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Things That Make Me Giggle With Girlish Glee

So I says to my class, after lecture, “Let’s play a game!” There was almost a response…. “I need six classic movies.” It took a little second, but we got there. “Ok, now I need six kinds of monster!” Oh, wow, turns out my class is way more excited about monsters than movies. *laugh* So, two lists and two random numbers later, I handed out stacks of small croquis and happily announced, “Your design inspiration is It’s a Wonderful Life with Vampires! As many designs as you can in ten minutes – if you get stuck on one, put it to the side and move on. Go!”
So, what would you do with that one? ;)
On a side note, I spent 15 hous last weekend preparing lecture material for ONE day of class. Admittedly, I’m a hyper-over-achiever. But here’s the thing: it took all of 40 minutes in class to present all that. Maybe I talk to fast. Maybe no one is comfortable contributing because they’re not yet comfortable with my crazy.
But maybe this is also why teachers are so unsympathetic when students complain about homework… Le sigh. I have become the evils.


  1. Beth
    Beth January 24, 2012

    Hyper-over-achiever … hmmm … you???? I’d never have guessed from reading your work over the last 10(?) years. BIG GRIN.

    Seriously, do try to avoid over-thinking lectures. When I taught business statistics, they told me not to spend more than 3 or 4 hours outside class for every 50 minute class period. I understand that creative topic may take more time but try to protect some time for yourself.

    Sometimes a moment of silence and another request will prompt class participation.

    • missa
      missa January 24, 2012

      Hi, Beth,

      Ten years? *laugh* In Internet years, we’re both dogs!

      :) thanks so much for the encouragement – I think the problem is that I have the whole entire interwebs to pull just the right “what does this design picture mean” photos from, and I feel a horrible obligation to try to track down source attributions whenever possible. Thank you for the guideline on time – I’m never sure if I’m doing enough!

  2. Laura MNSOC President
    Laura MNSOC President January 25, 2012

    Hee. I am teaching a bunch of classes this spring and the prep work takes SO LONG. I admire your clever trick there for your class.

    How is it going? I am building my frame for my Eleonora dress and finally getting back into the game. This Guild President business can be fun, but it sure sucks up time…

  3. Debbie
    Debbie January 29, 2012

    I love your posts! I was a teacher for a while. Never make them raise their hands. As soon as they get used to “calling out” and they learn you are serious about actually teaching them, they will warm up and contribute. Good luck! The world needs more good teachers :)

    • missa
      missa February 6, 2012

      Thank you, Debbie!

      It’s getting better – I’m getting more comfortable with my process, and I think they’re starting to understand that I really want them to have the joy for design, and it’s safe to be creative and challenge yourself even if it doesn’t always go according to plan. It’s hard, I think, since school mostly emphasizes success rather than self-challenge. (And, seriously, why challenge yourself if you’re going to be marked down? It’s hard enough to give yourself permission to fail privately, but to do it in a situation where you know you’re going to be judged? Ugh.)

      It’s so important to learn that design isn’t just what you know you can sew – it’s is a constantly evolving thing, and if stuff doesn’t work you keep trying rather than giving up and saying “Oh, well, didn’t work according to plan. I accept the suckage and I’m not going to let it evolve into something else.”

      But I’m getting some amazing Oh! moments out of them. Today’s design mixup was superheroes done by designers – they picked 6 superheroes and six designers, I rolled (virtual) dice. We started out with Superman done by Michael Kors, but that’s really more of a joke than a design challenge and one of them called a mulligan on it. More dice, we got Spiderman by Marc Jacobs. I told them to either try to turn superhero into fashion, or to embrace the costume-y-ness and get it all out of their systems, and wouldn’t you know that the one who always draws little manga costumes churned out a completely fashion-forward collection? Really?! Where has all this been? OMG. No kidding – that one is finding her voice and will be a force if she keeps trusting her instinct.

      I love being there when that happens. :) I’m so proud of them – it’s like every time someone mails me pics of stuff them made from directions on the site, but I actually get to see the faces in that moment. I just … I could cry. I am so lucky.

  4. Jennifer
    Jennifer February 3, 2012

    Hi! I just wanted to let you know that I’ve been reading your blog for…eesh, probably a year and a half now, and it’s so helpful, and so inspiring! I actually got up the nerve to approach one of the costume designers who works in community theater here (thankfully she was an acquaintance, anyway) and I’m actually officially on the costume crew for one of the groups now! It’s a lot of work, but so much fun. I wouldn’t have even realized it was an option, before reading your blog, so I wanted to say thanks!

    • missa
      missa February 6, 2012

      Hi, Jennifer,

      Yay! Good for you! I’m so glad you’re taking steps to pursue your dreams. Your average costumer is overworked, so we’re usually really receptive to anyone who will trade working hands for learning.

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