How do you Rate?

I’ve been thinking about this for the last few weeks. There are some websites to which I subscribe, not all sewing related, that in your profile, ask you to rate your skills. I find this to be an interesting social experiment. Let’s limit the discussion to sewing for right now. How do you rate your skills? I don’t mean, do you think you are beginner/intermediate/advanced. I mean, how do you decide what level you’re at? Me? I would probably say I’m advanced in many areas. But there’s the rub. I’m not advanced in all areas. I can’t draft a basic sloper if my life depended on it. So am I advanced? No, not there. But boy, can I take anyone’s pattern and make a gorgeous garment from it? You bet! Can I drape a beautiful, but simple top and skirt? Absolutely. Can I do a phenomenal job fitting pants to any body? Mmmmm, maybe not.

So I decided, on one of them, to remove my self-rating. Why? I was rating myself alongside folks whose skills I can only dream of. Some people who rated themselves as less skilled than I are (IMHO) better than me at many things. And there were folks who rated themselves as the same skill level as me or higher, but I wouldn’t let my dog sleep on their work. Snarky? Maybe. But it’s true and I ain’t naming any names so don’t take offense; there is none to be had.

Look, we’re all good at certain things. I’m a really good technical teacher. I can get a couch to sew a straight seam and produce a ripple free garment. Given enough time, I can personally produce a couture garment worthy of Paris or Milan. But I can’t do everything, and so I don’t really want to give a blanket statement that says, “I’m xxx level!” Heck, look at medicine – you’ll find specialists, and generalists. They don’t claim to be experts at everything. Why should you?

Happy sewing, however you rate yourself!

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Gorgeous Fabrics

I own an online fabric store, www.GorgeousFabrics.com. The name says it all!

5 thoughts on “How do you Rate?”

  1. Interesting. What is a label, really? You’re so right, we haven’t all arrived in the sewing world. That inspires me to get with the program and work areas of sewing that I’m not so good at. BTW, I can’t draft a sloper, either, and am working on improving my fitting skills.

  2. I feel the same way about my skills as you feel about yours. My skills are excellent *in certain areas* – in other areas, not so good. 🙂

  3. A truer word was never spoken about rating ourselves and our skills. I really liked the reference to the medical profession and how some are specialists and some are generalists. Very few people are good or very good at everything!

  4. It’s such a relief to read this. It’s nice to know that I’m not the only one who conciously decided to not select a skill level for the site you are referring to as well.In some areas I’m an advanced beginner. In others, I’m a rank beginner. In still others, I’m Intermediate. It felt awkward to try and put myself in a category. Like you, I don’t always feel the ratings people give themselves match what I see. On most, I’d bump them up a step. I didn’t like that chronic feeling of dealing with the whole “how do I decide to anounce my skill level”.I’m not there for that. I’m there to learn, make friends, get inspiration and have fun. Thanks for bringing this topic up.

  5. I just removed my rating after seeing the work of those who have indicated their skill levels as advanced.For the longest time I stayed middle of the road, not wanting to indicate my background and training but found that I was pretty much ignored without extra stars and rating. So I changed it and upped my personal PR info. Now, I’m going back to zero as fast as possible and if I could erase stars, too, I surely would! My personal protest!!! Rant over

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