We’ve gotten so many inquiries about upcoming classes, it’s time to get this doggone schedule posted. Wouldn’t it be so great to sit down together at Starbucks and chat about what you want to learn? In all honesty, there’s a fairly narrow spectrum of what students want to learn–chairs, benches, ottomans, boxed and corded cushions, headboards, and the undying desire to redesign or update that iconic wingback chair. (A behemoth in my opinion, but to each his own.) As an upholstery teacher, let me explain how and why I choose the classes I do.
I used to just plan a class that anyone asked for. If students asked for cushion class, I said sure. They wanted a bench class–it’s done. And on and on. But the problem was that just adding classes that a select few desired, didn’t fill classes. I was depending on my in-the-know students to know what would sell seats at the proverbial upholstery workbench. It didn’t take long to figure out that I needed to do my own market research and gather important information.
I won’t bore you with the details of where I found the information, but what I discovered is as follows:
- People want a weekly class to attend, but not much more than six weeks.
- Other people like a three day concentrated class in which they THINK they can learn it all in 3 short days.
- People like one day workshops.
- People like two evening workshops, a week apart.
- People think they can learn how to upholster well in a just a few classes.
- People are happier than they thought they would be when they finally realize how difficult upholstering is.
- To leave a class with a finished, and fairly well done upholstered piece makes people feel very proud.
So there you have it. People have a limited attention span, they expect a lot out of themselves in a very short time, they get bored with a new endeavor quicker than they can learn how to do it well, and they really tire of upholstery quickly when they realize that it may just not be their thing. (That happened to me once with a I did kitchen designing class I took, so I get it.)
With all of that very basic information, the classes I’ve offered and continue to offer meet the needs of almost everyone. One class that is popular but very difficult to teach is a boxed and corded cushion class… a skill that takes lots and lots of practice. Students arrive with high expectations and no idea how difficult it is to create a perfectly executed boxed cushion. If I could, I’d teach this class as a number of lessons that build small skills and in the end they’d have an entire cushion. Sounds easy, right? Well, it’s just not at all.
Whether it’s high school or adult school, some students are more anxious to be the first one finished rather than to methodically learn the step by step instructions. If all of this was that easy, everyone would already know how to create their own patio furniture cushions, corded pillows, tufted benches, etc. For the brave souls who venture out on their own to try a high end DIY sofa pillow, or redo all of your back porch cushions, just know that it will take at least three times longer than you thought it would.
5 Things to Keep In Mind When Creating Your Own Decor
- Gather and assemble all tools and equipment ahead of time.
- Have plenty of work space so that you’re not cramped up and misplacing items
- Make sure your tools and equipment are working properly, bobbins are threaded, fresh needles are available
- PLAN everything out ahead of time–design, measurements, step by step
- If you have time, do a mock up first so as to not waste your final fabric AND to fine tune your design
I love everybody who’ll give it the good old try.
Check out some of our Lazy Days of Summer classes HERE. Hopefully, they’ll meet some of your needs.