• Frequently Asked Questions •
About Tchad LLC
About The Workroom
About This Site
About Sewing Classes
About Workshops
About Design
About Our Philosophy
General Policies
About Tchad LLC
What is Tchad LLC?
Tchad is a design studio, workroom, and atelier located in Chicago - on the border of Uptown and Lakeview. It was founded in 2000 by Tchad Elliott, a Chicago designer, who felt that there was a need for a more urban and sophisticated style of sewing instruction. Since then, he has expanded the business to include workshops and language study groups as well as a number of not-for-profit operations.
How can I get in touch with Tchad?
Email us through the contact link on this page.
Where are you located?
We are located in Chicago, Illinois at the intersection of Sheridan Rd. and Montrose. Our address is 4403 N Sheridan, Suites #201-209.
What are the nearest CTA options?
If you are using the bus, you can take the #36 Broadway or the #151 Sheridan to Montrose.
You can take the #145 or #146 to Montrose and walk three blocks West as well.
If you are taking the train, you can get off at the Sheridan stop on the red line and walk 6 blocks North, or you can get off at the Wilson stop and walk three blocks South. Since the Wilson stop rehab, you can also take the exit at Target on Sunnyside and walk one block South.
Do you have a parking lot?
We do not have a parking lot or designated parking.
Can I park in the Jewel or Target lots?
We cannot and do not recommend that you park in the Jewel or Target lots. We cannot be held responsible if you decide to park in either lot.
Is the street parking permit-only?
Street parking is open and permit free on Montrose and Sheridan. Broadway between Montrose and Lawrence has metered parking with a maximum time limit of 2 hours.
When can I come visit?
We usually discourage visitors to protect both our students’ privacy as well as the flow of the day. If you insist on visiting outside of class time: We operate by appointment only, so we ask that you email first.
What do you mean when you say you are a private workroom?
We are a private workroom in the sense that we are not open to the general public.
When are your hours?
Our hours are by appointment only.
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About This Site
Why is it monochromatic?
We are trying to keep the site simple and limit the amount of visual clutter. We are going for content over form right now.
Tchad LLC is essentially a one-man-show right now, so updates do not happen as frequently as we would like them to. If you are concerned about an update to schedules, feel free to contact us.
So do we! After we are finished coding the site, we will be uploading pictures of our design work, class and student projects, as well as images of the workroom. Please be patient.
When are you going to finish?
At the risk of a little snark: Sometimes it looks like the answer is "never", my friend.
I see a spelling/grammar/style/usage error! Do you want me to tell you?
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About the Workroom
Where is the Workroom located?
The workroom is located at 4403 N. Sheridan Rd. #201-209. We are on the NE corner of the intersection.
How long have you been there?
We have been at the Sheridan workroom since 2004.
I am standing outside and want to come in! The door is locked! Where are you?
There is every chance that we are here, but cannot hear you. When there aren't classes or fittings scheduled, it is not uncommon for us to either have the music up too loud while we work or have power tools in use. Or both. If you are here for your class, text us and we will have you let in.
Is there an elevator?
Unfortunately, the building at 4403 is a vintage 2 floor walkup and does not have an elevator.
How big is your space?
We have two large classrooms that are approximately 14x32 and 16x32 as well as offices and storage.
Tell me a little about the building?
We are fond of this old thing.
Construction started on the Sheridan-Montrose just before the stock market crashed in 1929. It was originally intended to be as tall as the building just North - about 11 floors. When the market crashed, they decided to use the money left in the construction budget to add better finishes to the two floors already completed instead of building up.
What other businesses are in your building?
A number of businesses call it home. There is an attorney, three clothing and softline designers, a commercial artist, two fine artists, a labor union organizing unit, a payphone company, a horse management company, daycare, diner, medical supply house, and a music production company.
Do you live there?
The space we have here is work-only. We do not live here.
Does anyone else live there?
The only people who live in the building are the maintenance people.
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About Sewing Classes
When do they start?
See the schedule on the classes link.
What is the process to enroll?
After you have decided which day and time works best for you, let us know through email. If there is space, we will reserve your spot for you and give you payment options.
How long are they?
Classes run for ten weeks. Each class is three hours long.
Do I need my own machine?
No, the workroom at Tchad has classroom machines which you may use while you are in class. Currently we use the Brother CS6000 as our classroom machine, but there are a number of other machines here for you to try out if you'd like.
Who takes these classes?
Our demographic tends to skew younger, female, and professional. Our average age range is 25-40. Because we have developed these classes for a more urban environment, we tend to steer away from denim vests and appliqué and use techniques that give you a more fashionable, wearable garment. These are not your gramma’s classes, although she would be more than welcome. We have had students as young as nine and as old as 80. Regardless of your demographic, the overriding philosophy is fashion and solid technique.
How much are they?
Classes are $500.00 each.
Why are they $500.00?
The price of classes comes to $50.00 per 3 hour class, or $16 per hour of instruction.
Our instructor, who gives private lessons, charges $25.00 per hour of instruction.
The same classes given privately (one on one) would be $750.00.
How many people are in each class?
In order to provide you with a comfortable and productive learning environment, we at Tchad are limiting the class size to six student per instructor. We have found that this size allows you to interact in an unhurried, productive way.
What if I have to miss a couple of classes?
Our instructor is quite flexible about missed classes. Students are welcome to make other arrangements because of emergencies, vacations, &c. We will do our best to accommodate you. See the policies for more information.
What will we sew?
In the basic classes, you will sew a basic garment of your choice. Through a series of emails before the class begins, your instructor will explain pattern sizes and brands as well as basic tools and preferences.
If you are an intermediate or advanced sewer, we will work on projects of your choice.
What will I learn?
In the basic class: A solid range of basic sewing knowledge. From patterns to fabrics to basic sewing techniques, you will leave this class with the knowledge to begin other projects without a cloud of doubt floating over your head.
In the intermediate class: You will learn how to focus and finish your garments better than you did before, as well as begin to understand the reasons behind your technique.
Where are they held?
In the workroom at Tchad, at the corner of Montrose and Sheridan. Because you will be taking classes in a functioning sewing and fashion workroom, you will be getting a lot of hands-on experience with techniques and supplies.
Do I need to know how to sew?
If you are interested in Basic classes, no. If you are interested in Intermediate classes, then a certain proficiency with a machine and some prior sewing experience is helpful.
What is the structure and format of the basic class?
The first two to three weeks of the basic classes involve some technical background information about patterns, fabric and sewing machines. We try to give you a sense of proper terminology and techniques and cover the universality of sewing machines. After the first two to three weeks, the class is about you and your project. There is no set structure after the preliminaries have been covered. You can work at your own pace.
What is the structure of the intermediate and/or advanced class?
The intermediate classes have no set structure. When you register, you will discuss with your instructor what you would like to learn and then set up goals based on that. You can go as fast or as slow as you would like.
I only want to learn how to alter my clothes!
Alterations on their own don't usually work very well for classes. In our basic and intermediate classes, we cover all of the alteration techniques you should need in the context of a project.
I only want to do pillows or home furnishings!
Your classes seem too expensive/long/not what I'm looking for!
-or even-
I don't know that this is a good fit for me.
If you only want to do a few pillows, small things, or just don't know if the tone of our classes will work for you, there are a number of other teachers and buisnesses in Chicago that may be able to get you where you need to be: Jo-Ann's, The Needle Shop, EWS Academy, or Lill Street.
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About Workshops
What is a workshop?
A workshop is a smaller class that focuses on a specific creative technique.
Are they sewing specific?
Not necessarily. In our workshop category, you will find a little bit of everything - chair caning, Sari blouses, drapery, basic hand sewing, oil painting, and sewing machine tutorials.
What workshops are you offering this or next quarter?
See our Workshops page for scheduled techniques, days, and times.
What is the process to enroll?
If you see a technique or project that interests you, contact us for availability. If we still have space, we will get you registered.
What supplies do I need?
Each workshop will have a basic supply list when you register.
What is the price of a workshop?
Prices for workshops are listed on the Workshops page.
Where are they held?
In the workroom at Tchad, at the corner of Montrose and Sheridan.
Why are they so varied in subject?
Our philosophy demands it!
Can we suggest workshops?
We would love to hear suggestions for workshops! Because we are perpetually curious ourselves, hearing your ideas would be great!
What are some of the workshop ideas you are working on already?
We are in the planning stages of a number of workshops: Millinery, stitch book construction, drafting, and a couple score more!
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About Design
Where is your store?
We do not operate a store, boutique or satellite location.
What boutiques are you in?
We do not sell to boutiques or do a retail trade.
When are you coming out with a line?
We don't show lines or seasons of clothing.
Our design concept is that a garment should be just as viable when it is made as it will be 30 years from now. To that end, we develop small groups that are available until ten of them have been sold. Once ten have been made and sold, then the garment does not get made again.

How do I get something made?
Contact us to schedule a meeting.
Do you do bridal?
Generally, we do not do bridal.
Do you do alterations?
We do not do alterations or tailor clothing. If you are in the Chicago area, we cannot recommend Barry-Regent cleaners highly enough.
What is the process?
We try to keep the process friendly and fairly informal. Our first meeting, we will talk about shapes, colors, sizes, fabrics and get a general feel for where you want to be. After that, we build on the process through muslin or toile fittings.
How long does it take?
We ask for a minimum of 4-6 months from first meeting to final product. More complex garments can take more time.
What does it cost?
Price varies greatly based on fabric, size, shape, and any other number of variables. We discuss price at the end of our first appointment.
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About Our Philosophy
What is your business philosophy?
We have been told our business philosophy is particularly un-buisiness-like:
"There is always enough for everyone, so don't be stingy, greedy, or common."
What is your personal philosophy?
That we are all responsible for adding to the level of intelligence and competence in the world.
What is your design philosophy?
As strange as it may be to read it, we try not to have one. "Create something that is at least interesting" comes close.
Why do you teach in addition to your regular work?
We strongly believe that the world only becomes a better place through education - whether that education is in dressmaking, Latin, or horsemanship. Any time you teach or learn something you are adding to the whole of humanity.
That's a little high-flown, isn't it?
Well, yes. But we are unapologetic.
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General Policies
Could you provide us with references?
We never release the names or information of our clients or students. We feel that it is a violation of their trust and privacy. We would refer you to Yelp, Facebook, Instagram, or Google.
What payment options do I have?
We accept payment in cash, check, or credit card.
What is your return/refund policy?
For clothing and custom design: We do not accept returns. Your garment comes with a lifetime fit guarantee.
For classes and Workshops: If the cancellation was initiated by Tchad LLC, you have the option to reschedule your class or receive a full refund.
Otherwise: We are more than happy to schedule make-up classes. Refunds are not given once classes start.
What is your make-up policy for classes?
Generally, we ask that any make-up classes are scheduled during the current session. We cannot guarantee that we will be able to accommodate you after your session has run its course.
Are there exceptions to that?
We understand that life gets in the way and things happen, so of course there are exceptions. We do, however, reserve the right to define and limit those exceptions that fall outside of the general rules and guidelines.
What is your policy if my check gets returned?
Returned checks are charged a $30 fee.
What happens if Tchad LLC cancels a class?
You have the option of rescheduling it for another quarter, rescheduling it within the current quarter, or receiving a full refund.
What is the process to enroll in classes, workshops, or study groups?
Contact us through email to find out availability. If there is still room, then you register (essentially tell us: Yes! Sign me up!), pay, and we send out all of the supporting information (supply lists, introductions, &c).
Can we call you to talk about classes?
All of our correspondence is done through email.
I want to register for classes! Why haven't I heard anything?
Once you have emailed us through the website, your email goes into a queue that is answered on a first come, first served basis. Once your queue comes up, you receive an email about what is still available.

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