Thursday, March 28, 2013

Craftsy Classes

Have you checked out yet?

They're a newish website that is all about crafts of every type.  Want a pattern telling you how to make a piece of beaded jewelry?  They've got 'em.    Want to make some adorable soaps disguised as bath toys for your kids?  Join the Bath Crafts for Kids workshops.  Maybe you want to learn how to make your own gorgeous flower accessories out of fabric....they've got that, too.

Seriously, this website has everything.

Over the last few months, I've been participating in some of their on-line knitting classes.  I started with the "Sizing Knitwear Patterns" class.  It really is a good class if you're someone who wants to design your own knits and just doesn't quite understand how to do the math, or if you're a brand new designer who knows how to make things to fit yourself, but doesn't quite understand how to grade the pattern for a range of sizes.  I got through about half the lessons before I was ready to admit I really wasn't going to get anything out of the class, but that's only because I've spent the last 2 years devouring everything I could possibly read about designing and applying it to the patterns I've written.  If I had found this class a couple years ago, I would have saved myself a lot of time & effort!

Next, I zipped right through Debra Robson's "Know Your Wool" class.  Learning a bit about the different types of wool as well as the properties of different fibers was really interesting, and the class was only about 6 short lessons.  I finished it up in one weekend.

I've been slowly but surely making my way through "How to Say It: Pattern Writing for Knitters".  It's another one of those "If only I had done this class 2 years ago!" experiences.  Most of what the instructor is covering are things I've already learned through the last few years of reading, writing, asking lots of questions, and finding out what works well for the knitters who buy my patterns.  Still, I did finally get down to developing a formal style sheet, and I will stick with the class until the end.  Even if I already know most of what's being covered, it never hurts to review some of these points.

I'm also about half-way through Carole Feller's class on Short Rows.  I was already familiar with the "regular" method of wrapping & turning, and her "modified" technique where you unwrap the stitch and hide the wrap behind the stitch when you're working the wraps in.  But she also teaches you the Japanese short row method as well as a yarn-over short row method (I haven't watched the class for the yarn-over method yet!)  It's always nice to have a variety of techniques that serve the same purpose.  Sometimes one method works a lot better in certain situations or with certain stitch patterns.  So I look forward to being able to incorporate these new techniques into my knitting & into my patterns.

In the meantime, I highly recommend you check out the Crafty class catalog.  They even offer a few of their classes as free mini workshops (the short row class & the know your fiber class are both free!) so you can check them out and see what you're in for before you register for any of their paid classes.

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