I began teaching in 2010, after repeatedly being asked to make or fix things for people. Referencing the old adage about giving a man a fish vs. teaching him to fish, I decided that teaching people to sew was better than doing it for them. When I would answer "No, I can't mend that for you but I can teach you how" I would often get frightened, defensive responses about "not being creative" or being "afraid of sewing machines", and almost everyone would recount a long story about a traumatic serger accident in middle school.
I decided to design a sewing class in which we would simply make friends with our sewing machines. No expectations, no completed projects. It was a class in which we became familiar with the parts, comfortable with the operations, and clear about how frustrating sewing machines are. Through a self-help/self-awareness lens (and with loads of sexual innuendo for comic relief: if you lick it first it goes in easier) I helped hundreds of people erase the trauma of 7th grade home ec, and feel at ease with the machines that had been sitting in their closets since the 80's.
From there, I began teaching other classes--mostly workshops about how to make simple things, using simple tools and processes, eventually hiring other teachers–mostly professionals from my community–to offer their expertise. I found that every class I taught contained some element of an awareness practice, even though the end goal was always to make an object or learn a skill. The connection between self-awareness and the haptic nature of making took hold and intrigues me to this day.
April - June 2015, BOISE IDAHO
An 8-week course designed to build, flex and tone creative muscles. Featured in Better Homes & Gardens Magazine (August 2015).
SUMMER CAMP SESSIONS
Summer 2015 - BOISE IDAHO
A series of 3-hour workshops to learn a hands-on skill, and walk away with an awesome object.
MAKE + LEARN
2011-2014 - BOISE IDAHO
An ongoing series of classes designed for various age and interest groups. Taught by local professionals, and offered at affordable prices, and usually included snacks.