We met up with Sarah Lin, current Cañada student, and Chief Blankie Crafter for Ellie Fun Day to learn more about why she’s taking classes at Cañada and what she does with her company, Ellie Fun Day.

Cañada Fashion Department (CFD): Why did you start classes at Cañada in the first place?

Sarah Lin (SL): I always had a hankering to make my own clothes and I wanted to start my own baby blanket business. 

CFD: What certificate are you aiming for?

SL: Custom Dressmaking, AA

CFD: What did you do before Cañada?

SL: I was a Design Director for a graphic design firm

CFD: When did you decide to start Ellie Fun Day?

SL: The idea was ruminating for about 5+ years. I quit my full-time job in 2010, took a little sabbatical and started to go full-force into EFD in Spring 2011. See my blog post here.

CFD: How have your classes and Cañada experience helped you in your business?

SL: I have learned amazing skills (from sewing, design & textiles) that I’ve used to teach marginalized women. This is currently transforming their lives so that they have a chance for economic empowerment. I deal daily with textile mills and I need to know my quality of fabrics that I’m looking at. My sewing construction skills have also saved me a lot of money since I like to make my own samples. When I work with my sewing co-ops I can look at the construction issues and problem solve with them. 

CFD: Do you have anything else to add?

SL: I’m really passionate on educating the next generation about sustainable design and fair and ethical sourcing. With the Bangladesh garment factory catastrophe, I really hope that our education system teaches us what it means to design responsibly and also purchase with the some ethos.

I also really like this book, The Sustainable Fashion Handbook and I’m a member of the Ethical Fashion Forum. It’s not about being trendy or being green, it’s about being responsible as a designer because this world is slowly being depleted of our resources. At the rate that landfills and rivers are being filled, we are going to lose our earth before we die. There are designers out there that are trying to use as little waste as possible in their patterns. That is design innovation at its best. 

CFD: Thank you, Sarah!

Sarah Lin