Friday, November 14, 2008

Belated rejoicing

So this is a bit overdue but thought I'd share my happiness at how well both my intro to sewing class and my free-style sewing nights are going.

Last intro class we worked on making seams and figuring out where the seam guides were on the machine plates. In a previous class with a couple careful crafters this one bit took most of the time. This time, with more experienced and adventurous students that took up ... five minutes. Maybe less. Fortunately that left extra time for picking fabrics for the little bags we made, reviewing pin safety and working with machine quirks (like thread-eating at the beginning of seams - greedy machine!), and even sewing a basic machine hem. And we had a lot of fun doing it! I love making little cloth bags since they're SO easy and yet look so posh and impressive. Students seem to love them just as much so it's a great second-class project. Build confidence, build skills!

Also last Friday I opened my apartment for what I'm calling a "Free Style Friday Sewing Night" (better name when one shows up) where, in theory, anyone who wants to come over and sew or embroider or knit or crochet or anything else fiber related can. I set up a cutting table, put out snacks, and part way through have a little demo or whatnot. At least that's the theory. The first night I had two experienced seamstresses who wanted to cut, sew, and chat and we wound up skipping the demo. That turned out to be for the best because THIS time I had two utter newbies who didn't really have anything to work on and so I pulled out the demo and showed them how to form the two most basic embroidery stitches, running and back stitch, to make embroidered coasters.

It was fabulous.

Attendee #1 is a tween who lives in the building and is in the difficult position of being the oldest kid in the building and sharing a bedroom and tiny apartment with two younger sisters. She's a fantastic young lady and I hope giving her individual time and a skill all her own helps her during what can't be a very fun period of life. I'm probably projecting since at that age we moved to a one-bedroom apartment and I shared a living room with my brother. Who was going through a Barney phase. I had the space under the side table as "my" room. I think I'm still traumatized. So, while trying to not shove all my childhood PTSD on her I do really enjoy the chance to spend time with her and give her a quieter place to spend some time. She'll be taking sewing lessons soon so expect to hear more! She sewed a very good first-time snowflake and the next day dropped by to show me her two newest creations. I wish I'd gotten pictures because she's got some serious talent.

The other drop-by had just come from Joann's to get material to make a pillow for her grandmother and wanted to embroider a monogram. Great timing! She's so encouraging, after I showed her the steps and she practiced for a bit she did a sample letter and was just so excited that it just made the whole night feel like a success. I saw her husband today and apparently she's telling everyone about her new l33t skillz and how they've changed her life. I didn't realize embroidery was so powerful but, hey, not going to argue! So it's been a good, warm-fuzzy time in the sewing studio. And smelly. I made up some aromatherapy heat bags yesterday and I think I overdid it on the essential oil. I just added 10 drops to the bag of rice, just like some suggestion somewhere said ... or so I thought. I think I'll go with two, maybe three drops next time. Until then, anyone have any tips on de-scenting some already sewn up bags? :)

1 comment:

Becky said...

The freestyle nights sound like a lot of fun! And that's great that you've got such a range of ages and experience. Especially that tween girl.