Sewing machines perch atop blue-skirted tables in a brightly lit room accented with hardwood floors, bookshelves brimming with multihued material, and wall displays of buttons and sewing accessories. In these welcoming confines, the instructors of Chenoa Designs guide students through their projects, imparting techniques for attaching appliqués to homemade handbags or adjusting dress patterns to fit a pet goldfish. The team of seam sultans works to expand the stitchwork community through a roster of classes that guide newcomers on everything from the basics of operating a sewing machine to the intricacies of embroidery and appliqué. While students work, they can draw from the DIY emporium's stock of specialty embroidery machines and binding systems by Martelli along with renowned lines such as Jenny Haskins designs to ensure their projects benefit from top-notch materials and tools.
Ontario College of Health & Technology educates its students to herald a healthier and safer tomorrow. Through programs that focus on disciplines as diverse as massage therapy and private investigation, the private career college readies pupils for long-term success in their chosen field. Yet the school expands its scope beyond career tracks, offering the casual learner an arsenal of new skills. The culinary department, for example, takes two forms: by day, Red Seal–certified cooking instructors train full-time students to become chefs in restaurants and hotels, but by night, they oversee proteges' first steps into the kitchen or second steps back into the kitchen after realizing they left their headlights on. In comprehensive workshops, students learn to properly sauté, simmer, and bake dishes so that they can treat their family to a nice meal or throw a fitting party for a foodie friend.
As the award-winning artist behind Confidence Through Creativity, Julie Wurtele draws on the knowledge she gained in England while studying for her fine arts degree, as well as her studies at the Dundas Valley School of Art. Using art therapy, she helps students overcome learning challenges and anxiety, help them express themselves, and to feel more confident. She's dually certified to help anyone, everyone from kids to seniors to senior accountants.
Julie, a member of the Burlington Fine Arts Association, regularly exhibits her work in galleries across southern Ontario. In her spare time, she leads an independent consortium of artists and paints acrylic landscapes of her travels and writes music.
The kitchens at KidsCanCook fill with the chatter of whisks against bowls and hands clapping in excitement at new abilities. The instructors introduce children of all ages to the fundamentals of cooking, focusing each and every recipe on nutrition to forge healthy habits. The interactive weekend and after-school classes impart the basics of cooking to children or young adults, from measuring ingredients to keeping chef hats from becoming tangled in chandeliers. The chefs also offer private lessons, and full- or half-day summer camps with included meals engage students with hands-on activities and help build new friendships.
Founded with the goal of introducing pupils of all ages to the visual arts, Bronte Art Academy coaxes forth the inner Renoirs within all those who enter the studio during a host of hands-on lessons and camps. Under the capable direction of Paul Ross Sandilands, a local portrait artist who has taught at the Ontario College of Art & Design and served as a painting companion to Canadian artist Harold Town, budding masters explore their potential with a variety of artistic media, from watercolour to graphite. Paul also shares his knowledge, techniques, and passion for creative expression during in-studio sessions, where students can create their own take-home masterpieces portraying family, the ocean at sunset, or Roger Clemens as a 19th-century robber baron.
Experiencing art shouldn't confined to a museum or a fancy gallery. That's the idea behind Everyday Art, a center that corrals people of all artistic skills into environments where they can feel free to create their own masterpieces. Through adult classes and children's summer camps, the school encourages play and experimentation as students add their own twists to classic or original works. Some classes even meet around town in pubs or parks, prime spots for creative inspiration or showing squirrels a skill set they will never, ever have.