West End's Sew Valley Is Hosting Community Classes This Fall, Including DIY Alterations and Natural Dyeing

Learn sewing techniques to transform your existing wardrobe, make your own tote bag, upcycle old T-shirts or use natural indigo dye to transform fabrics.

click to enlarge Sew Valley is hosting a series of classes for all ages and skill levels. - PHOTO: SOPHIE DANIN
Photo: Sophie Danin
Sew Valley is hosting a series of classes for all ages and skill levels.

Sew Valley — a small-batch production, rentable workspace and education facility for apparel designers and entrepreneurs in the West End — is hosting fun public sewing and garment classes this fall covering everything from DIY alterations to natural dyeing. 

"Educational workshops are extremely important to Sew Valley's mission, as we exist to provide resources and opportunities for individuals looking to build/grown their small apparel business in the Cincinnati region, as well as individuals looking to increase their skill set in the sewn trades," Shailah Maynard, co-founder and COO of Sew Valley, tells CityBeat via email. "We're here to show people that sewing isn't scary, and that if you have an idea, you can make it happen. Sew Valley will help you learn how to get there."

Classes run through December. 

  • DIY Alterations: In this class, attendees will work in an open studio to learn the basics of altering their own clothing — things like hemming or taking in a waist. Bring two to three items that need to be altered. "So many people inquire looking to learn how to alter their own clothing. Teaching people how to do this themselves not only teaches people the basics of sewing (a dying trade in the U.S.), but it also encourages them to extend the life of their current wardrobe, instead of throwing it away," says Maynard. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Sept. 18 and 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Nov. 13; $60.
  • Intro to Industrial Sewing: This class — Sew Valley's most popular — is aimed at those with some sewing experience and will cover the difference between domestic and industrial sewing. Attendees will learn " how to use an industrial straight stitch, zig zag machine, three-thread serger, and professional steam iron in order to create a tote bag to take home." 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Nov. 7 and 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Dec. 4; $129.
  • Re-Do: This class is aimed at beginner sewers ages 14-20. Bring four to six old T-shirts and learn how to upcycle them in new ways. Attendees are encouraged to bring their own sewing machines, but contact Sew Valley if you don't have one. "(Teens will) learn the basics of sewing, how to re-do their current wardrobe, learn the impacts fast fashion brands have on the apparel industry, and what each of us as individuals can do to prevent superfluous clothing from going straight to landfill," says Maynard. 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Oct. 2 and 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Oct. 9; $70.
  • Natural Dye: Attendees will get a yard of cotton and a tote bag to dye with natural dyes, including indigo. 6:30-8 p.m. Dec. 9 and 10-11:30 a.m. Dec. 11; $50.
  • Idea to Product: Schedule a virtual one-on-one; $65.

Sign up for classes online at sewvalley.org.

Maynard says masks are encouraged for those who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 and required for those who haven't been. The classroom is large enough for social distancing, and sanitizer will be provided.

Sew Valley is located at 1010 Hulbert Ave., West End.

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