Uncomfortable at classes

Old 11-28-2017, 03:34 PM
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as Terry said , most people attend classes with friends, and they go to have a good time and learn something. you are going alone and are expecting a class with a teacher and a plan. It's just different expectations.
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Old 11-28-2017, 03:50 PM
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I think you're right, that the problem is lack of confidence. Taking a friend along, like Sleepy Hollow suggested, might help with that. Also remember that the other people in the class are probably not even thinking about how you're doing with the class work, because they're also trying to keep up. It's not unusual to feel a little frazzled when you're trying to learn something in a group, because everyone learns in a different way and at a different pace. Don't be so hard on yourself!

I sometimes feel like I've fallen behind in class, but then I look around and can usually spot at least one other person with that "deer in the headlights" look (sometimes it's the whole class). That means it's time to get the instructor's attention to help us out. I don't expect to be the one who finishes first, or the one whose project looks nicest. As for equipment, I usually bring a cheap older (not vintage) Singer, rather than lug my better machine to class. And unless someone else has an unusual vintage machine, I don't notice what machine or supplies they are using. If the shop owners are making you feel like your machine doesn't match up, then shame on them!
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Old 11-28-2017, 08:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Terry in the ADK View Post
So sorry you are having disappointment in classes. I find them to be a wonderful experience once I decided what I really wanted out of them . Sometimes I am looking to do a particular quilt, sometimes a technique ,sometimes the experience of attending a class from a particular teacher and sometimes to motivate me passed a sticking point. But the best reason for me to attend a class is to go with friends and have a good time! I usually don't even plan to get the project finished, just to learn Something! I have found the most productive classes to be those where I get pre-class cutting instructions so we can start "producing" more quickly.

Another thing I enjoy is "sit and sews" where I bring my own project and work at my pace...no competition but usually good advice, help and encouragement if I need it. You may want to give them a try.
exactly how I feel about classes--i enjoy them and never plan to make an entire project partly because I visit too much!
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Old 11-28-2017, 09:13 PM
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Thank you all for your helpful suggestions. I like the idea of trying to take a class with a friend. I do tend to sign up alone. I will work on my confidence because I know it is self defeating. I have signed up for a number of Craftsy classes, so I should use those more. And , I agree about YouTube tutorials. They are great! I just Love this Quilting Board. I always know you will have super advice And support!!!! Thank you again!

Last edited by QuiltnNan; 11-29-2017 at 01:58 PM. Reason: remove shouting/ all CAPS
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Old 11-28-2017, 09:21 PM
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MaryMo, you are right on! It does remind me of being in school and never feeling good enough. It is sad ☹️
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Old 11-28-2017, 10:43 PM
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I love taking classes. I will check out the other sewing machines, but it is not in a 'who's got the best' way. I am just interested in what people sew with. Last weekend there were 3 Janomes and 2 Phaffs.

At one quilt shop when I have taken classes, everyone else seems to know each other, but that is ok. Sometimes I am slow, sometimes I am quick, sometimes I am stumped. Last weekend I took a class, it was expensive and small (5 students), but I learned quite a bit and completed my top. I also was able to help a couple of my classmates, when they got stuck as I had more general sewing experience than they did. I learned how to work with 45 degree diamonds and sew a halfway decent Y seam. Ok the last 2 of 6 Y seams looked ok, the other 4 may have an embellishment on them. I also got some great advice on colour placement.

I left my machine for my friend who was hosting the workshop, to use to finish her quilt as she did not have a walking foot for her machine. She also wanted to make another top and was having a challenge with her 1/4 inch seams on her machine.

I love to get up during a workshop and see what everyone is working on and how they are getting on with their project. I am in awe of how the same project can look so different when made up in different colours.

I feel sad for those who do not feel good enough at a workshop. Remember everyone started not knowing how to sew and builds their skills over time. Just because someone's skill is more advanced than yours, does not make you inferior to them. I have learned that asking the more advanced quilters for help, or suggestions is a great way to break through any high school clichés.

I am not a fast sewer, I rarely finish a project in a class, I do not go into a class expecting to finish it there, but to finish at home. I go to learn new techniques. I have learned that although I love YouTube videos and Craftsy lessons, I learn best in person when I can ask questions.
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Old 11-29-2017, 02:56 AM
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I am frequently behind -- sometimes I keep working and ignore those around me and sometimes I stop and work on something else I am doing. In our sewing group, I mostly work on my own projects. However, I never take it personally. I think it sometimes bothers the instructor more than me. I actually prefer sewing in my own space,
that way I have access to all my fabric and supplies; and, I usually have a need to tweak the pattern to make it my own.

In a group setting, they frequently frown on this. What can I say, the older I get, the more of a rebel I become.
Age is certainly a freeing experience.
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Old 11-29-2017, 02:58 AM
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I too like the Craftsy classes and YouTube videos because I can rewind and watch steps multiple times. I do take quite a few classes at my local JoAnn’s. I’ve found an instructor I like and I’m a beginner.......I need all those helpful little hints you experienced sewers do without thinking. But they move tooooo fast for me and I make a lot of mistakes. I go home and repeat the process with better results than I get in class. I wish they’d give the cutting instructions in advance! There is a core group that seem to be in every class I take. They seem nice enough but obviously know each other based on intimate details I don’t need to know about their lives.
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Old 11-29-2017, 03:16 AM
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From the teacher's point of view, it is very difficult when there are "know it alls" or extremely needy people in the group. I used to teach hand applique at a couple of quilt shops, and it was a lot of fun when everyone participated and was supportive of everyone else. The last time I taught one person hogged the show - kept interrupting, wanted my attention all the time, didn't allow others to speak, etc. It was exhausting and not worth the money I made (and spent right away at the shop!).

I belong to a small group that gets together monthly to hand sew, knit, embroider, etc. We all help each other and share tips and ideas. It's a lot less stressful and we learn from each other more informally.
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Old 11-29-2017, 05:48 AM
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I learn a lot at my guild and everyone is glad to see finished projects...perfect or not. No one feels superior. That’s a lot better than spending about $200 (between materials and fees) at a local shop to have other students act superior because they had the machine the shop sold. The shop project remains unfinished. I did high school with cliques and jerks. Never again! Between Missouri Star, the guild and Craftsy, my learning curve is good!
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