Stitch and Burn: Bag Workshop

Guiding a 9 year old to sew is completely soul satisfying for me.7 sew smile

The happy accomplishment, with a practical product at the end is enchanting. This was a 4 hour workshop. The idea was to keep him engaged (fun), have a finished workable product, use our heads to engineer the idea, and never spend a second fussing about perfection. Continue reading

Embracing the Grit

rustI’ll admit right away that I have been quite biased towards wood. Building, refinishing, repairing, and beautifying wood has been my artful pastime for many years now. However, metal runs deep with my family lineage of steel workers, machinists, and builders, yet I rejected it as dirty, dangerous, and rough. While it IS all of those things, I am now embracing the grit and seeing the joys of metal. For me, it was coming home. Besides working in my literal home state of Ohio this summer, I recognized the smells of burning steel, the dirt, and the intense sweaty, grungy heat emanating from this place. I thought often of my Father long ago, coming home from work with black hands and curled metal chips embedded into the souls of his heavy, black work boots.

Of course my Father didn’t work for a creative master who admits he hails from the planet “Ooob” and plays The Orb remixed by Lee Scratch Perry on the sound system. In fact, an artist like myself would not have been welcome into my father’s production steel shop where parts for the industrial/military complex were produced. But there I was, part of the assembly line for Doug Meyer’s Rustbelt Rebirth creations.  Offering me an opportunity to be a part of his East Coast Showcase booth at Brimfield, he created artful frames for my oil paintings that matched his fantastic, industrial furniture. Using recycled scrap metal, he and the crew fabricate his art deco inspired designs that fit into a beautifully modern and artful home, office or studio.

"Sea horse" oil 24x18" framed in upcycled chocolate brown with a rolling serving cart inspired by travelling trains of the past.
“Sea horse” oil 24×18″ by Yabette framed in upcycled chocolate brown metal with a rolling serving cart of the traveler’s train era inspiration by Doug Meyer.

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You Can…. with Classes

At Swankety Swank, we believe everyone’s an artist. We think you should take the time, pull your girlfriends out of the house, and invest in a night of learning and fun in our creative atmosphere. So hurry, get signed up as classes start June 2nd and will fill up fast! Here’s a list with teachers:

Kathryn Bernard teaches:
Start Knitting $80
Wednesday, June 3, 10, 17, 24. 6:30-8:30pm
Learn how to start and end your project- and everything in between! In this class you will make two projects: hand-warmers that will teach you garter stitch, stockinette, and seed stitches well as how to seam your work. While making a striped hat, you’ll learn to knit in-the-round, knit ribbing, change yarn, and decrease.
$20 materials fee

Continue Knitting $80
Wednesday, July 1, 8, 15, 22. 6:30-8:30pm
Make the perfect summer garment: a shrug! In this class, you will learn to knit lace, how to measure your work, and how to pick up stitches. Two lace stitch patterns will be provided, so you can choose how adventurous you want to be. $40 materials fee

Ara James of Trop Mignon teaches:
Crafting- The Beginning $80
Wednesday, June 3, 10, 17, 24. 6:30-8:30pm
You’re going to learn so much in this class, we can’t fit it all here! Besides learning about crafting and where to get your craft fix, you’ll learn to use the all-important glue gun, making a patch, a pin, and a feathered hair piece. Bring your own glue gun, a pair of tweezers, and any fun materials you’d like to use- like fabric, shell, beads, etc. $20 materials fee

Crafting- The Next Step $80
Wednesday, July 1, 8, 15, 22. 6:30-8:30pm
This amazing, enlightening class will teach you to make pendants out of almost anything, a bunch of embroidery stitches, and how to apply them to pretty much anything. In the first session, you’ll learn the skills to make a necklace, in the second session, you’ll learn some basic embroidery stitches, in the third session, you’ll embellish an article of clothing and learn several more stitches, in the last session, you’ll make a fabric pendant, or an embellished patch. In short, you’ll learn to take your crafting in all-new directions! $20 materials fee

Tote Bag Workshop $150
Thursday, June 25 and July 2. 6:30-9pm
Learn to make a super cute reusable tote messenger bag in an intensive workshop for advanced beginners. Bring your own machine and any odds n’ ends of fabric or embellishments you may want to include. A variety of sturdy fabrics will be available. $10 materials fee- can be waived if you bring your own 2 yards of fabric.

Calli of Callibug Designs teaches:
Getting to Know Your Sewing Machine $150
Tuesday, June 9, 16 7-9pm
Do you have a sewing machine and no idea how to use it? Learned when you were five, but forgot? Bring your sewing machine and thread for some in-depth tutoring. You’ll walk away from this class with a fluffy, squishy pillow. Fabric and batting will be provided.

Intermediate Sewing $150
Tuesday, June 23, 30. 7-9pm
Now that you know how to use your machine, Calli will be showing you how to make a skirt that is fun and easy to customize to fit your style. Bring your machine; fabric & notions will be provided.

Intermediate-Advanced Sewing $150
Tuesday, July 7, 14, 21. 7-9pm
Got UFO? Unfinished objects are a pain, not least because you’ve got to motivate yourself, or because you have some problem that for some reason didn’t go away after three years in the bottom of your closet. Bring in your projects to work on, and get any help you need in an atmosphere of relaxation and camaraderie. General troubleshooting and Q and A welcome! Bring your own sewing machine. Workshop-style class.

Getting to Know Your Serger $150
Thursday, June 11, 18. 7-9pm
Introduction to serging. Learn to set up & use your serger and play with its capabilities. Bring your serger; materials will be provided. Two sergers are available to rent for $20.

Intermediate Serging/Re-Constructed Clothing $150
Thursday, July 9, 16. 7-9pm
Get into your serger even more! Turn that old shirt into a skirt and that old skirt into pants! Take clothes apart and remake them in your image, using your machine. Bring your serger and materials. Two sergers are available to rent for $20.

Sewing Techniques Class $150
Monday, June 29, July 6, 13. 7-9pm
Learn the essential details for serious sewers: 2 types of trouser pockets, fly zipper and welt pockets. Bring your machine to this Intermediate/Advanced class. Fabric and notions will be provided.

Darina Drapkin teaches:
Corset-Making Workshop $180
Thursday, July 23, 30. 6-9:30pm
This two-session class will teach you to make your very own corset- that fits you! In the first session, you will make a muslin mock-up, and in the second you will begin your choice fabric corset to finish at home. Bring your sewing machine to this Intermediate/Advanced class. $25 materials fee

Marni Sclaroff teaches:
Belly Dance Workshop $25
Sunday, July 12. 10:30am-12pm
A 1 ½ hour workshop that will include warm-up, basic isolations of hips, ribs, and shoulders, shimmies, belly undulations, some improvisational work, and slow and slinky moves. Great for the body- and your significant other will definitely appreciate it!