The most important thing is that you love what you are doing, and the second that you are not afraid of where your next idea will lead. – Charles Eames
At The School of Making, we preserve the Living Arts through educational and open source initiatives and programs. We work at the intersection of fashion, craft, and DIY—utilizing 100% organic materials, educational experiences, books, and DIY Kits to create an elevated making experience. We seek to create a community of makers by sharing ideas and inspirations and using craft to inform our design process.
Our newly relaunched Swatch of the Month is a monthly subscription program from The School of Making for design explorations and embroidery technique practice and development. It marries our values of design and craft with 100% organic cotton fabrics, offering you the opportunity to experiment with our techniques and designs as you sew your monthly fabric swatch. Our Swatches and DIY Kits provide pre-cut, pre-stenciled pieces with all the thread and notions needed to explore design, create a garment, build a wardrobe, and fill everyday life with creativity and making.
This program was offered in 2014 and 2015 and is being reintroduced again in 2021 with new designs and additions to the monthly subscription service. Pre-order now for January delivery and learn more about the program below.
In 2012, Natalie wrote more about our fabric swatches in Alabama Studio Sewing + Design:
“My simple decision to set up a standard way of recording the development of every design and fabric has led to an elaborate library consisting of more than five hundred swatches. To date we have twenty-seven books of fabric swatches that we use for everything from custom orders for clothing and interiors to inspiration for participants in our weekend workshops. When I spread these books across one of our 14′-long work tables, I am amazed to see the beauty we’ve created. In the past, we often tested colorways in garment form. Today, before any garment is cut, a tested and completed fabric sample swatch is approved. This small step has saved the company untold money, time, and waste.”
Through our Swatch of the Month program, we’ve developed monthly fabric and textile designs for at-home sewing. This process has helped us find more ways to share the beauty and inspiration in design and making. It contributes to and fuels the creative process—a unique (and often-times challenging) journey for each of us.
HOW IT WORKS
At the beginning of each month in 2021, participants will receive a DIY Kit featuring a unique fabric swatch to be sewn using embroidery techniques from The School of Making. Embroidery techniques can be found in The School of Making’s Studio Book Series. Each kit comes stenciled and ready-to-sew with all of the notions needed to complete the swatch in the shown design choices.
We will also be sharing the swatches, our design choices, and options for different techniques in an exclusive monthly newsletter. Share your project and follow along with others in the maker community using the hashtags #theschoolofmaking and #swatchofthemonth21.
WHAT YOU GET
24 Fabric Swatches – Each fabric swatch is a 10” x 16” rectangle of our 100% organic medium-weight cotton jersey. Every month, participants will receive two fabric swatches. The top layer fabric will be stenciled; the bottom layer fabric will be un-stenciled.
10 spools of Button Craft Thread – Utilized throughout the projects in The School of Making, Button Craft Thread is our go-to for all hand-sewing projects. It is strong, durable, and long-lasting.
12 Paper Headers – Made from recycled card stock, each header can be labeled and attached to your fabric swatch before organizing into a three-ring binder.
Exclusive monthly newsletter – The newsletter will be filled with inspirations, behind-the-scenes stories, a list of design choices, first access to promotions and offers, and special collaborations.
SUGGESTED ADDITIONAL TOOLS + MATERIALS
Studio Book Series: Alabama Stitch Book, Alabama Studio Sewing + Design, Alabama Studio Sewing Patterns, The Geometry of Hand-Sewing
Binder (Add-on for Swatch of the Month)
Fine-point Sharpie (for writing on your header)
All orders from now through 2020 will receive a digital PDF that can be printed and gifted. In January, we’ll ship out our first monthly subscription along with the exclusive newsletter. January’s shipment will include 12 headers, 10 spools of Button Craft Thread, and fabric swatches for January. Each subsequent month’s shipment will include that month’s swatches and any additional notions needed to complete the swatch design and the exclusive newsletter to your inbox.
For questions or assistance ordering, contact:
+1.256.760.1090 x 116
+1.256.760.1090 x 105
A lovely subscription to those that are interested in beading and embroidering swatches and have the time to do so. I prefered the build a wardrobe program to give me more sewing options.
May 2021 be a better and healthier year for the world.
Thank you for the feedback, Jen. Our Corset Bundle (https://alabamachanin.com/products/corset-bundle?taxon_id=41), T-Shirt Top Bundle (https://alabamachanin.com/products/t-shirt-top-pattern-printed-fabric-bundle-sewing-project?taxon_id=41), and Swing Skirt Bundle (https://alabamachanin.com/products/swing-skirt-fabric-notions-bundle?taxon_id=41) are great alternatives to the Build a Wardrobe kits.