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Sew Productive: New store in Acton to serve the sewing community

Sew Productive, Acton's newest retailer, opened its doors on Wednesday with the aim of supplying everything for the sewing arts community. The enterprise is the brain child of Melinda Noble. Besides featuring colourful bolts of fabric and state-of-the-art machines, she's also hoping that her completely accessible shop will serve as a learning hub for local crafters, knitters and sewers.

“I want it to be a place where people can gather and share a passion.” she said. “People quilt and sew, and they often do it for others. When I worked the indoor farmers market last year people were asking for a shop of some kind and a place to take classes.”

Don't let the address fool you. Although it's officially 47 Mill Street East, the entrance is through a side door off John Street at what was once the Links2Care offices. But even before Noble hung up her shingle, her business already had an on-line presence offering classes for beginners and intermediate sewers.

In the near future Noble is hoping to also offer classes in knitting, crocheting and even rug-hooking. The store also has a large cutting table with a projector so people can purchase patterns on-line and bring them in for cutting. “I'll be featuring digitalized patterns that people can download.” she said.

Noble is also planning on turning her back wall into an area where vendors can display products for sale. “Things like confections, speciality soaps and hand-made crafts from knitters and crocheters,” she added.

She also stressed the fact that Sew Productive “is completely accessible with hydraulic tables, accessible to every age range and ability.”

Noble describes herself as a jack-of-all-trades. The former human resources consultant has a background in sewing and embroidery, manufactures boat enclosures and awnings, and is also a qualified sewing machine technician. Although not a native to Acton she's been here 9 years and isn't planning on leaving. “I love the sense of community and the fact that people are open to this kind of entrepreneurship. I've had a very warm response.”

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