How is new education created? If you were starting from scratch, where would you begin? This is an important question, because as we've discussed in previous posts, our old models for upholstery education are increasingly impractical. How do you pull a new model out of your hat? This was the question I put to an … Continue reading Upholstery education, back to front
Last week, I was listening to an episode of The Sew Much More Podcast. It was a roundtable discussion with a handful of self-employed mothers, looking at the challenges of balancing career and family. It got me thinking about my own mom. She is such an important part of who I am, and who I … Continue reading Things my mother taught me
Last week, I mentioned my friend Maria. We initially met at the YMCA, so it's no surprise that our coffeeshop conversations often circle back to fitness metaphors. (I asked Maria if I could share photos from her stunning instagram account - truly, my blog has never been lovelier. I hope they enhance your reading experience. … Continue reading The Yoga Model for Upholstery Education.
"If we do not allow ourselves - force ourselves, sometimes - to think creatively to behave creatively, to take creative risks, how are we to discover our own potential? . . . Try something new. Experiment. Don't back down. Value your work and your time. When you're done, learn to love it, even if you … Continue reading Upholsterers in the yarn store??
Okay friends, let's put all our cards on the table. Because I really want to talk about what's happening with upholstery education in the U.S. Or rather, what's NOT happening. Whenever discussions ramp up around professional training, they inevitably circle back to trade schools and degree programs. It's a logical starting point, the way we … Continue reading Where did upholstery degrees go?
About 5 years ago, I started teaching upholstery in NE Minneapolis. We were pretty successful with the hobbyists, but people kept asking, "Now how do you do this as a career?" I surely didn't know. I'm the daughter of an upholsterer, and still it's been a long, messy road. But it seemed like a question … Continue reading The Upholsterer of the Future
A couple years ago, I traveled to Denver for a Craftsy Instructor Summit. I met AAAAAAAAAAAmazing people, plenty of them. But one in particular stands out in my mind. . . Her name is Beverly Johnson. Otherwise known as, "The Fairy Bra Mother." Based in Ontario, Canada, Beverly has created a complete resource for the … Continue reading Riches in the Niches
There's a funny notion that bubbles up in upholstery circles: The idea that education undermines professionals. It seems to boil down to two general arguments: giving away trade secrets, and training your competition. Let's have a look . . . You're giving away trade secrets. Maybe I'm uncommonly thick . . . But I don't … Continue reading Does Upholstery Education Undermine Professionals?
Spring is a crazy time for upholstery shops, and we've been feeling it in St. Paul. . . But somewhere between emails and messages and phone calls, I've felt lucky to claim a few quiet stretches in the shop, just me and a project. Those are such lovely days. This is the part of the … Continue reading The skilled human element
I once reupholstered a wing chair for a woman in her seventies - she was referred to me by an older male colleague who had decided to change careers. We went through the estimate, details, timelines, fabric, etc. Then she paused and said. . . . "You know, I just think it's so interesting! I've … Continue reading Why are more women doing upholstery?