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CHS Pics | With more space to teach ‘how to be an adult,’ DIY community The Works expands on 12th Ave

A 12th Ave space for learning “the basics” of a life on earth — like being able to sew a rad patch on your jacket or make pickles — has expanded.

“If you didn’t grow up in a house where you got to learn this kind of stuff, where else are you going to learn it?” posits Kellie Phelan of The Works.

The “DIY hands-on community” its expansion earlier this month at 12th and Fir just above the busy with construction and redevelopment Yesler Terrace.

The expanded, flagship studio, class space, and retail shop is also home to “zero waste” grocer Scoop Marketplace.

The mixed ethos of sustainability and DIY fit together nicely. “We teach a little bit of everything. We can teach you how to grow a garden, turn that garden into pickles,” Phelan says.

Home to a busy schedule of classes and workshops, The Works also features sessions with local experts including chefs, artists, and more. Most of the sessions have a small fee for a small format, close contact teaching experience, usually around $50 per person.

A lot of what The Works teaches is “how to be an adult,” Phelan says. But much of it also a lot of fun even as you add grown-up level knowledge. It’s also a good way to live a more sustainable and, yes, affordable lifestyle with a focus on keeping things simple.

“We’re not really a cooking school but we’re looking to share those essential skills,” Phelan says.

The Work is located at 151 12th Ave. You can learn more and see a full schedule of classes and events at

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1 year ago

This is a pretty great idea! I was fortunate to grow up in an environment where the whole “home economics” thing was still part of the collective consciousness. I’m always finding out that my younger friends simply didn’t grow up with that at all and have no clue about things that I always considered to be basic life skills.

Seeing stuff on basic troubleshooting and repair of electronics and appliances and stuff would also be really helpful for a lot of people. So much electronic waste occurs because we’ve been trained that it’s easier to just throw stuff out and replace it rather than to try to get it working again.

mary o
mary o
1 year ago

Check out the Capitol Hill Tool Library online ~ 1552 Crawford Place 98122 You can borrow all kinds of tools and they have a “repair café” every now and then and there are volunteers to assist / repair items ~ all of this for $$ donations.
I had a 3 way lamp rewired few weeks ago. Everyone there is so very helpful and friendly. Awesome place!!!