Sew Club provides camaraderie and creative outlet

Photo by Sue Suchyta
Wyandotte residents Kelly Hickey (top) and Matt Dudzinski (below) work on a project at Sew Club, which meets from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays at Bacon Memorial Library in Wyandotte. The pair started the group a year ago after taking a beginning sewing class together so they could help and encourage each other and sewers of differing experience levels when working on projects.


Times-Herald Newspapers

WYANDOTTE – Creating a robot ballerina Halloween costume for his 3-year-old daughter, Ellie, inspired Wyandotte resident Matt Dudzinski to take his first sewing class a year ago.

Joining him was Kelly Hickey of Wyandotte, whose 4-year-old daughter, Evelyn, craves princess dresses.

The two originally met during preschool story time at Bacon Memorial District Library. When they tried to decide whether to invest in a second sewing class, youth librarian Kelly Ray suggested they form a group instead and meet free-of-charge in a library meeting room.

They originally started Sew Club (a name inspired linguistically by “Fight Club”) with six participants, including Peggy Kelly of Wyandotte, an experienced sewer who helps novices with challenging chores like installing zippers. The three remain consistent participants.

Dudzinski, a laid-off interior designer, is currently a stay-at-home dad for Ellie and her 9-month-old sister, Chloe. His blog,, chronicles his adventures.

He said his mother always made Halloween costumes for him when he was growing up, and he always likes to try new things.

“It’s a creative outlet,” Dudlinski said. “I get to be creative but it’s almost like my own therapy.”

Hickey enjoys making both princess dresses and everyday clothes for her daughter. When she sews at home, she said her daughter asks if the item is for her, and peppers her with questions.

She made an “Alice in Wonderland” Halloween costume for Evelyn last season, which cold weather prevented her from wearing. She hopes the costume will still fit for this year’s trick-or-treating.

Like Dudzinski, Hickey has a mother who sews, but prior to last year, she had not sewed.

“I never really got into it,” Hickey said. “I was afraid of the sewing machine.”

She said her biggest challenge now is deciding what fabrics to buy and what projects to pursue next, adding that she finds sewing therapeutic and relaxing.

“It’s much less intimidating than I thought it was going to be,” Hickey said. “If you just relax it seems much easier than trying to force (the fabric) through. There is a lot more give and take (with sewing projects) than it seems there would be.”

She is not sure what her dream project might be, but a quilt is on the short list.

Hickey encourages others to join Sew Club for the fellowship and to find a creative outlet.

“Come do something interesting,” Hickey said. “Make something yourself. We welcome anybody to join us, (at) any skill level. Come hang out, be creative with us, have fun.”

Sew Club meets from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays in an air-conditioned meeting room on the second floor of Bacon Library, 45 Vinewood. Call the library at 734-246-8357 for more information.