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Recap of our Fashion Revolution Make-A-Thon

Thank you to all who donated supplies, volunteered, or came out to the event to support the Fashion Revolution Make-A-Thon!

Our first shift in the morning did a lot of cutting and pressing to get all of the materials ready to be sewn into our beautiful tote bags. Further into the day the tote bags really starting flying off the sewing machines! In the last two hours of the event we had 16 people buzzing around The Makehouse working hard to finish up all the tote bags. Each bag is unique to the sewists who cut and made them. All materials for the event were donated by our suppliers and our wonderful Makehouse community!

Our teams made over 40 tote bags that will be sold here at The Makehouse and other locations around Victoria. Proceeds from the tote bags will go to the Indigenous Perspectives Society which is a local not-for-profit that offers training and services that help create a deeper understanding of Indigenous perspectives, cultural differences, and the need for self-determination. We are so grateful to everyone who came to support the event, donate supplies, and volunteer time sewing up a storm on Saturday. The event was a great success, and we will be hosting more in the future! Make sure to stay tuned for sign-up announcements, these are definitely an event you do not want to miss!

Check out the photos for all the fun we had, and we hope to see you at the next Make-A-Thon! Thank you again to everyone who supported the event!

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Grand Opening Celebration

Grand Opening - The Makehouse new sewing studio

We opened our new space on October 4th and have already started hosting workshops in our bright new space. We continue to design our dream space over the coming weeks and invite you to join us on November 4th to officially celebrate grand opening and belated fifth birthday!

This will also be a chance to meet our awesome team, Tanya, Mollie and Shayna as well as some of our guest workshop hosts!

When? Saturday November 4th, 2017

Where? The Makehouse – 2950 Douglas Street (just behind Lifestyle Market – enter on Douglas or Burnside)

12-4pm – Open crafting table for all ages

12:30 – Official opening including a few words from Jenny  featuring our giant Texan scissors!

1pm – Nibbles and sweets until they run out!

1-4pm – Tom Vickery plays our beautiful walnut piano

Here’s a sneak peak of how the space is starting to take shape!

Help us spread the word by sharing this post or the Facebook event page.

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The Makehouse is Hiring

The Makehouse - Retail Fabric

The Makehouse is looking to welcome a new part-time staff member to our team!

We are a one-of-a-kind sewing studio and retail store offering a diverse range of workshops for children and adults. We carry a range of sewing patterns, fabrics, books, notions and tools. We are a small team committed to carrying great products & delivering the best customer service.

As a growing business we’re looking for an experienced & reliable Retail Sales Associate to join our team on a part-time basis. The ideal candidate will demonstrate the following:

  • Outgoing personality, positive attitude, great communication skills
  • Retail sales experience
  • A desire to deliver a strong customer experience that exceeds expectations
  • A genuine interest in sewing and the products we carry
  • Excellent math skills and a good memory
  • Able to follow direction & work independently
  • Reliable and stable lifestyle
  • Well established, mature work ethic
  • Able to work entire shift removed from personal social media, e.g. cell phone or Facebook
  • Attention to detail & the ability to work efficiently under pressure

A background in sewing is essential for this position as you will be helping customers chose fabrics, patterns and notions for their projects. Our amazing customers make up Victoria’s diverse sewing/textile community. Staff members must be friendly, knowledgeable and enjoy helping others.


Resume must be current with at least three previous employers listed.

Please apply in person or via email to and let us know why The Makehouse needs you! Please visit our website ( and familiarize yourself with what we do before applying and be sure to include a cover letter.

Thank you in advance for your application. Due to time constraints, we will only contact you if we are interested in setting up an interview.

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Victoria Fashion Week – February 2017

Victoria Fashion Week - Lola Dress

The first Victoria Fashion Week Runway Show was held on February 25th in The Atrium! Congratulations to all of the organizers, models, crew and local designers. The event was wildly successful – tickets sold out and everyone had a beautiful time. We cant wait until the full fashion week this Fall (stay tuned)!

In case you missed it, we’re sharing our portion of the show. Almost everything that we showcased is available as a sewing pattern or workshop at The Makehouse. We also do retail our bamboo underwear in case you want to treat yourself!

Above photo – Bamboo Lola Dress (Pattern by Victory Patterns) and Bamboo Leggings made by The Makehouse

Bamboo / cotton camisole and undies set by The Makehouse
Victoria Fashion Week - Bamboo Lingerie Set
Bamboo / cotton high waisted brief and cropped camisole set by The Makehouse
Victoria Fashion Week - Bamboo Boxers
Bamboo boxers and tee-shirt by The Makehouse – sewing patterns by Thread Theory available in-store
Victoria Fashion Week - Bamboo Boxers
Bamboo boxers and tee-shirt by The Makehouse – sewing patterns by Thread Theory available in-store
Merino wool double knit jumpsuit and bamboo knit top by The Makehouse
Victoria Fashion Week - The Makehouse
Cotton top and bamboo leggings by The Makehouse – Laurel (top or dress) by Colette Patterns available in-store
Victoria Fashion Week - The Makehouse
Cotton top and bamboo leggings by The Makehouse – Laurel (top or dress) by Colette Patterns available in-store
Victoria Fashion Week - The Makehouse
Victoria Fashion Week – The Makehouse
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Victoria Fashion Week

Victoria Fashion Week Logo

Watch out for The Makehouse on the runway at the launch of Victoria Fashion Week! We’ll be showcasing men’s and women’s clothing to inspire you to take up sewing in 2017!

Victoria Fashion Week 2017

The Atrium will host a gorgeous fashion show in February, showcasing local designers and helping to bring Victoria’s underground, up-and-coming fashion scene to the surface. The preview event celebrates the launch of Victoria Fashion Week, which is in the works for Fall 2017. The show will showcase over 10 local designers, several partner businesses and 23 local models. At intermission, participate in our highly curated silent auction to help raise money for the Victoria Sexual Assault Centre, and pick up some drinks and appetizers.

Doors open at 6pm, show starts at 7:00 and runs until 9:30.

Anyone who enjoyed Fashion Splash in Victoria’s Inner Harbour will love this event!

Fashion Splash - The Makehouse Red Polkadot Dress
The Makehouse Red Polkadot Dress – Fashion Splash 2015

Ticket Information:

Only 50 VIP tickets will be available. These ticket will give you access to special front row seats, as well as a swag bag, access to the deconstructed preview party (see below) and a pop up party held mid-week prior to the show. We have also partnered with the Victoria Film Festival & The Vic Theatre for a special fashion film screening, included in the VIP ticket.

The VIP Pre-show is a deconstructed fashion show that will allow you an up close and personal view of each designer’s work, and a chance to chat with the designers themselves. Held at Studio Robazzo in the upcoming design district of Victoria, see the latest creations of the local designers and fashion makers before the runway show. The event includes live entertainment as well as beverages and appetizers. Get your advanced tickets here.

The Makehouse retro pantsuit on the runway at Fashion Splash 2015


Studio Robazzo | Art Direction

A multi-disciplinary design studio in Victoria B.C. As they say, “Our team has all the skills necessary to bring just about any idea into reality”. We’re stoked to have Robazzo on our team as our directive designers.

Astros Logo.png

Astros Media | Videography

A talented videography startup. From their website: “Incorporating peak human experience within a greater societal context through the medium of film. Creating a moving cultural narrative that is meant to inspire and promote change.”


The Atrium | Venue

The February 25th launch show takes place at the beautiful Atrium building at 800 Yates street. “The building features forward thinking architecture, cutting edge systems and dynamic public areas including a large central atrium. The Atrium Building was designed for optimized energy efficiency and environmentally conscious operations and is certified LEED Gold by the Canada Green Building Council.”




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Made by You

We love to see what you can do when you put your mind to it! Here are some of the last month’s student makes (in no particular order). The first photo features Emma in her first ever bamboo dress created during the Sewing with Knits Workshop using the Moneta dress pattern by Colette!


Cotton boxer shorts made at home after taking our Bamboo Boxers Workshop!

3 Tote Bags sewn by one of our students

One of our students went home after our Sew a Tote Bag workshop and made 3 more!


Playful cotton knit Moneta dress sewn at the last Sewing with Knits Workshop.

Stool by Sharon Broadley - Before
Stool by Sharon Broadley – Before
Stool by Sharon Broadley - After
Stool by Sharon Broadley – After








This gorgeous stool was recovered in our Simple Upholstery Workshop by local textile artist Sharon Broadley!


This quilt was made by an eleven year old girl during Make Club. This was her second (and largest) quilt project!

Needle Felt Red and White Mushroom on Green Grass

Needle Felt Mushroom handmade at September Make Club.

Black and white stool - Upholstery Project

This classy looking stool (mid progress) from our September Simple Upholstery Workshop.


Little colourful house pencil case made by 8 year old student at Make Club.

If you’ve made something awesome and would like to share, please email pics and a breif description to jenny(at)

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Celebrate 4 Years of The Makehouse

The Makehouse is turning 4 years old on September 1st. We’re going to have a day long celebration on Saturday September 3rd from 10am-6pm!

25% off ALL fabrics and patterns in-store including the fabulous Cotton + Steel collections!

11am – 15 minute Introduction to The Makehouse Sewing Machines and Equipment 

12pm Cupcake Service (until they run out!)

1pm – 15 minute Introduction to The Makehouse Sewing Machines and Equipment

2-4pm – Accessory Making (First come/first serve) – Create fun wearable projects including bowties, brooch pins, patches, headbands, wrist cuffs, hair bands & clips. All materials provided by The Makehouse.

Enter to win $100 gift certificate! 


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Furniture DIY: Chairs

One of our most popular workshops is Simple Upholstery. This is a class we run regularly and spans four weeks, giving you the opportunity to reupholster a small item of furniture. If you are a fan of vintage chairs, this is a great opportunity to learn how to fix things up.

In the meantime, here is a round up of our favourite chair DIYs which you an find on our Upcycled Furniture Ideas Board.

The “Upholstered” Wooden Chair

Okay so this first one would probably horrify Miro, our upholstery teacher, and you couldn’t really do it to a better chair than the one used, but for a bottle of Mod Podge and some cute fabric, this is pretty cool. For the full how to, go to the blog, Designer trapped in a lawyer’s body.


The Mash Up

Take an old dining room chair, reupholster (come to our class to learn how) and then go all Frankenstein on it and attach it to an office swivel chair. We found this tutorial on MyMorningInspiration.

mash up chair

The Blah Office Chair

Again, this apartmenttherapy how to doesn’t require authentic upholstery skills, but instead calls for fabric and a nail gun. Looks pretty sassy for a blah chair!


The Belt Chair

Although this tutorial from EchoPaul Official doesn’t call for fabric, it does call for traditional furniture tacks, which we just love as they look so darn classy. The seat of this chair is made of belts.


The Vintage Webbed Chair

This tutorial from A Beautiful Mess might be a little more difficult than it looks, but we’d definitely give it a try. Keep your eyes peeled for frayed or seatless aluminum chairs and given them a new lease of life with coloured paracord.

cord chair

The Burke Chair

Although you might have a hard time finding a good vintage version of the Burke, look out for a similar style. This chair we found on is refurbished with a vintage blanket!


We hope our finds have inspired you. For more information about our traditional upholstery class, click here.

The girls at ( took our Simple Upholstery class and loved it, taking a cute vintage foot stool back to their office. Take a look at the video they made.

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Hello St. John’s!

Anna Templeton Centre

Jenny Ambrose is delighted to return to St. John’s this summer to bring some of her most popular workshops to the fine folks of Newfoundland! All the workshops will take place at the Anna Templeton Centre located at 278 Duckworth Street between August 10-13th, 2016.

You can book online by following the link below, or call the centre at  (709) 739-7623.

Lovely Bamboo Leggings & The Cutest Knickers

Lovely Bamboo Leggings & The Cutest Knickers

Date: Wednesday August 10, 2016 (6-9pm)

This class is a special opportunity to learn how to sew your very own, best fitting, leggings from the very lovely Jenny Ambrose.  Jenny will guide you through the steps – from choosing the size and colour of your project to learning how to construct your garment using the serger, and how to apply the elastics with a sewing machine and hem with the coverstitch machine.  There are even options to trim your legs with stretch lace, binding or lingerie elastic.  Or, forgo the leggings and make yourself the cutest best fitting knickers. It could be the best three hours of your life as the class size is small; you will get plenty of instructor attention, complete one pair of leggings, and leave with the pattern and skills to make additional pairs.  Basics sewing skills are recommended.

A list of available colours in bamboo knit will be emailed to participants prior to the workshop.
Please note: this class is limited to six participants

Fee: $70 (includes HST & supplies)

You Got This! Sew Your Own Swimwear

You Got This! Sew Your Own Swimwear

Date: August 11 & 12th, 2016 (6-9pm)

According to Jenny, sewing swimwear is not as hard as people fear, and she will show you how to sew your ideal suit with confidence.  In two three-hour classes you will go step by step through the process as you sew your very own best fitting swim suit.  Sign up and Jenny wil make you a believer.

Swimsuit styles will be discussed with each participant prior to the workshop so you will know how much fabric to purchase for your project. Select colours of swimsuit fabric can be pre-ordered from Jenny at least 2 weeks before the workshop @ $12p/m. Please inquire about availability by email

Please note: this class is limited to six participants.

Fee: $120 (includes HST, pattern & elastics)

Sensational Knits – Summer Dress

Sensational Knits – Summer Dress

Date: Saturday August 13th, 2016 (10 am – 3 pm – with lunch break)

Join Jenny Ambrose as she shares with you the skills and secrets to using soft stretch cottons or bamboo to make your best fitting and most comfortable summer dress.  It will be so awesome that you will wear your dress all year round with your lovely bamboo leggings.

In this one-day workshop Jenny will guide you step by step through the process of sewing the dress.  You’ll choose your fabric and size; learn how to construct your garment using the serger, how to hem with the coverstitch machine, and how to make adjustments so that the dress fits and falls perfectly.  Small class size ensures lots of instructor attention.  Basic sewing skills are recommended.

Dress styles will be discussed with each participant prior to the workshop so you will know how much fabric to purchase for your project. Bamboo fabrics can be pre-ordered from Jenny at least 2 weeks before the workshop for @ $21p/m. Please inquire about availability by email

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Festival of Trees – We need your vote!

The Makehouse is a proud sponsor of the 2015 Festival of Trees benefiting BC Children’s Hospital Foundation. In the spirit of the season, we invite you to experience the magic in person at The Bay Centre from now until January 5, 2016. Make sure to vote and donate for your favourite tree to help change the lives of sick children in our province. All voting revenue will support the BC Children’s Hospital’s Excellence in Child Health Fund which helps fund the urgent needs of the hospital including specialized research into childhood diseases, the purchase of and/or upgrading to state-of-the-art medical equipment, and education programs for caregivers and families.

For every $2 raised on this page, we will receive one vote towards the coveted People’s Choice Award, announced in January 2016.

Learn more about the Festival and the children it helps.

You can vote for The Makehouse tree here!