In our technological, service-based world, there is a pride in knowing that you can do something on your own. Working with your hands is satisfying whether you want to sew a dress, repair your bike or program a video game. So the classes and workshops in this list will show you how to do-it-yourself, whatever your “it” is.
Crafts – “The Shop”
This might be the mecca of Toronto DIY. The Shop recently opened, playing host to a wide variety of do it yourself classes at reasonable prices. Upcoming classes include loom weaving, ceramic cup making and wooden spoon carving. And after you become an expert you can reserve the studio for your own ceramic making, woodworking or metal welding projects.
Sewing and Tailoring – “The Workroom”
This sewing and fabric shop in Parkdale will teach you all you need to know about bits and bobbins. If you are a beginner, start with the sewing machine essentials class then move on to making a dress, a clutch or a quilt – for nearly the same cost as going out and buying one from a store.
Bike Repairs – “Bike Works” and “Sweet Pete’s Bike Shop”
Between April 19th and November 2nd bring your bike to Bike Works at Evergreen Brickworks. The staff will show you how to repair a flat tire, clean and lube your chain or tighten your breaks. It might be the end of summer but there are still lots of opportunities to get out on a bike before winter comes and ices over the trails.
Terrarium – “Crown Flora Studio”
Terrariums are all the rage. They are tiny beautiful glass plant worlds made out of rocks, sand, succulents or air plants. A postmodern bouquet? Learn how to make your own terrarium at Crown Flora Studio and at the end of the class you can go home with two of your own.
Furniture Reupholstery – “RE:Style Studio”
Buying new furniture gets expensive, but hand-me-downs are often out of style. Learn how to reupholster at RE:Style Studio and you might never need to step foot in Ikea again. The studio hosts specific classes like ottoman making and DIY headboards (bring your own fabric). If you have a piece that needs some loving, sign up for BYOP (Bring Your Own Piece).
Make Your Own Wedding Band – “Devil’s Workshop”
If wedding bells are ringing and you really want to do something unique, why not make your own wedding band? The instructors at Devil’s Workshop will teach you and your partner how to measure, cut, shape and polish your own ring from silver, white gold or yellow gold. If upcoming nuptials aren’t for you, try the metal printmaking class and make a sophisticated statement necklace.
Metal and Glasswork – “Nanopod”
Nanopod is a hidden gem in the Annex. Located on Harbord Street, this unmarked studio specializes in metal and glasswork. The courses they offer are intensive so if you are looking for in-depth instruction this is the place for you. Watch their website for guest instructors. Last month they hosted a taxidermy workshop!
Screen-Printing – “Kid Icarus”
Learn how to screen-print at Kid Icarus’s screen-printing 101 workshop. In this afternoon class you will learn a variety of techniques, plus instructors will show you how to get set up to screen-print at home.
Media Arts – “Interaccess”
If electronic arts is more your thing, Interaccess will show you how to do everything from code a video game to turn a banana into a controller. If you have a project you are already tinkering with, bring it to the studio on Wednesdays between 7 p.m. and 10 p.m. for Open Studio.