Well, as promised, I have a few pictures to share from my sewing class. I hate to be corny, but I can resist! We are having SEW MUCH FUN!!!
Yesterday the ladies were here, well some of them--7 ladies in all. Ann, Sunita, Erika, Kristy, Don Nhim, Rosie and Joy. Sunita is new to the class. And then a couple ladies could not make it because of sickness (it is that time of year around here).
Anyway, we spent the day laughing, eating, chatting and sewing. Most everyone completed another project. I decided that it was really important for people to be able to leave each lesson with a completed project, atleast in the beginning. I know for myself, my excitement is always escalated when I finish something up. It is a wonderful feeling to have something lovely to show for your time and to show off!! :) I think it is working. The girls are so excited about sewing and they have all become huge fans of fabric. Converts! It has been fun for me to share my passion for fabric and sewing with my friends. And now, I have loads of ladies to chat endlessly about fabric with. They get it. They see why I love it so! They are so hooked and I am too. This teaching thing is really fun!
Okay, now for some pics. I am not one to stop and stage things to make those pretty pictures. So sorry for the lack of styling here. But I hope you'll agree that the girls are lovely and so are their completed projects. :)
Here is Ann. Ann is a cutey! Full of energy and she has the sweetest Southern drawl. Love it! She hails from Arkanasas and is an ordained minister. Her daughter is one of my Leah's best friends here...they are in the same class as well. Ann and I met the first week of school 2006. We were both new and she overheard me talking to some ladies about knitting. She is also a knitter, so we hit it off right away. Now she is a sewer too! The bag is her first project.
This was her first time joining us. She has already selected fabrics for her next 2 projects!
Here is Kristy.
Again...a super cutey! Such a sweetheart. Kristy comes from Singapore. Her son was in Leah's class last year. He is so gorgeous! She is probably one of the most generous people I know. She is always handing out sweeties to the kids on the playground after school. And she picks up little gifts throughout her travels and is always gifting something to one of us. At our first lesson, she gave me this beautiful tea towel from France and some ridiculously delicious tea from Harrod's of London. Yesterday, she brought in little porcelain thimbles for everyone. At the first lesson, Kristy made this fabulous tote.
She was afraid to mix up the fabrics at first, but then she totally got into it. It was her very first sewing experience ever! I think she did a stellar job. She was so convinced she could never do this. She was actually intending to just watch during the first lesson, but she dove in and really did awesome! She was probably the most excited and so very proud that she had actually made something herself. Yesterday, she made this little reversible tote for her son.
He apparently saw her bag and asked her to make something for him to carry his books in. We worked together to pick the fabrics and she did everything herself.
Next up is Erika, yet another cutey. Erika is from Belgium. Her daughter is also in Leah's class. We love Erika's hair. Red, curly and fabulous. Reminds me of Chaka Kahn. Erika helped me at school back in December when I went in to Leah's class to teach the kids how to sew. All the kids cut out and sewed their own Christmas stockings. They did amazing...they did not break my machines and noone got injured! Not bad for 19 kids that had never used a sewing machine...well 18, since Leah has. Anyway, Erika was excited at how easy it was and asked for some lessons. Her request is what initiated me doing the classes. Last week when Erika came, she spend most of her time looking at and selecting fabric! She was a bit overwhelmed with my stash!lol And again, was not so confident at first with combining different fabrics and colors. I helped her get fabrics together, and suggested the ribbon accent. Honestly, I think she was not so sure about the selections at first. But yesterday as her bag come together, you could see her lighting up!
I think the fabrics and the style are so her, and she agrees. After finishing her bag, she started selecting fabrics for future projects. Then she whipped up this headband for her hair. :)
I think she will be making about 100 of these things over the next months. She and I also share a love of scarves, so for her next project, I am designing a fun new scarf pattern (or 2) for her.
Finally is Don Nhim, who is from Korea.
Again, super cutey. She also has a son in 1st grade, but he has never been in any of Leah's classes. She I know each other from Mom's teas and lunches that are held every week. She usually carries around a lovely patchwork bag that her mom made for her. She was so frightened of the sewing machine though. During the first lesson, she made so much noise while sewing...omgosh, we were all just cracking up. I think she needed a massage after the lesson, because she was so tense sitting at the machine. But she finished up her bag and was in heaven!
Yesterday, she decided she wanted to make an apron. So I showed her how to cut an apron without using a pattern. She could not believe how easy it was. She picked some cute fabrics--the apron is for her 12 year old daughter (so she said, I think she kept it for herself!). She did an excellent job, don't you think?
For her next project, she wants to make matching oven mitts, so I'll be making up a simple pattern for her to do that. :)
Oh, I can't forget about Rosie. She is from England. She is a total cutey and a real fire ball! She keeps us in stitches throughout the class. And she is an amazing baker. I am addicted to her Victoria Sponge Cake---yumm! I'll have to see if she will give me the recipe to share with you all. Rosie had not sewn much before--hemming curtains was the extent of her experience and I think she said she made a track suit? But that did not stop her from designing her first project and making up a pattern. She forgot to bring it yesterday, so I don't have a picture to share. Next time. Yesterday, she spent time helping others, and then selecting fabrics to start a stash of her own (girl after my own heart, huh?!) and for a simple patchwork quilt she wants to make for another of our friends that is pregnant right now (Leane from Russia, who was sick yesterday and could not come).
This is a silly picture of her with some scrap ribbon tied in her hair. She wore that thing the whole day. Silly goose!
My friend Joy was also here yesterday, but ran out before I remembered to snap pictures. She has made 4 totes so far! She has a bit of experience with the machine, but is enjoying learning my little tricks and tips on how to do things freestyle, with care. She is itching to get into the clothes making part, but we need a few more lessons before we go there, I think. I really want them to master the basics, and learn alot of essentials before we start working with patterns and designing clothes. I personally think most patterns can be really confusing and frustrating for beginners. And I don't want my girls getting discouraged! So we will be keeping it easy breezy lemon squeezy for now.
I should mention that all the projects were made without the use of any commerical patterns. I am showing them how to work with simple shapes and fabulous fabrics to create personalized items that they can feel really proud about creating. I think it is working. I'll have to start putting some effort in ahead of time now to keep things organized, as everyone starts to learn more and wants to venture off into new things. I'll be offering a second class starting in April...it will be for some of the teachers at Leah's school. I plan to put together an actual "sewing curriculum" if you will. I'll have a little book filled with tips, hints, basics, and then I'll be working with them week to week on projects designed by me. I will have them actually working on the same projects together. I think it will be easier and go more smoothly. Teaching teachers is making me nervous, but I think if I spend time thinking this through, it will be okay. I am getting so much practice with my friends though. I often find it difficult to explain every little step, because I just do things without thinking about it lots of the time. So this is such great practice for me and some of things I plan to do in the future. I am thankful for these ladies, for being my guinea pigs. :) The feedback is really invaluable. And as I said before, this whole experience is so incredibly energizing. I feel like me again. I haven't felt this way in a while. But I am ridiculously bubbly and focused, and productive. This really is just what I needed.
Okay, I'd better get off this thing. Laundry is calling my name!
Hope you all are having a fabulous day! Oh, and look forward to some fabric sneak peeks for the upcoming website update. Here is one picture of some of what's to come.