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What's new in various product categories; monthly update.

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Sewing & Craft Alliance

New entity developed to provide education and resources.

by Staff Report (June 16, 2008)

The Sewing & Craft Alliance (SCA) is a new entity established to provide education and creative resources to the sewing and craft enthusiast. The SCA will also offer opportunities for retailers and businesses in the sewing, quilting, crafting, or textile industries to showcase their products and services to the creative community through advertising, sponsorships, and promotions.

The SCA website, www.gotsewing.com, will serve as the portal to a number of sites geared to promoting sewing and crafting. You can visit the complete line-up of websites designed to promote education and enthusiasm among all levels and ages of consumers at Sewing.org, NationalSewingMonth.org, TrainedSewingInstructor.com, SewTrendy.com, and SewingEvents.com.

Sewing.org, the popular website formerly owned by the Home Sewing Association, has been purchased and will continue to be a resource for free projects and learn-to-sew articles, including the new SEW-lutions Guidelines for Sewing. This website enjoys an annual unique visitor count of over 2 .5 million creative enthusiasts and will now feature advertising opportunities for manufacturers and retailers to reach this all-important customer.

Also making a comeback is one of the most popular areas of the sewing.org site the My Sewing Room feature where sewing enthusiasts can submit photos of their personal sewing space. Seeing everyone's sewing space, from large organized rooms to kitchen corners, miniscule closets, and even a wonderful sewing space in a garage shows that room size doesn't matter when enjoying the creative benefits of sewing.

The Trained Sewing Instructor program (www.TrainedSewingInstructor.com) is an innovative and unique program for the industry that offers three full days of business instruction for sewing enthusiasts. The TSI program will launch for the first time in 2008 at the ASG Conference in Chicago in July. While many training programs in the industry focus on teaching and certifying educators on sewing techniques, the TSI program is the only course that teaches sewing enthusiasts how to be successful business owners by focusing on how to develop exciting and successful classes; how to price their services for profit; accounting and legal issues; marketing and advertising and much more. The goal is to train, encourage and support successful sewing educators who promote product sales and enthusiasm through education. (Note: An outline of the program is below.)

The only searchable database of sewing instructors (TSI's) available in the industry will be included on www.sewing.org (available soon) and will offer consumers and retailers an opportunity to search by state, zip code or area code to locate an instructor in their area.

The SCA is proud to co-sponsor, in conjunction with the American Sewing Guild, the popular National Sewing Month campaign (www.NationalSewingMonth.org). This year's theme Go Green! Sew Green! is both timely and eco-friendly. The SCA will make it easy for consumers, guilds, retailers, and manufacturers to be involved by providing a variety of free promotional materials that can be downloaded directly from the website for promotional use starting July 1.


The SCA has a number of exciting programs and plans in the development stage to generate enthusiasm among consumers. Manufacturers and retailers are invited to share their interest, ideas and thoughts with us by contacting jperhac@gotsewing.com.

The Sewing & Craft Alliance is a partnership between Joyce Perhac, President of ProShow, Inc. an industry veteran with a reputation for promoting consumer education and Janice Blasko, President of The Abbey Group, a website developer with clients in a variety of industries.

Trained Sewing Instructor 3 Day Workshop Outline

Day 1

TSI Workshop Overview

Introductions ... TSI Goals & Benefits ... What is the Sewing & Craft Alliance

Getting Started

Define your goals ... Should you be a teacher? ... Know your skills ... Sewing experience analysis ... What it takes to be successful ... Who/What/When/Where

Deciding What to Teach

Who is your target audience? ... Teaching formats: classes, demonstrations & workshops ... Planning & scheduling classes for children, teens & adults ... Introduction to the sewing machine ... Sewing, quilting & home dcor techniques for Level 1, Level 2 and Level 3 classes ... Sewing, quilting & home dcor projects for Level 1, Level 2 and Level 3 classes ... Simplicity Fashion & Trend Forecast ... Quick demo ideas ... Class interest sign-up sheet ... SEW-lutions Guidelines to Successful Sewing from SCA ... Sewing programs for kids ... Teaching Tips from Bernina for Kids ... Mommy and Me classes

Deciding Where to Teach

Analyze what's being taught in your area ... What are the opportunities? ... Market Research form

12:00pm - 1:00pm Lunch - Group Networking Opportunity

Deciding Where to Teach (continued)

Investigate retail stores, other public places ... Adult education programs, after-school programs, Girl Scouts, YWCA, women's clubs, private classes, summer camps, etc. ... Teaching at home

Planning Successful Sewing Classes

How to write catchy class descriptions ... Practice writing activity ... How to create exciting classes ... Importance of made-up samples ... Creating display boards ... Technology Tools ... Classroom set-up

Creating Lesson Plans

Steps for writing Lesson Plans ... Introduce Lesson Plan template ... Student Class Supply List form ... Teacher Class Supply List form ... Review sample Lesson Plans - Level 1, 2, 3 ... Sewing Class Evaluation form ... Practice writing a Lesson Plan for a 3-hour hands-on class


Teaching Techniques

What makes a good teacher ... Teaching steps & tips ... Types of learning styles ... Mini Shoulder Purse how-to demo ... Review Teaching Evaluation form ... Demo techniques ... Write your practice teaching demo Lesson Plan ... Class control ... Handling Problem Students ... Communicating with students ... Importance of good samples

Teaching in Retail Stores

Role playing - follow script and act out several scenarios ... Importance of soft selling ... Notions demonstration activity ... Questions to ask a retailer ... Teaching Agreement form

12:00pm - 1:00pm Lunch - Group Networking Opportunity

Teaching in Retail Stores (continued)

Tips for Teaching in Jo-Ann Stores ... Tips from Husqvarna Viking for Teaching in Jo-Ann's Lease Departments, including a letter from Sue Hausmann ... Tips for Teaching in Hancock Fabrics Stores ... Sewing lounges

Teaching Sewing as a Business

Pricing Guidelines manual ... Teaching sewing for profit ... Learn how to set teaching fees ... Cancellation policies ... Legal issues, taxes, liability, copyright infringement - questions to ask ... Organize your paperwork ... Record keeping ... Income/expense reports ... What's deductible ... Payment options (checks, credit cards) ... Liability insurance ... Resources (websites; mfr's; Small Bus Admin)

Day 3

Teaching Sewing as a Business (continued)

Facility Challenges ... Handling the unexpected

Marketing & Advertising Your Services

SCA database - how it works ... Distribute flyers ... Develop email lists ... How to use your email list for marketing ... Word of mouth ... Press releases ... In-store posters ... Newspaper ads ... Speak about the creativity of sewing to local groups ... Local radio and TV talk shows offer opportunities ... Persuasive sales words ... Resources (magazines, professional associations; etc.) ... Blogs

Presenting a Professional Image

What to wear ... Creating a portfolio ... Attendance certificate ... Letters of reference ... Teaching experience ... Business card ... Resume and credentials ... Photographs of sewing projects ... Sample Lesson Plans ... TSI logo

Sewing Up Your Business

Sample forms ... Create a package (pricing list, lesson plan form, promotional flyer, etc.)

12:00pm - 1:00pm Lunch - Group Networking Opportunity

Practice Teaching to Group

Each participant will teach a 10-minute, pre-selected and prepared technique to the entire group

Awarding of Attendance Certificates



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