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  • Help with lots of advice ????

    Hi All
    I know I have posted before about this but would really appreciate some sound advice about the NDA course for Soft Furnishings

    I have been deliberating for some time now about doing it. As with all of us I work, (shifts), I run a small soft furnishings business from home albeit for friends and family so small fry and for the past 18 months my husband has been critically ill and still not out of the woods.

    So hope you can understand my dilemma. I really feel I need something new to focus on and think that getting some kind of qualification in my love for making things might give me some direction and help me to start my own business and move on in my life

    ''Yes'' I am having a mid life crisis but hey I am trying to do some thing about it.

    I know you guys are always very supportive so would really relish some advice on past experience, good and bad.

    I have today been speaking to one of the reception people at the Academy , mostly to find out that the fees are not changing yet, so I canstill benefit from the good fees.

    The lady I spoke to really did not give me much inspiration really, I needed to get a feel for what the courses are like, how people manage to do this and keep down a job, life/work balance etc.

    Anyway , I would really appreciate some advice. My main concerns I suppose are getting things done in time and not worrying about whether I can do the stuff, which I am sure if I put my mind to I will be able to but just need the confidence.

    Rant over, thanks for reading and listening to a desperate woman !!!

    Baz

  • #2
    Re: Help with lots of advice ????

    Hi Baz

    It was Mydecozo that got me into the NDA course - which I started at the beginning of March. I have a small curtain making business which I do part time (but plan to do full time - fingers crossed) and I work at the local University during term time - so I get quite a lot of time off from there which I use to make extra curtains. Needless to say I'm never without work.

    I thought the NDA course would be a doddle and that I'd fly through it in a matter or months as I've made curtains etc for so long - NOT A CHANCE! The first Assignment - which is all about understanding fabric and colour (and is something I've not really got involved with until I started the course) took me ages to finish and I had to ask for an extension - much to my horror! The subsequent Assignments are I think going to be easier for me as they get into the nitty gritty of curtain making etc. However my next one is due on Monday and I've only just started it - I just can't ask for another extension - can I?

    I must admit I don't get involved with the website, other than to check my correspondence and the Assignments - I don't seem to find the time to do that but I can imagine you could get much more involved if you decided to and I think you could probably get lots of support. I get any support I need from friends or this website!

    Do I really need to do the course for my job? Not really. Am I glad I'm doing the course? Absolutely! Yes, it takes up (precious) time but it's your precious time and if you love making curtains like I think most of us on Mydecozo do then it's fab. Go for it and good luck! If you want to PM me for more info feel free.

    (PS - I got excellent feedback for my first Assignment when I finally handed it in - and I'm so proud of myself).
    Jacqui
    Quarndon Curtain Design

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    • #3
      Re: Help with lots of advice ????

      Hi Baz, I don't know if its a mid life crisis but you've certainly being living through a crisis with your husband being so ill. I really hope he gets better. Just be careful you don't take on too much even though it's good to have something else to focus on when times are tough.
      Take care and look after yourself
      JulieB

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      • #4
        Re: Help with lots of advice ????

        Hello Baz,

        I have just completed this course and have found it to be excellent. I had never sewn before and my partner thought I was crazy doing this course! But I have to say I enjoyed it so much and gave me something to focus on after an upheaval of a major change in career direction. I would say go for it. Yes, it will keep you very busy and as with most peoples lives, there will always be outside pressures. I just disciplined myself to make sure I set the time aside to get the course work done and once I started on the first assignment it just started to flow and it was a pleasure to do. Also the course tutor I had was very supportive and she is very patient. I didn't even know what slip stitch was!! Just waiting for my certificate now. Hope this helps.

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        • #5
          Re: Help with lots of advice ????

          I have been through something similar when my mother was ill for many years & I was her carer. Its frustrating when you are in the midst of situations beyond your control & you want to take charge of your own direction. I havent done the NDA course but trained elsewhere, maybe consider the length of the course & flexibility you may have to finish it within the time frame they state. Be kind to yourself whilst trying not to lose sight of your goal!! Good luck & I wish your husband well. Let us know what you decide.
          KarenS

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          • #6
            Re: Help with lots of advice ????

            Hello baz, I haven't been on the forum for ages, hence just noticed your question re NDA, I did the course while I was working full time. I was surprised at the amount of time I needed to give to the course but it was well worth it, the tutors are always at the end of a phone to give personal advice too. If you can manage to find the time and not get yourself too worked up about getting things in by the times you will benefit from the course . I found that the more worked up I got myself ( its my nature) the longer it took. But you can as mentioned by someone else, you can get extentions if needed. The course gives good knowledge but as with any new job you do most of your learning when you take on projects for clients.
            The benefit of the distance learning is that you have time to work things out and you have this forum to get 'practical' advice from the people who have been practicing their skills for longer than us !! that is where you can build confidence.
            Best Wishes
            Fiona

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            • #7
              Re: Help with lots of advice ????

              Hi Baz
              I too did the NDA course last year and would definitely recommend it. I had been a hobby sewer for many years and after leaving a very full-on corporate job, decided to take time out and re-train for something new. I too struggled with the first assignment - being a distance learning scenario meant I didn't really have a feel for what was wanted. Frankly, I think it helps to have a sewing background already...i.e. knowing your way round a sewing machine and already having knowledge of some of the terms. I did feel that the training materials assumed a certain amount of knowledge as not all terms are explained. One of the drawbacks of distance learning, I suppose. Having said that the tutors are very helpful and you can ask whatever you like - you can guarantee they have probably been asked it before! All the other assignments are practical where you have to actually make something. I found those much quicker and easier to do.

              One thing I would recommend is to invest in course CD which comes as an optional extra. It's a bit like a Decozo video where someone demonstrates and talks through all the skills you are learning. Personally, I learn much better by watching someone do something and I felt it helped put the written materials into context. And of course with a CD you can replay it as many times as you like!

              You are an established sewer already so you will be fine - go for it and do something 'for you'!
              Good luck
              Carol

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              • #8
                Re: Help with lots of advice ????

                For those of you who've done the course, what sort of time commitment do you think it took?

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