Workshops – please read the joining instructions

Much as I love a workshop, there’s something that irritates me about them.  Its the joining instructions. They’re either rubbish so that you turn up unprepared and don’t get the full benefit, or end up having to buy a load of stuff that you already have at home.

Worse than that though is when the other people don’t bother to read the joining instructions.

I did the most fantastic short workshop at Unravel in February,  Knitting with Beads clearly described as “Suitable for intermediates and experienced knitters” it was only a two hour thing so that’s a sign that there will actually be a pace rather than a cosy day of meandering.

Literally everything was provided, needles, yarn, beads, findings the lot.  We spent a bit of time choosing our colour combinations but we were underway pretty quickly.  First instruction – Cast on 30sts.  This is where I get irritated, there were only about 12 of us on the workshop, yet FOUR people really struggled to cast on 30sts.  One person had to have help making her first loop.  I mean really?  You’ve booked on to a course for intermediate and experienced knitters but you can’t cast on?  That means you have less than basic skills.

It was lace knitting so there was a fair bit of PSSO type action.  Slip stitches and YON nearly caused a melt-down in low-skills corner while the rest of us were all losing out on teaching time we’ve paid for because of them.  Oh and then there was the needy woman that finally admitted ‘a workshop environment doesn’t work for me’ apparently other people’s voices are too distracting.  So why join a workshop?  It was fully booked too so I wonder if there were other people out there who would have got something valuable and enjoyable out of the workshop like I did that lost out.

Really people, no shortcuts.  At least learn the basics before you join an intermediate workshop and if you don’t like workshops perhaps signing up for a workshop isn’t the greatest idea – there’s probably someone out there that would have really enjoyed that class.  I’m off to find lace stitches that I can adapt to incorporate beads.

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