It’s hard to miss Monique Saenz Myers as she travels through neighborhoods in Boulder County toting a large white trailer decorated in pink and purple bubbles.
The COVID-19 pandemic forced Saenz Myers to close Exploring Textiles, her original sewing studio located on a farm. Instead, she pivoted and opened Bubbles Sewing and Arts School, a traveling arts classroom meant to meet families where they are.
The trailer, which Saenz Myers affectionately called the “hunting lodge” when she purchased it in November 2020, has been converted into a mobile classroom with two 6-foot work benches where students can spread out and work on projects. Saenz Myers stocks it with fabrics of all colors, Bernina sewing machines, cutting tools and any other supplies an artist might need.
For nearly a year, she’s taught classes outside of homes across the county, including Boulder, Longmont, Erie and Superior.
The way Saenz Myers sees it, her mobile classes provide parents with a 90-minute respite and kids with a fun and creative hands-on activity in a time that’s been isolating and stressful for all.
During a Friday afternoon class in Longmont, Emma Hill sat at one of the benches in the trailer, intently focused on sewing a green and blue blanket for her family’s new pug puppy. It’s likely her favorite project to date.
Emma isn’t new to sewing. She took pre-pandemic classes. However, when her original classes stopped during the pandemic, Emma quickly signed up for a regular session with Bubbles Sewing and Arts School.
When it comes to explaining what she loves most about sewing, it’s hard for Emma to narrow it down.
“I like it all,” she said.
For Saenz Myers, this is what it’s all about. She never expected to wind up teaching younger people how to sew, but the endeavor has surprised her. So far, her students have made everything from mask wallets meant to store their masks to reading pillows and stuffed animals.
“It’s rewarding for me,” she said. “It’s fun sharing a skill.”
The projects are driven by the students, and Saenz Myers said her classes are flexible and very much dependent on a sewer’s skill level. Her students inspired Bubbles’ design, too. They chose the cheerful pink and purple bubbles that adorn the outside of the trailer and the softer shades of pink and purple that color the inside.
As an instructor, Saenz Myers hopes her traveling art classes will be an escape and that the projects encourage her students to think critically and consider creative ways to get from one point to the next. But more than anything?
“I want it be fun,” she said.
To learn more about Bubbles Sewing and Arts School, visit funinbubbles.com.