What we do
Welcome to Empire Make Space, a collaborative sewing studio and reclaimed fabric store.
At Empire Make Space we purchase deadstock and scrap fabrics from designers, the film industry, and textile-waste diversion organizations like Creative Re-use Toronto to make accessible to the eco-conscious consumer at an affordable price. Our aim is to repurpose these discarded fabrics and notions, keep them out of landfills, and turn them into something beautiful.
In the fashion industry when a designer or costuming department orders more fabric than they end up using this fabric, often called deadstock, can sit on shelves for years and eventually may end up in landfill.
We have a full working sewing studio and retail space selling fabric, notions, and small batch produced clothing and accessories. During regular business hours the retail store is open to customers and our studio space is available for rent by the hour. The studio also houses production of our two clothing lines; the already established Little Love Birds line of upcycled children’s goods and the ever-evolving items produced by our collaborative workshops. In the evenings our large workshop space hosts a variety of maker-led events and workshops and is available to rent by the hour or for the evening.
COMING SOON: Our other main focus at Empire Make Space is offering sewn product manufacturing workshops in a micro-factory setting. Instead of customers slowly learning to make one item for themselves, members come together to create items using the incredibly fast and efficient Batch Sewing method, typically used in sewing factories. Each participant works as part of a collaborative assembly line and is assigned one step in the production process. This allows for people of all skill levels to participate in being a part of the creating process. Whether you are an experienced sewist or someone who has never touched a sewing machine, there is a place for you on the production team.
In our workshops we use sustainable deadstock and remnant fabrics to sew items in large batches. Workshop participants regardless of their skill level get to take home an item they had a hand in creating, and the excess products are sold in our retail store and online. The sales of those items subsidize the workshops themselves, making them more accessible, and a portion of all sales goes directly to charities, chosen by workshop participants.