach.

Here are some topics of discussion we touched upon in the discussion:

  • Do you include your materials in the cost of your sewing classes?
  • Does your business model include selling fabric and supplies to your students?
  • If you sell fabrics and supplies to your students, do you find it challenging to stay stocked with enough fabrics/supplies to keep your students happy and allow choice?
  • Do you allow your students to bring in fabrics/supplies from outside sources?It was so much fun talking to the Hipstitch Academy community about all the things you do in your sewing business.

You should join us for the next Virtual Coffee Date – The calls are totally laid back. It’s like getting coffee with new friends to talk about what we do! We’re all located in different parts of the world, so why not share the knowledge. I created the Hipstitch Academy because this type of community for sewing teachers and sewing business owners didn’t exist to my knowledge, so I created it! It would mean so much to me for you join us and be part!

Couple Video Call Rules:

Join us on Video – Not just audio. It helps to facilitate the call a little better if we can see each other. I’m finding it prevents people from talking over each other a little when we can see who’s speaking and it’s fun to put a name to a face! Nobody cares what’s in your background and whether or not you chose to put on makeup that day 🙂 Thanks!!

Please be at one of the following stages of your business:
a.) Already up & running your own sewing business.
b.) Currently teaching sewing to adults and/or kids.
c.) Looking to start teaching and/or running your own sewing business in the near future.
Here is the link to RSVP for the call.

Fabrics & Supplies – What’s included in your classes? What’s not?

When it comes to the Materials & Supplies used in a sewing class, what’s included in the price of the class and what isn’t can vary GREATLY from teacher to teacher & business to business!

And even in my own business, we have some classes where all the supplies are included in the price. But then we also offer classes where you are able to purchase supplies before class (from someone else) and bring them with you or purchase them straight from us at the time of the class.

I feel there are pluses and minuses to all of the above.  What’ s most important is finding a good balance between giving you students the best sewing class experience, while also making sure your classes are profitable.

I am going to share with you why we do things the way we do at our sewing studio.

  • Does your business model include selling fabric and supplies to your students?

For us, somewhat yes, but not really.  And what I mean with that is that in our kids classes, we’ve found that including the cost of the supplies in each class is waaaaaay easier for us! Parent’s pay once for the session and that’s it. We factor in how many projects will be made in the session and then make sure to include that in the cost of the class.  We don’t have to worry about chasing parents down to get paid for the supplies and it just makes things a lot easier for everyone!  Keep in mind that we don’t give the kids full reign of the fabric collection.  🙂 There are certain fabrics that we set aside for the kids classes. Maybe they are smaller pieces or they cost a bit less per yard. This is a way we’ve found to keep our costs down and therefore pass along savings to our customers. The kids still get a tremendous choice when it comes to what they’ll make their projects from, but some of the more expensive fabrics we reserve for the customers who are purchasing by the yard.

  • If you sell fabrics and supplies to your students, do you find it challenging to stay stocked with enough fabrics/supplies to keep your students happy and allow choice?

    With our adult sewing classes, we do not include the fabrics in the cost of the class. There are a few reasons we do this.

    First of all, adults tend to a bit pickier when it comes to choosing their fabric fabrics for a sewing project! They know what they want and if we only keep a small stock of fabric inventory in our studio, there’s a great chance we are not going to have what they are looking for. So to head this off at the pass, we give everyone the option to bring in their own fabric.

    But – In our experience, a vast majority of our adult students do not have the time and/or energy to go out and get fabric before our class. So we tend to sell quite a bit of additional fabric to these adult students, creating another source of revenue for our studio.

Keep in mind this isn’t a one size fits all strategy and you have to give a lot of thought about what is going to work best for YOU! Let us know how you get around this in your sewing classes! We’d love to know!

Sewing Boss Interview – Kaitlyn Baeten Sew Fun Studios Frisco Tx

Here it is! The very first Sewing Boss Interview and I’m chatting with sewing boss Kaitlyn Baten, the owner of Sew Fun Studios  in Frisco, Tx.

I’ve had the privilege of seeing Kaitlyn’s business grow from the ground up to the bustling studio it is today.  I’m so honored that she agreed to be interviewed here on the Hipstitch Academy website.

We talked about how she got started, how she grew her business to be profitable in less than a year and how she continues to grow each day!

I am in awe of her and I I have a feeling you will be too!

Check it out below:

We’ve got more sewing boss interviews here.

Video Coffee Chat – Hiring & Managing Employees in your sewing business

This month our topic of discussion for the Virtual Video Coffee Date was one that seemed to keep coming up on past coffee dates frequently.

It was so much fun & exciting to dive in in and talk about their own experiences in:

Hiring & Managing Employees in your sewing business!

There are SEW many juicy topics of discussion around this subject. I would say this is probably my hardest part of being an entrepreneur. Yet, I couldn’t live without my girls!

Here are some topics of discussion we covered:

  • Do you have employees? If so, how many?
  • What’s the best thing about having people work for you?
  • What’s the worst thing about having people work for you?
  • What are some challenges you’ve had to overcome having someone working for you?
  • What is your hiring process like?
  • How do you recruit/find employees?

Be sure to join us for the next call – The calls are totally laid back. It’s like getting coffee with new friends to talk about what we do! We’re all located in different parts of the world, so why not share the knowledge. I created the Hipstitch Academy because this type of community for sewing teachers and sewing bsuiness owners didn’t exist to my knowledge, so I created it! It would mean so much to me for you join us and be part!

Couple Video Call Rules:

  1. I do ask that you join us on Video (not just audio). It helps to facilitate the call a little better if we can see each other. I’m finding it prevents people from talking over each other a little when we can see who’s speaking and it’s fun to put a name to a face! Nobody cares what’s in your background and whether or not you chose to put on makeup that day 🙂 Thanks!!
  2. To join this call & discussion I ask that you a.) Are already running your own sewing business, b.) Are a sewing teacher (to adults or kids) OR c.) Are looking to start your own sewing business in the near future.

 

Top 4 reason Sewing Birthday Parties are the best!

1. Anyone can have one! Yes! ANYONE can have a sewing birthday party!
Well anyone who is turning at least 7 years old, that is! There are no pre-requisite skills for the birthday child or guests! Our sewing birthday parties are in a way where each child learns how to safely use the sewing machine at the birthday party. They then have a chance to practice their skills at the party. And then yes, they actually make a real project to take home. It’s amazing how fast kids pick up on using the sewing machine with our special sewing machines made for beginners!

2. Projects made at a kids sewing birthday party are objects of love that kids & parents will be proud of, take home, and cherish for years to come.
The projects you make at our sewing parties are not throw aways. They are quality keepsake items made from fabric that will serve as childhood memories for years and years. We all know that kids do a lot of activities. Kids make  lot of things and they bring home A LOT of stuff they make. So much that sometimes parent’s don’t know what to do with everything, let alone where to keep it all. When you attend a sewing birthday party, each guest will make an adorable project from fabric that will be finished in a way that will hold up, not fall apart and last for years to come, because it’s made of fabric. We can’t tell you how many parents we’ve met through the years who let me know they still have ALL the sewing projects their son or daughter made in in our classes or at birthday parties they’ve attended.

3. You can have a sewing birthday party just about ANYWHERE.
Yes, that’s right. Sewing birthdays can take place in all kinds of different places. They definitely don’t have to happen in a sewing studio. Our sewing parties are mobile and work wonderfully in living rooms, pizza parlors, church basements or just about anywhere there are a couple of tables and room for all the kids. Our trained instructors are used to setting up sewing machines and cutting tables in all kinds of different places. We’re really good at making the space work and we’re more than comfortable teaching kids in many different atmospheres. A sewing birthday party feels really comfortable and cozy when it’s taking place in your home. Or if you’d like to hold it in a local place of business, most places are okay with it, as long as you’re purchasing something from their establishment. The possibilities are endless when you can take the sewing birthday party on the road!

4. Since sewing is usually a brand new activity for the kids, they’re (almost) always really into it!
What kid doesn’t want to learn how to use a machine that allows you to make clothing, stuffed animals,accessories and stuff to decorate your bedroom? Especially a machine that has a gas pedal attached to it that they are allowed to control. It’s rare that you’ll find a child who is not immediately really interested in learning how to make something with a sewing machine. There’s a sense of pride you get when it’s your turn to use this machine that is ordinarily used by adults. And when learning to use it in this party setting, accompanied by our train instructors, you feel safe. You know guests are learning how to use the machine properly and safely.