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Featherweight, Troubleshooting, Vintage Machine Workshops and Remove Your Covers... coming right up!

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As you may (or may not?) know... I've been working behind the scenes to build a full-scale Academy to teach the art and skill of sewing machine service, repair, and restoration.

Wait! Don't stop reading yet!

I know many of you probably feel the way I did years and years ago before I was comfortable with even looking at a sewing machine wrong! This isn't just for people that want to become a technician, this is also for YOU, the individual that wants to find a level of comfort in taking care of your own machine (or for some of you, a whole fleet of machines!).

I have heard from so many of you, over the last 18-months of Covid madness especially, that finding a reliable technician to service and repair your sewing machines is more and more difficult, and for some of you that live rurally, nearly impossible.

I'm listening!!

We already knew there was a shortage of technicians all over the country (and even more so around the world), but Covid has forced so many older, reliable technicians into retirement... because of burnout. Most of us with service shops worked 12-hour days, 7 days a week through 2020 and into this year.

Bad news - there isn't a new crop of technicians to replace those that have retired or thrown in the towel. So the wait times on getting your machine back are likely to continue growing, even after Covid.

Yes, there is a lot of "free" info out there on the internet... I constantly see people recommending a Google search to find a video that adjusts timing, or fixes issue A-Z... but most of the content is terrible terrible advice, much of it coming from those that don't understand the complexities of the sewing machine and the often simple solutions that really work and get you back to sewing. Don't ask me how many machines have ended up in my shop in irreparable condition because of a Youtube fix attempt :(

There are a few independent folks out there teaching similar programs, but they require travel, face-to-face instruction, and you have to absorb all of the information in a short amount of time without much follow-up support. I don't see any other programs that:

  • allow you to learn from your home, at your own pace - no expensive or complicated travel

  • offers on-demand learning that you own for life - guided video instruction available to you 24/7, so even if you don't have time to focus on the material until midnight, we have you covered!

  • includes the option for LIVE, remote instruction so you always have a guiding hand on your shoulder - in addition to the on-demand videos, each workshop will host several live, online workshops so you can participate as often as you want and get the answers you need in real-time

  • has an easy-to-learn system to help you grasp the concepts of caring for machines - yes, our SDOCS system will teach you the EXACT same procedures used every single day in the Sewing Doc professional service shop that we've used for the last 10+ years

The Sewing Doc Academy will offer an entire range of workshops that cater to the person that just wants to keep their machine running without it going to the shop every year, to the hobbyist that likes to tinker and learn how machines work, all the way through to the person that wants a side or retirement income, or maybe even a new career in sewing machine service. Our workshops are designed to meet the need of all of these options.

Below you will find a timeline estimating our upcoming workshops release... The Featherweight Workshop has been my most popular class for years, and its launch will be a little different, as it's been proven to be a favorite with the on-demand option. But we are expanding it to include our hybrid method of on-demand AND live remote classes, to join for feedback from the instructor. THIS WORKSHOP IS LAUNCHING ON SEPTEMBER 13 and more details are coming in a separate email.

You can sign up here for the waitlist, though! If you are already a participant in The Featherweight Workshop on-demand, we have a special offer coming for you!

Our next workshops are brand new to the online Academy, and we need your help!

ASK FOR HELP #1: The "Help! What's wrong with my machine?!" is a guided troubleshooting method - again, teaching you the EXACT same procedures used in our shop to determine what's wrong with the sewing machine. Did you know the majority of sewing machine issues are caused by user error and are often an easy fix with the right knowledge? This workshop will be your answered prayers when it's 1 a.m. and you are tired, trying to meet a stressful deadline, and you need answers now on whether your machine is really broken and needs to go to the repair shop, or if it's something that can easily be fixed on the spot. This will save you both time and money! (LAUNCHING ESTIMATED FOR SEPTEMBER 18)

If you think this would be of help to you, PLEASE comment below and let us know if there are any particular struggles you have with your machine, or with sewing with a sewing machine in general. We want to make sure we cover all the bases, so please give us all of your scenarios and stories!

ASK FOR HELP #2: The Vintage Machine Workshop is going to cover ALL vintage machines (there are a few exceptions, but very few!) - cleaning, lubrication, minor repairs, replacing parts, finding parts that aren't made anymore, identifying/buying/reselling machines for profit... it's all there. Some have a collection to care for, others want to make sure they can save that $15 Kenmore they found at a yard sale, or Grandma's old Singer that's been sitting in the basement for 30 years. (LAUNCHING ON OR AROUND JANUARY 7)

If this workshop sounds like your thing, please comment below and let us know what would be included in a Vintage Machine Workshop that would make you over-the-top excited! I'm a crazy old sewing machine lady, and I know this will bring out the other old sewing machine enthusiasts!! Where's my tribe?!

ASK FOR HELP #3: Remove Your Covers is an on-demand class that will take time to build across the board. It is a workshop I taught in person in 2019 before the quarantine, and it is more important now than ever that we build this workshop to make the information available to everyone on earth that needs it. RYC is an on-demand video workshop that applies SPECIFICALLY TO YOUR MACHINE. It will help you in removing the covers (did you see that coming?) the correct way, without damaging the computer, wires, or moving parts, clean and lubricate, and make minor repairs. For the most part, RYC is the answer to NOT taking your machine in every year for routine service. Talk about saving time AND money! (LAUNCH IS PERPETUAL AND ONGOING)

(this workshop is the reason this industry hates me, by the way)

If you are interested in learning to remove the covers of your machine (yes, FANCY, EXPENSIVE ONES INCLUDED), please click here to complete a short form, as these workshops are created based on the popularity of certain families or models of machines. This feedback is extremely important to us!

The three workshops listed above will be pilot programs, for lack of a better term, and we will need your help with input, testing our workshops, and providing feedback on what we can improve. We will first launch these programs to a limited number of people for an incredibly low price, so please hang with us on this journey, and help us build something amazing. YOU are the reason I am devoted to this endeavor!

As always, we would love the feedback from your sewing and quilting friends, so please feel free to share - our mission is to help as many people as possible, and to keep alllll the sewing machines going.

And for those of you that have been following us for a while and waiting for us to get the show on the road, thank you SO MUCH for still being with us. We knew we would know when the time was right, and here we are!

Happy Sewing!

Andi Barney, Sewing Doc

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