The State of Home Made Classes & Our Basic Sock Class

October 31, 2015 Julie Petrella

Basic Sock in Schoppel Wolle Ambiente

When I feel totally overwhelmed with all the child care, household, and shop responsibilities to attend to, I sometimes daydream about the "good old days" when I wasn't chasing around a toddler while trying to do everything else. I think about how I naive I was, not fully appreciating the luxuries I had and chuckle to or about my former self because, ha!, present Julie wouldn't even know what to do with all that free time. Wouldn't even know! :P

Then, it's reality check time and I remember how there were times when I felt totally overwhelmed before I had a kid. Okay, maybe not quite as often. . . 

I recognize that feeling pressed for time is a human struggle, I will always be trying to figure out how to deal with "too little time" for the rest of my life and that I can only do my best. Some days, my best means putting my lovely little man down for his afternoon nap and knitting to quiet my mind, recover some sense of calm, and regain my focus. Lately, my nap time meditation has been knitting the mate to this simple sock.

Most days, I have a very smart and active 18 month old comedian as my sidekick who sets the priorities for me and highlights my many limitations--especially with regard to running a business at the present moment. 

Teaching classes in knitting, sewing and quilting has always been a part of Home Made and still is. But, organizing and teaching classes has also always been a very labor intensive yet hit-or-miss part of this gig. As much as I love to teach, classes require lots of energy all around--energy that's not as plentiful because of a certain aforementioned sidekick. Classes are what new customers are usually most excited to talk about but I find it continually challenging to consistently get customers to actually sign up. To show up. With one exception.

The exception is a small but very loyal number of customers who continue to show up. This is a fluid group so there's no naming names or a set "membership" or anything like that. But, this is the group who is now setting the Home Made class schedule. And keeping me inspired and motivated. These customers share what they'd like to learn and make and then I design a class around their requests. After the dates are set, they register for the class and they show up. That's it.

There's no exclusivity here. To take part in setting the Home Made class schedule, you just need to show up and share! I can't guarantee that I can pull everything off but I will certainly listen and factor in your requests. The funny thing about putting things out into the abyss of the worldwide web is that I don't actually know who is reading this blog. Sure, I can see how many clicks to my website and blog page but, unless there are comments, it's just me writing -- not an actual conversation. Let's have a conversation!

Anyway, my "board of class directors" has been asking about a class that will teach the basics of knitting socks. So, today I share plans for a Basic Sock Class scheduled for this upcoming January. I know, January feels very far away but it's really not. Only two months! 

If you're ready to try sock knitting and see how anyone could ever consider knitting a pair of socks calming or meditative, then our Basic Sock Class is for YOU! Pay no mind to whether or not you were in the scheduling loop for this one or if you're on the "board of class directors." You want to make socks? Just show UP. We'd love to have you. And, how else will you get IN the loop??? (:

You'll find our full class schedule here. To join our Basic Sock Class, you can register for this class online or stop by the shop! And, if you've got any other class requests, let me know!


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  • Becky McDevitt

    Nov 01, 2015

    Julie: I love reading your blog posts! And visiting the shop and coming to your classes is always one of the highlights of my week. I cannot wait to start working on socks!

  • Julie Petrella O'Neill

    Nov 01, 2015

    If I ever make a Home Made commercial, you ladies are hired! Thank you for your kind words and COMMENTS to this post. And, thank you for being my motivation and inspiration — all three of you have been coming to my shop since I opened almost 5 years ago and I’m so grateful you’ve stuck with me. xoxo, Julie
    P.S. Angela, I really hope you’ve been wearing your Blank Canvas sweater ALL weekend to show off your awesome FIRST SWEATER! Please continue wearing this week so we can see it on Tuesday for Sweater Club. (:

  • Tammy

    Nov 01, 2015

    I just wanted to add a comment about sock knitting! Here are three reasons why you should learn to knit socks: 1. Knitting socks is so portable (in the car, at the doctor’s office, or during a lunch break). 2. Your feet will love you! 3. Your recipients will love you more! (My daughter now walks around her college campus with her Birkenstock sandals and her knitted socks….makes her Mama proud!). Seriously, sock knitting is the best. I always have a pair on the needles for those times when I need a few minutes of knitting but can’t devote myself to a more time-intensive project.

  • Angela

    Oct 31, 2015

    Your wonderful, relaxing knitting classes are the best part of my week. I joked that I would be spending every Tuesday evening for the rest of my life knitting at your beautiful shop but I was only half joking. Your classes are great. The people in your classes are so kind and welcoming. And hearing your little man laughing, babbling and running around just add to the warmth that makes Homemade so special. Best news; I did it! My Blank Canvas sweater is finished! Thank you

  • Kathleen Mcpherson

    Oct 31, 2015

    I enjoy reading all of your posts and love seeing the projects that you and fellow knitters/quilters/crafters are working on! It’s inspiring!

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