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STEP inside the workroom with Eileen Baca

STEP (Sewing and Textile Employment Pathway), a program that started at the beginning of 2021, is an apprenticeship program that teaches participants production sewing in a safe and flexible environment. Participants learn the fundamentals of sewing with the intention of joining the production sewing workforce after graduation. At the completion of the STEP program, participants are able to work with a client to proficiently produce their desired product. Not only are we preparing participants for the sewing industry in Flagstaff, but we are also creating a group of proficient, thoughtful members of the community at Threaded Together

What started as a simple vocational training program, has transformed into a beautiful space where we show up for each other, have flexibility with each other, and are honest with each other. This is not only a place for vocational training, it's a place for personal growth.

We show up for each other. We train, we sew, we laugh, and we cry. We’ve created a space of professional and personal development, not only for the apprentices but for the teachers as well. As the STEP program has become an integral part of Threaded Together, having the role of lead instructor has given me space to grow as a teacher. My confidence in my abilities as an instructor has grown alongside helping the apprentices gain their valuable

production skill set. I also love how much we all care for one another. When one of us has a hard moment, we give time, support and whatever else is needed (tea, snacks, and a break in the sunshine, anyone?).

Sure - We take time to nurture ourselves, but we also know how to buckle down and get a production job done. We work with wonderful partners like NAU, NAVMC, Dr. B Essential Weighted Blankets, and Novakinetics, to produce an array of products from PPE for frontline workers, to upcycled tote bags, to airplane parts!

If you or someone you know has a production sewing project ruminating, swing by Threaded Together and we can talk about getting your project off the ground.

The STEP program at Threaded Together is a place to learn, and grow in subtle and profound ways, for everyone involved.

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