Thursday, April 19, 2007


spider web bag

There are so many things wrong with this bag, but fixing them will have to wait.

I'm off for Asilomar, and CNCH this weekend. This bag is one of my samples for the class, and a cautionary tale is as good, sometimes better, than a perfect project. Plus, this will be a cautionary tale with possible fixes, versus a cautionary tale that will never make it into the finished pile.

And there are those. I bring it all: samples of the good, the bad and the ugly.

I have attended classes where the instructor brought only the best, beautiful, seemingly unattainable finished work. It can be a little daunting. There are also those classes where the instructor brings nothing: no samples, no pictures, no work at all. I try to fall somewhere in between: here's the really fabulous stuff you too can learn to do, and oh, by the way, here's the dross: don't go here.

This bag is not exactly dross, but it' not done, as in I'm not satisfied. It's handspun wool/mohair, and I have just about worn off the pile fondling it while I finished it thus far, so it has some good points! But it needs work. Later.

For now, I'm off to the beach. There might be weather. I am bringing my teapot and knitting (and yes, wishing on a star. Downtime? That would be the 5 a.m knitting). See you next week :).


Blogger Michael said...

“If you can't be a good example, then you'll just have to serve as a horrible warning.” - Catherine Aird

I love that quote, and use it every time I teach a class... I find that showing students where I've gone (often dramatically) wrong, can be the high point in a class. If they can see where the road forks between fabulous and failed, and how to back up and fix it, it saves a lot of heartache!

Will you have a post about what's wrong and what you're fixing? I can't see anything, from here - would be interested in seeing your reworking.

7:33 AM  
Blogger K Spoering said...

I teach that way too - it keeps me humble, if nothing else. Have a great time, and I think the bag looks like one of those projects you'll have all your students imitating in some way. We'll see a version of it at a conference and say, "she must have taken the Sara Lamb workshop"...

7:59 AM  
Blogger Marcy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

8:23 AM  
Blogger Marcy said...

You're just peeved that the blue lips didn't come out as well as you expected.

8:24 AM  
Blogger Charleen said...

I'm with Michael. I'd love to see what you were not happy with and what you did to correct it.

Have a good trip. I hope the weather cooperates with you.

9:02 AM  
Blogger woolydaisy said...

I WANNA GO!(whinning) i love asyilamar-i can be your official tea maker-i'll carry your wool for you-boo hoo. it feels like snow today. have fun!

9:31 AM  
Blogger judy said...

Looks like any disappoinments will be softened by your retreat. They couldn't be that bad. The bad is beautiful, and fun!

12:46 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I would love to join you in person but so much of life including kidding bars that idea.

I do have some days in the future and plan to go to the coast on one of them. Perhaps take some knitting and just sit and knit. Or spin in the sand. Lovely Sara, even in your darkest moments you inspire.

7:19 PM  
Blogger Sharon said...

As always, I appreciate your approachable method of teaching that draws students in. I believe strongly that we are all need to find in us that creative element that will make us complete. For me, it's the fiber and I am always happy to expand on what I've already learned, and I'm always appreciative to those who help me on that journey of self discovery. I only hope I find a way to pay it forward. I believe you have found that in your teachings.

10:27 PM  
Blogger Baycolonyfarm said...

I don't know....I think it looks beautifu.

2:05 PM  
Blogger Katherine said...

I've just started teaching knitting and I'm really trying to emphasize that I'm not perfect, I've made every mistake in the book. I still make mistakes, I still rip.

They seem to think I'm perfect and I think it's really important to let them know I've learned a lot of what I know the hard way and they really can learn to do what I do, that it's not only attainable but often not that difficult.

I'm also trying to get them to let go and experiment--I really enjoyed Abby Franquemont's discussion about that--I just plunge in and try stuff, learn from books, think about what would happen if I did this or that and try it out. I have trouble understanding people who can't do that and it's important to me as a teacher to figure out how to work with people who don't learn the same way I do.

3:07 PM  
Blogger Jackie said...

Good for you! It is a sign of a good teacher to be able to share your imprefections. There have been many times that a student has been bemoaning their mistakes and I have said " Let me tell you a little story. Of my first blanket..." In which I go on to tell them every mistake that I made, and there are plenty, only to come up with a blanket that I will keep for the rest of my life.

5:20 PM  
Blogger Birdsong said...

I agree with the comments fit to print; a good teacher is humble enough to point out that learning doesn't just drop like a mantle out of the sky onto us, but must be worked towards, with mistakes along the way. Though I do love the spider web in that design and am too ignorant to observe any mistakes. I hope you had a lovely time, even with the storm.

6:34 PM  

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