Owner Of Tallgrass Tailor In Tulsa Talks About Growing Business, Teaching Others To Sew

A Tulsa tailor whose business has been growing for the past six years has altered her mission a bit, to help teach others the trade. Shaelynn Haning who created Tallgrass Tailor shared more about her journey and business with News On 6's Tess Maune.

Wednesday, January 17th 2024, 7:27 am

By: Tess Maune, News On 6


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Today on the Arca Continental Coca-Cola Southwest Beverages Porch, we're joined by a Tulsa tailor whose business has been growing for the past six years. She has altered her mission a bit, to help teach others the trade.

Shaelynn Haning who created Tallgrass Tailor shared more about her journey and business with News On 6's Tess Maune.

TESS: Tell us a little bit about Tallgrass Tailor!

SHAELYNN: So we are a tailoring and alteration service, which means we tailor and existing your current wardrobe to make it perfect fit for you.

TESS: And you're not from Oklahoma. You're from Pennsylvania. What brought you here?

SHAELYNN: So my husband is in the army. He's a major and originally brought us out here stationed at Fort Sill. And after getting stationed here quite a few times, we decided that Oklahoma was the place for us. We love the lifestyle.

TESS: So I love your story, because you got started in sewing in high school. Talk a little bit about that. And then you went on to college and got an apparel degree.

SHAELYNN: That's right. So I'm self taught in high school. At the time, there was no YouTube or cellphone. So I was able to kind of learn from the ground up and I worked with my dad. He's a welder. We built metal sculpture together. And then I got into sewing in college and got a degree in apparel design.

TESS: So it started here in Tulsa with just you. Now you have a staff of 11 or 12 people. And you also teach classes with an emphasis on educating immigrants in the sewing trade.

SHAELYNN: Yes, that's right. So our program with Rising Village and Refugee Sewing Enterprise Services is that we teach incoming women from countries all over the world how to sew in a basic 10 week program. And then take their skills from there to employment, either placed with me or anywhere else that we can place them in the community.

TESS: You have a YouTube page, and you have this camera that follows you around. And I was like, 'What is going on? Are we on reality TV here?' So talk about your YouTube page, because it's opening the opportunity for even more people to learn how to sew.

SHAELYNN: That's right. So we created the YouTube channel originally, because the translation options were incredible. There were over 50 languages that we could translate the captions to. This completely just removed the barrier of language. So now we have this incoming population with an incredible skill that can be used immediately coming into this country and a need. We have a need here in this country. And we were able to bridge that gap with the YouTube channel. And now we just film gosh, we film anything. We've got crazy projects going on every day. So we just, we just tipped over 25,000 subscribers so it's really, really blossomed and grown.

TESS: It will keep growing I'm sure. Why is it important for you to teach others how to sew? I mean, it's your business. You want more people out there knowing how to do it.

SHAELYNN: Yes, and I find that less and less people are coming into the industry. There is not a great place to go and learn and even find out about sewing in general. Even if you're not interested in learning yourself. Just being exposed to it. There are less opportunities and YouTube has really expanded our ability to get the word out there that sewing is not a dying art. It is very much thriving and it is accessible to everyone and entertaining.

CLICK HERE to learn more about Tallgrass Tailor. CLICK HERE to view the YouTube channel, The Sew Show with Shae.

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