Stitch Academy is an amazing new model of workspace provision. We're bringing together manufacturing, design and education to create opportunities for everyone to access the fashion and making sector. We are working together with an exciting group of partners to realise a new creative and cultural hub in the heart of Hackney.
The building will provide much needed affordable workspace on the first floor for start-up businesses and creative makers. The ground floor will provide a range of subsidised mixed-use resources for our creative community, local residents and user groups.
These include a machines room providing a technical and educational space at the heart of the building. Around this the Stitch Academy will deliver a bursary studio programme supporting twelve young designers with professional business mentoring. We'll also be delivering a programme of community classes and events designed to inspire all generations in textiles, fashion, production and business.
What we'll deliver:
- 30 new affordable workspaces for young creatives
- A new machines room training facility for the community
- A bursary studio for 12 young fashion designers
- A business and mentoring programme
- A programme of activities exploring the textiles and fashion sector
Why it's a great idea:
There is a desperate need in the capital for more affordable creative workspace. Stitch Academy offers a platform for re-connecting the social impact of making and production with support, training and opportunities for the local community.
The economy is creating a compromising situation for our most talented designers. More integrated skill-sets are required to become established in today's climate. It's an enormously challenging environment and we need to provide all the help we can through resources, expertise, business support and professional mentoring.
Affordable property is the key to being able to establish the infrastructure and environment to deliver this. Stitch Academy represents an enormously rare opportunity to provide and deliver a new model. To offer the community with a new, socially committed, and creatively led centre for enhancing skills, inspiring new designers and makers, and creating new opportunities for jobs and employment.
Steps to get it done:
- Studio workspace refurbishment and installation
- Arrival of machines and installation of the machines room
- Electricity installations, refurbishment and certification
- Refurbishment of ground floor community events space
- Clearing of side yard and installation of new gates and fencing
- First member undertakes workspace at Stitch Academy
- Twentieth member undertakes workspace at Stitch Academy
- Fiftieth member undertakes workspace at Stitch Academy
- First community workshop held at the machines room
- Tenth community workshop held at the machines room
- First bursary recipient granted studio access
- Tenth bursary recipient granted studio access
We are creating a consortium of partners to ensure the delivery of the Stitch Academy for the local community. Hackney Council's Communities and Cultural Partnerships department are working with us in helping to promote the community programme. The group the Hackney Circle, consisting of over 350 Hackney residents, will be supported with workshops and resources at the Stitch Academy and will help us in creating an intergenerational programme of activities around the makers space.