Earlier this month I taught at Art Unraveled and had such a great time working with these creative women. Maya and I left one hour ahead of schedule and we pulled into the parking lot, jumped out of the car laughing, carefree, excited to be early…and then (play DUN. DUN. DUN! music here) I opened the trunk of the car to find I left the suitcase of supplies at HOME!
Whoo, mujeres, I cussed up a storm (yes, the chica has meltdowns now and then, doesn’t everyone?) and then hot tailed it all the way back home. At one point I had to tell myself to calm down, the world won’t come to an end if my sewing class starts late. Life is too short to sprout an anger wrinkle. I figured I’d find a way to make it up to them. We were only 15 minutes late back to class, but no one seemed to mind. I walked into a room of smiling faces. We jumped right on task.
No one brought a sewing machine, but they brought lots of imagination and enthusiasm. I had my trusty Janome, thank goodness, and we made it work. Class ended at 9:30, but we left at 11 to make sure everyone had a finished bag. They all came out so cute!
One lovely lady, Theresa (I didn’t get a picture of her, darn!) – she flew in that morning from Maryland. She went to see our exhibit at the Heard Museum, and then had dinner, and then took my class and then flew back home in the morning. I am beyond flattered that she came all the way from across the country just to see our exhibit and take my sewing class. I am not worthy!
One of my sample projects.
So, you know me. I don’t use patterns. Many times I don’t even use rulers. I eyeball everything and this is exactly how I teach my students in my class. I swear, every time I have measured twice or used directions or a pattern, I mess it all up and end up doing it my own way. Ironic for a person who built a career typing up directions! I like to share projects that you can look at it and say “I think I can figure that out!” My theory is that if you can learn to go by your gut and exercise your common sense muscle, you can make anything work. You are letting your eye for design lead you. (Sometimes after a try or two).
At my class this night, I explained this to my students. Most of them mini-clapped in delight. Two nice ladies looked a bit worried though. They exchanged glances and broke out their rulers anyway and even irons from their hotel room! They asked me a lot of technical questions and I got a bit flustered. I was worried too, was I doing the right thing? I was just about to doubt myself, when a spray of light came across the main aisle of the room…
A lady runs into the class and runs up and throws her arms around me.
“Kathy! I took your fabric collage purse class last year and your patternless instructions have set me free! I’m making purses like crazy, and I eyeball everything, it is so freeing to let my instinct guide me. I just wanted to come and tell you thank you! I feel liberated!”
I just about cried my eyes out. Not only because of her kindness, but because the two worried ladies had a new light in their eyes, like they were excited to get going on their project! They ditched the rulers! And you should see what they made! One lady was so cute, she goes, “I want to make stripes! How about – Purple. Red. Purple. Red?”
“Yes!” I encouraged. “Color contrast rocks!”
“Ohhhh! WITH GREEN THREAD!!!” she squealed…
“YES! YES! YES!” I squealed back.
She was soooo happy. And that was just one of the students!
Ahhh. Sigh. I’m excited for next year’s AU!
NOTE: By all means, I am not saying to always ditch patterns or rulers. They are essential tools in crafting! What I’m saying is that it is OK freestyle now and then too. Each project is a different story, let it speak to you so you can get through it. It’s good to embrace both the discipline style and the freeform method! I just happen to be more comfy with the latter…
Well, have a super day everyone. Hope all of you encounter nice people in your travels!Love & light,