Brooklyn Fashion + Design Accelerator

Brooklyn Fashion + Design Accelerator


We've given grants to the following educational programs to support the development of today's workforce. 


Brooklyn Fashion+Design Accelerator Knitwear Apprenticeship

The apprenticeship is a hands-on experience training people to program, operate and maintain computerized, digital knitting machines. This educational endeavor ensures the availability and success of an advanced manufacturing workforce in New York City.  Trainees will learn operation and maintenance of Shima Seiki knitting machines, software programming, how to read tech packs, linking and finishing.

Upon completion of the program graduates are given assistance with job placement.

Learn more at Brooklyn Fashion + Design Accelerator

Fashion Institute of Technology Apparel Skills Courses

FIT offers apparel skills courses free of charge to anyone interested in working in the NYC fashion industry. Classes include Pattern Making, Sample Hand, Product Development & Introduction to Technical Design. The skills taught range from the most basic to a more comprehensive view of manufacturing. Students all begin with a prior knowledge of sewing and each course focuses on additional skills within the discipline, honing in on techniques for more complicated garments providing them the skills to be able to work within the local industry.

Course of Trade

Photo Credit: Avi Glickstein

Photo Credit: Avi Glickstein

Course of Trade is a non-profit offering free sewing instruction and job placement assistance in the garment industry. COT believes that sewing is a teachable and rewarding skill set and they aim to teach all those interested.  The goal is to build a portfolio of work and make the appropriate connections to factories in the five boroughs. The program is multilingual and takes place in a supportive environment based in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. No previous sewing experience is necessary.

The current training program is in partnership with the Women's Prison Association.  The WPA works with women at all stages of criminal justice involvement.  They promote alternatives to incarceration and help women living in the community to avoid arrest or incarceration by making positive changes in their lives.

Learn more at Course of Trade. 

SoHarlem Community training institute


SoHarlem (pronounced So Harlem) was founded by women in 2010 as a community-based social enterprise to connect people living in poverty to cultural industry opportunities that help them achieve economic self-sufficiency and their full potential.offering garment construction training.

NYC Fashion M.A.D.E. is proud to support their Community Training Institute’s apprentice program. This includes basic sewing, design, pattern-making, and tailoring techniques which are taught by industry experts. SoHarlem's commitment is to develop a workforce that can be gainfully employed in the garment construction industry. They offer this program to local community residents in need of training and employment. 

Learn more at SoHarlem.