Parlor Opens 2020 Ski Building Class Series

Ever wondered what it's like to build your own set of skis? Well here's your chance to find out.

Get ready to get an up close look at what goes into making a pair of skis. Photo courtesy of Parlor Skis

With summer here, and our spring turns cut short by COVID-19, ski season may be starting to drift to the wayside. But if you’re someone who eat, sleeps, and breaths skiing—and dreads the return of the hot summer days—then Parlor Skis might have the answer for you to get your ski fix this off-season.

Starting in July and running through September, Parlor Skis—a New England ski company based in Boston—will offer a ski building class for those who are interested in the art of ski building. If you have ever wondered what goes into designing and building skis and love getting hands-on experience, then look no further than this class.

Parlor Skis started their ski building class about five years ago to engage one-on-one with their clients, really getting to know the community of dedicated New England skiers that follow the brand. Since the first class five years ago, Parlor’s Ski Building Class has become a yearly tradition. It’s a completely immersive experience in which participants get to work side-by-side with a Parlor ski engineer to design and build their own set of skis. It blends hands-on engagement with a keenly engineered product and dialed system to produce a high-quality custom ski.

Work alongside a Parlor engineer to carefully craft your skis from start to finish. Photo courtesy of Parlor Skis

“It’s very in-depth, we take you through the whole thing,” says Mark Wallace, founder and manager of Parlor. “There are a couple of tolerance pieces that we are very hands-on with and there are some things that are done on our cutters ahead of time, but you go through every element of the build process while you are here,” 

Each participant will first go through a fit process to determine the ideal length, camber profile, and shape for their skis given their skiing priorities and style. They then will work with one of Parlor’s graphic designers to come up with a unique, custom design. Following these preliminary steps, a participant will get their hands dirty as they are guided through cutting out the bases, laying the edges into the ski, laminating and profiling the core, and more.

At the end of the course, participants will come away with a completely custom pair of world-class skis, providing customers with an experience to go along with the product they ride, and opening a window into what it’s like to be a ski builder for a couple of days. Wallace notes that the real goal is to “give people a sense of ownership and pride” and to let individuals “take part in creating their product.”

Walk away with a pair of custom skis you can be proud of. Photo courtesy of Parlor Skis

The class will be offered in a 2-day consecutive format with weekday and weekend options. This year, the classes are limited to 2 builders per session. Builders and staff are required to wear face coverings which will be provided by Parlor if needed. 

  • Cost: $1,750, includes ski fitting, custom graphics, skis, plus sandwiches, burritos, and beverages (beer included) while at Parlor’s factory in Boston.

Parlor’s Ski Building Course Video

For more information check out Parlor’s Build Class webpage.

This article was originally written in 2019 by Cara Redalen. It was updated for 2020 Ski Building Classes by Claire Barber.