Recognising that our society isn’t as great at passing skills down the generations as it used to be, The Amazings was founded to harness the skills, knowledge and of the over-fifties to share with us all. I think this is a fantastic idea – valuing the skills that people have built up over a lifetime of practical experience. Up until recently this has happened through real-life classes in London, but now they are widening their reach with online classes.
I’ve been enjoying watching the Learn to Patchwork Quilt and Upcycle a Shirt classes this week (access provided for free in return for writing this blog post). The classes are entertaining, taking the form of a filmed conversation between the tutor and student (not quite the right word, but can’t think of a better one). They are very informal, and packed with lots of personal stories, chat and fun, as well as lots of really great ideas and explanations of skills and techniques.
If you are an impatient sort of person, who just wants to learn a skill, you might find the classes a bit too discursive, but they’re certainly not dull! Personally I think they could have benefited from more close ups of stitching and more attention to small details, especially if they want to compete with some of the other online class providers like Craftsy.
That quibble aside, the classes are great value, starting at just £12 a time – for that price you get around 2 hours of video tutorials, commentary, teacher’s notes, and contact with the teacher. And once you have enrolled, you can watch and re-watch classes anywhere, anytime, for as long as you like. I can imagine that, for a beginner, the classes I watched would make a very friendly and not-too-overwhelming introduction to new skills. I am very seriously thinking of signing up for the Retro Hairdo classes (and not just because of the rather charming instructor, Michael) – I just have to wait for my hair to grow another couple of inches and I am sure I will be creating the most fabulous of chignons…
Now, in spite of the fact that my friend’s five year old quite often calls me Granny, I have not quite reached my fiftieth year, which, for once, I am quite sad about because I would love to be an Amazings instructor. It looks like a lot of fun, and up to 20% of enrollment fees go to Amazing Elders (great title!)… so if you are the right age, and have something to share (I bet you do!), you might want to apply.
It’s worth checking back regularly, or signing up to the newsletter, because there’s going to be a new online class added weekly – and if you sign up using this link, you should get your first class for free.
Thanks to the folks at The Amazings for giving me the opportunity to check out their classes.