Yes. Yes. Yes!
I've had this questions several times in the past few months and the simple answer is "YES". The goal of Hartford Stitch is to make sewing accessible to everyone no matter their age (assuming they are 8 or older :) ) and gender. I have prided myself on offering classes and projects that are 1) responsive to feedback from current and prospective students, 2) practical, stylish and trendy, and 3) useful for learning additional sewing skills. As the interest grew among girls to take my classes the projects trended towards typically "girly" projects like skirts, purses and accessories.
Starting with our fall classes we're going to change this up a bit! I no longer release a list of projects before the class starts because I have found that restricting kids to my ideas doesn't always do much for their creativity. Each class starts with a planned project but then we work together to come up with projects: tweaking their ideas to fit their skill levels, provide a little challenge and maximize what they can learn! For example, I thought I had an excellent lesson plan for my spring Sewing Circle and then my students asked to make stuffed animals instead. We went down that route and I couldn't be prouder or more amazed at what the young sewists created!
All classes will start with a specific project that will be "gender neutral". From there we'll work together to figure out the best projects for everyone! I want all my students to learn this amazing skill, push their creativity and have a lot of fun!
I've updated our fabric choices too. Not to assume that all girls want pink and floral or that all boys want blue and monsters, but we now have a wide spectrum of prints and colors to create with!