(Aug 31, 2012) Edited to add:
This FAQ list is updated to reflect the latest practices at The Handiworks.
Why do we write such lengthy notes?
We believe in being upfront so that customers know what to expect when they join us -- expectations management is important to us.
Please expect to receive a standard reply when you send in your query, coupled with some FAQs on what you expected to see in our course previews as well as a link to sign up for the session.
We receive several enquiries daily but we are usually busy with lessons (including weekends) and are not by the PC 24/7 so if you are interested to find out more, our previews are the platform for you to interact with us. [Please click on the preview tab on the top to get preview session details.]
1. What are 1-1 sessions about?
1-1 lessons mean I teach you as an individual on a one-to-one basis. The advantage is you sit right next to me and get a close up view of the techniques and how I handle the yarn, needles and stitches. Then you get to do it yourself.
2. What do you teach?
In broad terms, I teach knitting and crochet. Specifically, I teach basic techniques of casting on, knit/purl or crochet. More importantly, I also go into custom fitting - you'll learn how to read schematics and how to adapt/modify to suit your own body or your intended recipients better.
3. I am a beginner. What projects can I start with?
Anything you want -- it's your own comfort zone, really.
Some students prefer to start with scarves, bags or phone pouches.
Garments such as full sized sweaters, cardigans or tank tops are also first projects for my students -- you can see them here, here & here. [The WORD CLOUD on the right also show the various finished projects. Look under "FO" for finished items.]
Others have started with stuffed toys as gifts for their kids or simply because they like teddy bears themselves -- here's an adorable Hello Kitty doll. [Please do note that with toys, you will need to already possess basic knitting or crochet skills with increase and decrease capabilities. This is not an option for first-time beginners.]
Similar project ideas apply.
However, do bear in mind that crochet beginners will be strongly suggested to start with a knitting project to train finger dexterity.
Actual first crochet projects will require slightly thicker yarns. If garments are preferred, please do note that no shaping will be incorporated for first projects and no thin yarns will be used.
We'll help you assess the level of complexity if you already have a pattern in mind.
A suggestion would be to start on a project that you'll have use for or that you'll like so that the progress is enjoyable.
4. What are the fees? How many lessons does one need? The number of lessons needed varies depending on the project selection, complexity as well as your absorption levels. [Attending any of our complimentary previews is your only opportunity to come and clarify any questions you may have prior to sign up.]
5. Can we choose just to attend group lessons only?
As mentioned in point #2, 1-1 lessons allow me as an instructor to pay more attention and help you to make garments that will fit you better; especially for beginners. Our group lessons are by invitation on ad-hoc basis should the need arises.
As such, our lessons are on individual 1-1 private basis. We do not accept 1:2 or 1:3 customer ratios.
6. How long usually is the first session?
Most customers require between 2.5 ~ 3.5hours for their first lessons.
So far, the experience has been this:
- You'll be taught to cast on/knit/purl while learning proper tensioning technique.
- Learn about the use of the various tools and yarn.
- Understand basic garment / bag /accessory construction (depending on your project selection).
- Do swatching practice.
- Prepare to start for project piece of your choice.
In short, we believe in getting you all ready to begin on your project by the time you finish your first lesson.
7. What do I need to bring along for my first session?
A fresh mind.
A "I-can-do-it" attitude.
Please do not arrange your first lesson at the end of a work-day as your brain may be too tired to absorb any new concepts or techniques. This becomes counter-productive.
If you have some patterns that you like, please bring them along during the preview as well.
8. Can I bring my own yarns and needles for the lessons?
If you own some knitting needles, you are welcome to bring them along but you are required to purchase project yarn materials from us.
9. Will I be able to start my garment in the first session?
For those wanting to work on a custom-fit garment, my recommendation is that you have book a 4 hr session for your first lesson if you wish to cast on and start your garment during your first visit.
[We're referring to custom-fitting adult size garments here.]
10. Do you charge extra for custom-fitting?
As long as you purchase yarn materials from us* and attend sessions, the custom-fitting service is our value-added service which we do not charge extra for (based on already available patterns).
11. I have some uncompleted projects and need help finishing them. Can you do something about it?
[Sorry but we have ceased this service.]
However, please note that depending on the extent of materials or pattern information available, there may be some extra charges to cover time spent on pattern deciphering and so on.
12. I am an intermediate student and I just need some lessons on better finishing.
The 1-1 lessons provide flexibility for you to decide what you want to learn.
13. I'm ready to start my sessions. What do I do?
Please go to the lesson preview tab and register for any of the sessions accordingly.
Once I receive your info, I will get in touch with you to confirm your preview attendance.
14. I just want to come preview and buy some yarn! No lessons needed.
No problem! You are more than welcome to join in during our previews.
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