When I was in middle school, I made about a hundred geocities and angelfire websites. I adorned them with sparkly animated gifs and text marquees inside of tables. I couldn't tell you what the topics were, but I obviously did not grow up to be Tavi Gevinson.
This summer, I've decided to learn to code properly through Team Treehouse. I wish this website had existed years ago, because I struggled with ActionScript 3 in college and gave up on the idea of ever learning how to develop. I've almost completed the CSS section of the course and am really excited to start taking my knowledge and applying it to this very website and projects at work.
In addition to coding in this summer of skills, I've been teaching myself how to weave. It's a popular pastime here in Portland. So popular that Obama may no longer be our president when my name gets called to take formal lessons at Ruthie's Weaving Studio. In the meantime, I've purchased a lap loom and have been weaving and unweaving tapestries which now line my utensil drawers.
The Makery also hosts Carol Ross and Roger Besselievre. They quit their jobs back in 1987 to follow and teach their love of basket weaving. They teach two classes in beginning and intermediate basket weaving (round and Japanese) at the Makery a month. Last Saturday, I spent my day under their tutelage (and received some help from Lisa Jones).
The beauty of the class is that everyone is encouraged to design their own basket. Carol hand-dyes the reeds in a large selection of vibrant colors so no two were alike.
Into our second hour, I had yet to finish the base when my fingers started to throb.
"There is no way to make a basket by machine. They are all hand woven," Carol told us. "When you see a $10 basket at Walmart…"
The hard part is constructing the base. A harder part is learning that it is rather impossible to fix your mistakes. It's not too hard to learn to love your mistakes though.