I was really looking forward to these classes. I’ve taken classes at NASHUA (loved them) and the Mancuso show (loved them), so was excited to see what AQS had to offer. This was my first opportunity to use classroom machines and I was excited to have that experience as well. I took three, 3 hour classes. Since I have no finished materials … I comment on them all together.
First of all, I LOVED having the classroom machines. The educators were fabulous. I wasn’t sure how the process worked, but they have the machines all pre-threaded, with bobbins loaded, and the appropriate feet attached. If you need a different foot, they attach it for you. (It was kind of like sewing with mom, when I was a kid!) At the beginning of the class, they give you a short intro to the machine. I got to sew on the Janome 6600 (the machine I had purchased) which was fabulous. The other machine we used was terrible … it would even sew a seam without using a starter piece of fabric. This is a great way to see if you like a machine, although the sewing we did was straight stitch only. (My third class was hand-sewing only, so I only got to try two machines.)
The classroom setup was disappointing. We were jammed in there like sardines. This would be fine if we were listening to a lecture on tax law, but the projects required that we get up and use the ironing board. In one of my classes, it was impossible for most of us to get in and out, and the educator was doing our pressing. This also meant that the teacher could not help us. It was very disappointing.
My classes were 3 hours. (I had scheduled one for all day, but I was sick and missed it — more about that later.) There was just not much you could do in 3 hours. I didn’t feel like I learned a lot. I felt things were very simple. In hindsight, that’s probably all I could expect with 3 hours and 20 people, but I saw these gorgeous pictures in the brochure and expected to do more than 5% of it during class).
As an art quilter, the classes I attended were much more for traditional quilters. Actually, I felt that the whole show was. I think it really hit me in class, however. It was just very robotic because there were so many people and so little time, that there wasn’t much room for creativity.
That said, the teachers were friendly, knowledgeable, definitely knew their stuff. My big complaint was being stuffed into those little rooms without space to move.