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Revit Classes by Ideate Inc.

Palace of Assembly Chandigarh 2006.jpg

Ideate delivers best-in-class training for new professionals in the Architectural, Engineering and Construction industries. Revit Fundamentals continues to be a highly requested class and Ideate offers a variety of different training options, including in-person and online, for those looking to enter the Building Information Modeling (BIM) world or upgrade their skills.

Revit Architecture works the way architects and designers think and work. Purpose-built for the Building Information Modeling (BIM) process, Revit Architecture helps you accurately capture your early design concepts and maintain and share your vision through design, documentation, revisions, and construction.

Architects and designers love the realistic experience they can provide for their clients using Revit’s rendering and 3D views capabilities. But Revit is more than that – it is a collaboration platform that allows architects and designers to seamlessly interact with clients and engineering and construction partners. Revit user Benjamin W. says, ‘Coming from AutoCAD, Revit makes projects a seamless transition from preliminary design options to complete construction documents and administration. The ability to draw in 3D allows for coordination between disciplines to occur much easier to overcome design problems while keeping the project moving forward’.

(Autodesk Revit 2017. Image: Autodesk)
(Autodesk Revit 2017. Image: Autodesk)

Featuring instructor-led classes in downtown Seattle as well as online, Ideate’s courses go beyond basic picks and clicks, offering interactive curriculum with a mix of lecture and hands-on exercises. Courses highlight sample architecture and design projects emphasizing real-world, practical applications. Learning Revit is not just about learning a piece of software, it is also about learning the business and collaboration processes that make BIM and Revit so successful. It increases design review and efficiency across an entire project, from concept to completion, and saves everyone involved time and money.

Sash Kazeminejad, a Senior Application Specialist with Ideate notes “When we teach, we make sure to always give you the theory or approach behind why you are pushing certain buttons, and that’s a benefit from the face time with your trainer. Once you have the theory, you’ll be better able to remember the process. Best of all, you can get all your questions and concerns right out on the table. Being able to relate to a live instructor is a big motivator to be a good student. Regardless of your skill set, you’ll always come away with something new.”

If you have the inclination to build great things, learning how to use Revit could be an excellent first step. Book early – these popular classes fill up fast!

Revit Architecture Fundamentals

Revit Architecture Fundamentals Online Class


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Lifelong Learning For The New Economy

Lifelong Learning

With the rapid pace of technological and societal change, it is no longer sufficient to rely purely on formal education and college degrees when seeking employment. We all need to be learning all the time as we adapt to changing conditions in the job, career, and business markets. The Economist just published an article on this topic.

Technological change demands stronger and more continuous connections between education and employment. – The Economist

Many people are concerned about the advancement of robotics and automation that appears to be replacing jobs, especially in the manufacturing space. But the industrial revolution has now been replaced by the information revolution and the knowledge economy. As such, jobs of the future will change and many new opportunities will arise. Jobs will be less repetitive, centered around technology innovation, more creative, and more challenging and rewarding.

So how do you prepare for this sea-change? The answer is lifelong learning, which continues over the course of a person’s entire career. Keeping up with professional and technology trends will help light the way towards the learning that is most important in the new economy.

A college degree at the start of a working career does not answer the need for the continuous acquisition of new skills, especially as career spans are lengthening. Vocational training is good at giving people job-specific skills, but those, too, will need to be updated over and over again during a career lasting decades. – The Economist

Many successful people understand how important it is to be continuously learning. The younger you are, the more obvious it is. Those who rely heavily on the Internet are learning all the time. A key skill they develop is learning to learn, but there is still a place for classes, workshops, and bootcamps that will boost your learning to new heights. Unfortunately, companies now spend less money on training and professional development, so it is important for employees to have their own continuous learning strategies.

According to the Pew survey, 54% of all working Americans think it will be essential to develop new skills throughout their working lives; among adults under 30 the number goes up to 61%. Another survey, conducted by Manpower in 2016, found that 93% of millennials were willing to spend their own money on further training. – The Economist

We are so passionate about helping our learners succeed and offer thousands of classes. both in-person and online. It doesn’t take much time or money to boost your skills to make you more competitive. You just need to have a strategy for ensuring that your knowledge and skills are always up-to-date. Even if you aren’t in a technical job, technical skills like software and social media help everyone. Creative skills like graphic design and photography are also useful in a variety of jobs. Skills like project management, team leadership, and conflict resolution are critical to anyone’s success.

Vocational training is one way to get yourself into the job market quickly. 4-year degrees and even certificate programs take a lot more time than is needed to learn the skills necessary for particular jobs, like culinary professionals, creatives, and software development or data science. Even then, a commitment to continue learning is how you will rise to the top. What is really important is what you know how to do and how you can express those abilities through a portfolio of work.

Vocational training has a role, but training someone early to do one thing all their lives is not the answer to lifelong learning. – The Economist

It’s time to re-think our approaches to career training and professional development. College is very, very expensive, but it is possible to learn critical skills and build a portfolio of work in a short time taking individual classes targeted at your career goals. Maybe you want to start your own business, in fact, which is another trend that is really taking off.

So, are you ready for the future? At Connect2Classes, we offer a wide array of online and in-person classes to prepare you for all of the most exciting jobs of the future.

Check out thousands of upcoming classes on Connect2Classes.

Enter your interests and receive $10 off your first class!

Gift certificates are available!

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Learning Experiences Are the Very Best Gifts!

Holiday classes

We used to think that human brains are vessels to be filled with things they need to know. But we all know that lecture-based teaching often puts learners to sleep! Thankfully, there has been a renaissance in learning in recent years. For example, project-based learning is now of major interest for both kid and adult learning. Learning, it turns out, is an individual effort that relies on a person’s passion to learn new things. Experiential learning is the process of learning through experience.

Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn. – Benjamin Franklin

We must be involved and engaged to truly learn, and if you want to learn new things, or want to help a loved one learn, knowing how we learn best will help. It can also help people discover how much they love to learn and create, which as we know, makes us all happier!

What fuels our passion?
Learning happens naturally when the subject matter is something we’re intrigued by. Know someone who loves home improvement shows? Gift them a woodworking or remodeling class!

How do we learn best?
Some of us thrive while reading or writing, but many of us are visual or kinesthetic (learning by doing) learners. Young learners, in particular, can struggle in school where they need to sit still, so show them how much they love to learn with a class or workshop tailored to their interests.

How do we learn tangible skills like cooking, arts, crafts, or DIY?
There has long been a tradition of teaming masters like chefs and artists with apprentices to learn their craft. Many of us need to watch skilled practitioners and learn skills and tips step-by-step.

How do we remember what we learn?
While we might immediately forget a chapter we read in a how-to book or even the content of a video, hands-on learning experiences allow us to learn while getting feedback from experts.

What can we learn that will make a difference to our lives?
Improving career and business skills, as well as life skills like relationships, benefits us enormously. It’s so important to stay current, even if it involves learning about something we’ve never heard of!

We’d love for you to give the gift of experience this holiday season! Gift certificates are available! Great gifts for far-flung loved ones, or even for a class you can take together! One of our grandmothers decided on sushi-making classes for her 12-year old grandson – what can you choose to wow those you love?

Want to learn how to do something life-changing?

Check out thousands of upcoming classes on Connect2Classes.

Enter your interests and receive $10 off your first class!

Gift certificates are available!


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Career Roadmap – Interested in the Video Game Industry?

illustration-1736462_960_720We talk a lot at Connect2Classes about how so many things are changing when it comes to preparing for a career. With so many classes, workshops and online classes available, people now have more options than ever when it comes to developing their careers. For one thing, traditional college, or at least 4-year degrees, are becoming less important in some industries. What really matters is what you can do, which can be demonstrated via a portfolio of work. If you’re a developer, it’s working apps or games, or even code samples. If you’re a designer or artist, having a strong portfolio of game art is the way to get you noticed. There are other options, as well, like project management, writing, and customer service. You can even start your own business or game studio, or work as a free agent.

If you’re into games to any degree, then a career in the games industry might be for you. In this article we will look at the roles available in the game industry, as well as some of the skills you might consider developing if one of these career paths is of interest to you. If you’d like to know how much you could expect to make in any of these careers, check out the Game Developer Salary Survey 2013.

One thing to know is that people in the game industry tend to work very hard. and hours can be long, especially during ‘crunch’ time (when a title is about to launch). Still, game companies can be very fun places to work, especially if you enjoy spending time around other gamers in a highly creative setting.

Game Production

Executive Producers might be responsible for a portfolio of games, and create budgets and launch strategies. An MBA or degree in business administration or management is helpful, and a wide array of experience in the games industry is mandatory.
Producers are typically limited to one game and are responsible for project management, scheduling and budget. They guide the overall course of game development and make sure all the pieces come together adequately. Courses or certificates in project management or game production are nice to have, but not always required.

Game Research

Market Research is where it all begins, by looking at the overall landscape, understanding competitors, and defining audiences for a game. It might also include making recommendations about launch strategy and may even affect the concept and design of a game. Market researchers typically have degrees in business, statistics or social science.
Player Research is related to the experience of game play and might involve game usability testing or play-testing. Most player researchers have advanced degrees in psychology or the social sciences and may be experts in human factors research.
Data Science is an emerging area related to data collected on players and game play. Data scientists analyze collected data and make predictions about future player behavior or help development teams with predictive models to accelerate game play. Most data scientists have backgrounds in computer science and are skilled with databases, algorithms and machine learning.

Game Design

hare-643353_960_720Game Designers are central to any game project and responsible for designing the overall story and game play elements. They maintain game design documentation and ensure that other elements (art, sound, writing, etc.) are cohesive. There are many professional programs available that focus on this area.
Mechanics or System Designers are focused on specific game mechanics, which can vary according to the genre of the game.
Level designers are responsible for designing specific tasks, missions or quests, and design both obstacle and reward systems to accompany them.

Game Art

Concept Artists are responsible for conceptualizing the game’s story, settings and characters. A background in fine art is typical, but there are also programs available that focus on video game art.
Character Design and Modeling (or Animation) is the field focused on developing characters and character detail and illustrating them in 2D or modeling them for 3D.
Level Designers on art teams are responsible for implementing the overall look and feel of a game into individual levels.
UI Design is responsible for the overall user interface including the HUD (heads-up display) and other status mechanisms.

Game Music and Sound Effects

Audio Producers and Managers are responsible for all audio content in a game, and may manage various people. A background in sound recording is useful, or a certificate in sound design for games.
Composers write original music for games, much like film or tv composers write scores.
Sound Designers are focused on all of the ambient sound in a game, and work to uphold the game’s vision through sound.

Game Storytelling and Writing

Narrative Designers are responsible for the overall story and for ensuring that the narrative plays out through all the various elements of the game. Any sort of creative writing background is useful here, and experience with games, in particular, is mandatory. Education in game design theory and game mechanics is also helpful.
Writers are typically given projects to work on, like writing content for quests, or character dialogue.

minecraft-1017449_640Game and Systems Development

Game/Systems Architects are responsible for overall technical design of a world and may recommend or develop a game engine, as well. A background in computer science is typical for this role, and specific education in game development is also useful.
Game Developers and Programmers are typically assigned to some aspect(s) of the game and may work on one or several components for a length of time.

Game Testing

Quality Assurance positions are not terribly well paid, but they are frequently entry level. You’ll be playing games to find glitches or bugs, or even issues with usability.

Game Talent

Character Models are used as a basis for concept art or 3D models. A standard modeling portfolio is just about all you will need, though games-specific experience is also appreciated.
Voiceover Actors supply the voices for characters. Any voiceover experience could be relevant, but you will need a demo reel and will have to audition.
Motion Capture Actors are agile and disciplined people who take direction readily.

mario-1557974_960_720Marketing and Advertising

Marketing roles in game companies can cover a lot of territory, from strategic planning to communications, event/trade show planning, marketing and advertising campaigns, and social media. If you have experience in other digital-related fields it’s possible to parlay that experience for the games industry, especially if you’re an avid gamer yourself.

Customer Support

Customer Support roles are some of the most important, and some of them are entry level positions.

Community Managers monitor and moderate social media, forum posts, knowledge bases and other locations where game information is shared. They help resolve disputes and often provide input on the player point-of-view to development teams.

Educate Yourself

It’s never been easier to educate yourself for a career in the games industry. Playing a lot of games is helpful, of course, but there are also many classes and workshops that will help you learn specifics. If you’re really serious, consider a degree or certificate from a school that specializes in game design and development.


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Preparing For The Jobs of the Future

With technology advancing so rapidly, we know that the next 10-20 years will be full of changes to how people work. This means changes, as well, in how people educate themselves and how they find work. For one thing, the rapid advancement in technology will reach exponential proportions and along with it, the changes needed in the workforce.

Increasing automation is also looming on the horizon, but what it means is that some types of jobs will wane. Over the long term, technological innovation creates more new jobs than are lost through obsolescence. And some industries will continue to thrive, including healthcare and retail.

Earlier this year, the World Economic Forum reported that humanity would be out 7 million jobs by 2020 due to automation—with admin and office jobs taking the brunt of the blow. –

We are also coming upon a new era of human potential, with robotics, human augmentation, space travel, virtual reality, holography, self-driving cars, and sustainability/permaculture innovations creating entirely new industries. It’s the stuff of our futuristic dreams, and you can be involved.

The best way to predict the future is to invent it. – Alan Kay

A lot of new career choices are also emerging, some of which would have seemed inconceivable just a couple of decades ago. So, how best to prepare for this shifting career terrain? For one thing, becoming a lifelong learner keeps you current, and that keeps you competitive.

With the world moving as fast as it is, we need to become a society of people who are always learning new things. – Julie Friedman Steele, World Future Society

The Career and Business Crystal Ball

Consider that many of today’s jobs barely existed 10-20 years ago, but are now commonplace and lucrative:

  • ipad-605420_960_720Mobile and tablet application developers
    Game designers and developers
  • Social media coordinators and managers
  • Web content developers
  • Big data miners and scientists
  • Personalization and automation specialists
  • Robotics and nano-technology scientists
  • User experience researchers and designers
  • Digital artists, animators, and illustrators
  • 3D printing manufacturers
  • Health, wellness and life extension practitioners
  • Life and career coaching
  • Renewable energy jobs

162 Jobs in the Future…

Free Agents

smartphone-1733892_960_720Free agent culture thrives in the film, media, and music industries and is beginning to spill over into the other creative and tech industries. With many freelance marketplaces available, professionals can gravitate towards project-based work. It’s not for everyone, but if flexibility and novelty drive you, becoming a free agent can be a great lifestyle choice. It also means that if you have several unique skillsets, you can work on projects in a variety of roles.

Free agents are:

  • Project managers
  • Graphic designers and illustrators
  • Digital and traditional artists
  • Film and video crews
  • Bloggers and podcasters
  • Photographers
  • Musicians
  • Web and application developers
  • Writers and journalists
  • Teachers and instructional designers
  • Speakers and coaches
  • Special needs and occupational therapists

Entrepreneurs and Small Business

teens-629046_960_720Becoming an entrepreneur has never been easier, given the technology, fund-raising, and marketing tools now widely available. Even if you are just in the idea or prototype phase, crowd-funding your endeavor is a real possibility. How do you know if your idea will appeal to modern consumers? Novelty, life enrichment, efficiency, and convenience are major drivers.

  • Technology start-ups – cloud-based services, wearables, virtual reality, pervasive/ubiquitous computing, and artificial intelligence.
  • Food-based businesses – artisanal food products, food delivery services, special diets, and health & wellness.
  • 3D printing – buildings, household items, organs, and even food!
  • Robotics and artificial intelligence – robots for manufacturing, caretaking, and dangerous jobs. AI and machine learning for better prediction and personalization.
  • Renewable energy and sustainability – solar, wind, and green building practices.
  • Urban, hydroponic, and vertical farming.
  • Cannabis businesses – growing, distribution, equipment, and edibles.
  • Online sellers – handmade items or small manufacturers selling through sites like Amazon and Etsy.
  • Lifelong learning providers – for in person and online learning.
  • Bio-medical devices – health and wellness monitoring and tracking, body augmentation.
  • Space exploration, mining, and tourism.
  • Citizen journalism, social activism, and education.

Jobs of the Future

blog2How do you prepare for jobs that don’t exist yet? With more exciting developments on the horizon, the jobs of the future will spring out of today’s innovations in bio-tech, climate adaptation, personal care, and a wide array of technological innovations. Future jobs will require more complex and specialized skills; things that robots and automation aren’t great for.

It’s going to take a long time for robots to be good at soft skills, like social and emotional intelligence and cross-cultural competency. – Fast Company



Essential Skills for Future Careers:

  • Digital and social media literacy
  • Adaptability and agility
  • Knowing how to learn
  • Networking and collaboration with others
  • Problem-solving
  • Critical thinking
  • Managing chaos
  • Simplifying and minimizing complexity
  • Entrepreneurial and creative thinking
  • Mentorship and coaching
  • Anticipating customer needs

Enter your interests and receive $10 off your first class!


Want to learn how to do something life-changing?
Check out thousands of upcoming classes on Connect2Classes.



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Embrace Social! Update Your Skills in Digital & Social Media Marketing

embrace social media and update your skills

Digital and social media are an important part of any marketer’s toolkit, but it does tend to be a bit confusing for the uninitiated. In reality, however, it isn’t that much different from traditional marketing. The goals are the same (raise awareness, convert potential customers, promote advocacy and word-of-mouth sharing), and social interactions online offer some great benefits and allow you to scale your marketing efforts beyond your current capacity. It’s also about being where your target markets are and social media offers great ways to connect with customers as they explore their interests. Facebook alone has 1.6 BILLION users so it is a huge opportunity to augment your marketing efforts.

we are social Source: SmartInsights

A few important reasons to take digital and social media marketing seriously, especially if your customers are avid Internet users:

Raise Awareness and Keep Your Brand Top of Mind

Building and maintaining awareness of your brand, products and services is a constant challenge. By having a robust presence on social media, you can promote your brand and offerings and make sure they are available where your potential customers already are. Read about the most popular social networks worldwide.

Demonstrate Credibility

Social media is a great way to establish your credibility in a space. You also demonstrate knowledge and credibility by connecting with and promoting others in your space. This means following influencers and commenting on or sharing their content. ‘Stand on the shoulders of giants’ is a good way to think about it. You can align your messaging and content with popular activity in the social sphere.

Real-time Engagement

Your digital marketing and social media efforts keep you involving customers and allow you to respond to questions or comments in real-time. Your customers can be huge advocates for you and will happily share your content across social media if you involve them.

Share Knowledge

Internet users tend to gravitate towards content that has value, meaning old marketing messages don’t work nearly as well as sharing tangible knowledge about things people care about. Social media can also be a great vehicle for customer service, if you make a point to respond quickly to customer questions and feedback. The more you respond, the more customers will gravitate towards those channels.

Penetrate Your Target Markets

Social media preferences tend to vary quite a lot by age and gender, and some social media sites (like LinkedIn) are centered around professional connections. You can also schedule content to be published and use hash-tags and boards on many of the services to keep your messages aligned with broader trends.

Respond In Real-time

A major area of value for the wired generations is the ability to conduct business in real-time. Social media is a great way to ensure your availability whenever someone has a question or feedback. You can also take it a step further by being available on chat networks (like Snapchat or Facebook Messenger) as well.

Be More Efficient (and Save Money)

Social media marketing is so important because it allows you to scale your efforts significantly and reaches a much larger audience. There are some great tools that allow you to post across multiple channels and set up automation so your voice is being heard even when you aren’t available. These are all really low-cost ways of getting your message out there.

Some Questions You Might Have

  • How can you align your digital strategy with your offline marketing efforts?
  • Which social media channels are best for engaging with your target audience?
  • What engagement and writing styles work best?
  • How often should you be posting to your blog or sending email?
  • Would social ads be a good investment for you?
  • How can you measure your success?

If you’re intrigued by these suggestions check out our social media and digital marketing classes or consider the following upcoming classes:

Online Courses

Quick 1-day Classes

In-depth Courses

  • 10-Week Digital Marketing Intensive
    A great place to start if you are wondering how digital marketing and social media can improve your business. Begins Oct 8th, Nov. 5th or Dec. 13th.
  • Site Audit Workshop
    This 6-week course will teach you the fundamentals of site analytics and improvement. Begins Oct. 20th.

What students say about our life-changing professional courses:

I attended the Web Development Immersive course. It changed my life. Within 1 1/2 months of graduation, I was offered a great job at a company that’s considered one of the top 5 to work for in the pacific NW. Starting next week I’ll be a Software Engineer making more than twice what I made in my previous career, and I enjoy the work much more.


Want to learn how to do something life-changing?
Check out thousands of upcoming classes on Connect2Classes.

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General Assembly Teaches Hard Skills for Software

General Assembly Seattle

Graduates of the Seattle branch of General Assembly may find jobs at Microsoft or Amazon, and the school’s campus in the historic Seattle Tower does boast a giant chalk mural of Mount Rainier. But the instruction is anything but provincial; rather, students will have the same experience right off Third Avenue in downtown Seattle as they would in London or Hong Kong. That, says local marketing manager Marina Rusinow, is very much by design.

Find Technology Classes and More

“We want students to have the same experience,” she says. “We want General Assembly to have this unified community where we can have a student come visit us who has taken a class in London or New York or San Francisco, and get the same boutique experience that they had here.”

Since 2011 the school has graduated tens of thousands of students from 15 outposts around the world. At every one, from the home base in New York City to the latest outpost in Singapore, General Assembly teaches data, design, and business skills with the same intensive curricula, based on concrete projects and portfolio-building.

Not only does this consistency facilitate learning, it also helps General Assembly place almost every graduate in a job. Each class teaches a high-demand skill, then takes students through the job-search process, so they can leverage it anywhere they want to go–or, in the case of tech jobs, where they are needed.

“Companies are struggling,” says Casey Hills, who works with GA’s employer partners. “They’ve tapped the computer-science programs at universities and there’s still a lack of talent. So we’re bridging that gap. Basically, if there’s an audience for it, we’ll put it together.

“Companies come to us first when they need that talent, because they know about our track record and they know about our training, they know about what kind of development students get in the program. It’s application versus theory–that’s the difference.” Mock interviews, portfolio reviews, and chances to network are just pieces of this application.
“We really do want to create this amazing pool of talent,” Rusinow adds, “and I think the fact that we create so much opportunity for our students during and after the program is our biggest competitive advantage.”
GA Seattle classes
But even with uniform classes, General Assembly does not expect its students to fit a particular bill. Quite the opposite, says Hills, pointing to a dance instructor, a DJ, and even a standout teen who, with no previous tech experience, learned to code in 12 weeks and got hired right out of the program. That’s the standard, he says, not the exception.

GA also offers scholarships to groups underrepresented in tech, specifically women and minorities. A separate application process lets GA’s partner companies invest in the future of the tech industry. So each course, Hills insists, looks like “a microcosm of Seattle.”

Reflecting its community is a point of pride for GA Seattle and does guide some of its programming, such as Made in Seattle Week, a discussion series that takes place on the campus and celebrates innovation in our community. The school also hosts a wealth of free workshops for those hoping to test the waters. Prospective students ready for the deep end have several options: commit to a part- or full-time class, online or in-person.

As Hills assures us, “What we’ve seen is, if they have the passion, if they have the urgency, if they have the drive, they are successful in their job search.”

Connect2Classes helps smart, curious Seattleites find courses at more than 100 education providers in the Puget Sound area. Search and sign up for the best classes in the city; from cooking and web design to photography and beyond, through this free online class marketplace. Learn a new skill or hone an existing one to discover how much you can learn and achieve! Hundreds of classes are at your fingertips!

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Seattle products and services to support your learning


Are you learning something new?

We want to introduce you to some fabulous businesses in Seattle who support lifelong learning. Whether you are taking cooking classes, dance, arts or technology you’ll be looking for products and services that support your learning. Mrs. Cook’s in University Village offers 10% discounts on Connect2Classes Cooking students, and if you need a laptop for school, Interconnection has affordable technology so everyone has the tools they need to learn.

Mrs. Cook’s University Village

Mrs. Cook’s is a locally owned, neighborhood business We are a complete kitchen store, filling the needs of Seattle cooks for 39 years. Our knowledgeable staff love to talk cooking whether its questions from the novice home cook or the professional chef. We carry a wide range of products from cookie cutters and pastry tips to nationally known brands like Vitamix, Kitchenaid and All-Clad. We are located in University Village directly across from the elevators in the south garage. Stop by, mention this post and get 10% off your entire purchase of the kitchen tools needed to hone your new skills.

Low-Cost Computers for Students! –

Need a laptop or computer for school? InterConnection has laptops and desktops starting at $99. InterConnection is a Seattle based 501c3 nonprofit organization with a mission to provide individuals access to affordable technology. InterConnection is a Microsoft Registered Refurbisher which means all of the refurbished computers come with Windows 7, undergo an extensive quality control process, and come with a 1 year warranty.

E. Smith Mercantile

Smith Mercantile was born out of a desire to create a space that, more than anything feeds its community and fosters the creative growth that comes from establishing this ‘tribe’ connection. The Back Bar is an extension of the artful life we promote with our mercantile goods. Inspired by the history of using alcohol as a vessel for the medicinal qualities of plants, we create seasonal herbal, fruit and floral infusions in combination with classic cocktail recipes. Not only are they a great cure for sobriety, but they taste damn fine.

Ugly Baby and La Ru

Ugly Baby and La Ru is located in the historic Pike Place Market. The co-owners, Rosalie Gale of Ugly Baby and Lauren Rudeck of La Ru joined forces and combined their business names to create the oddity that is Ugly Baby and La Ru. Find waterproof art for your shower, handmade local art for grownups, cute animals fighting each other and D.I.Y craft kits made by indie artists. Attend one of their fun events like their Etsy Craft parties, or their day before Easter Sunday Bunny Party! Pet a bunny; support Seattle Animal Shelter.


Located in Seattle’s Greenwood Neighborhood, Moonphoto is a professional photography lab that makes high quality photographs from digital files, film, and old photos. While photography has changed dramatically over the past few years, and most labs have closed, we have kept up with the changes and continue our mission to make good photographs better, and better photographs great. We love a good photograph in any form, be it film or digital, and strive to keep the look and feel of traditional photographs whatever the source.

District Fabric

District Fabric is inspired by the world’s colorful and vibrant Fabric Districts and provides Seattle area artists, designers and sewists with a unique selection of quality materials. We specialize in fabrics for apparel and costuming. Here you’ll find a carefully curated collection that is continually updated as we find new and unusual treasures. Our stock of fabric includes everything from discounted sparkle tulles and polyesters to high end silks and woolens. Come visit and rummage through our fabric piles, you never know what you’ll find!

JF Henry Cooking & Dining

F. Henry Cooking & Dining has been in business 30 years. We are a full service kitchenware store that also has Seattle’s largest selection of dinnerware from casual to fine china. We offer competitive pricing on all of our dinnerware, flatware and glassware. Our unique and friendly shop is conveniently located in a gracious vintage building in West Seattle, complete with an elegant staircase and chandelier from the old Frederick & Nelson downtown store. Stop by or give us a call, we’ll be happy to help you with any of your kitchen needs.

Petticoat Junction Dance Shop

Petticoat Junction carries shoes and apparel, gifts & accessories for all types of dancers… from ballroom competitors to social dancers, ballet beginners to jazz enthusiasts and square dancers, cloggers, swing and lindy hoppers. Visit our shop in Lynwood or our online store which features some of our best-selling items! You name it, we’ll help you look your best!

Portage Bay Goods in Fremont!

The gift shop for the thoughtful procrastinator! Irreverent, local, and awesome. Located in the heart of the Fremont neighborhood in Seattle, Portage Bay Goods has been a part of the community since 1998. We offer super-duper-way-better than average last minute gifts, great stuff for the kiddos, fun and functional products, and seriously the best card selection this side of the Cascades!

Top Ten Toys

The largest independent toy store in the northwest. Featuring over 25,000 toys, specializing in wooden, educational and classic toys. Be sure to visit our downtown location on the 3rd floor of Pacific Place! Located downtown on 6th and Pine. Our mission at Top Ten Toys is to keep healthy play alive. Thank you for voting us the winner of the 2015 Golden Teddy awards! We’re honored to be your favorite toy store!

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Meet Jeff Barlow: Typography Instructor, 80’s Rock Aficionado and Salmon Griller

Jeff Barlow

Jeff Barlow teaches Typography at the School of Visual Concepts in Seattle. To say Jeff’s design enthusiasm is contagious is an understatement. Jeff has immersed himself in the design community in Seattle and has shared his love of design, concept and typography with individuals and large groups. His poster work and ideas have been featured in the HOW International Design Annual, the HOW Self-Promotion Annual, and Communication Arts. His design experience includes work for Starbucks, Expedia, National MS Society, Make-A-Wish Foundation, Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, and The Who!

We asked Jeff some questions about teaching and other random things:

What three words of advice would you give your younger self?

See Iron Maiden. (C2C: I think we are going to see a pattern here.)

What brought you to teaching?

I am very vocal about my love for Typography and someone asked me to teach a typography course at one of the local design schools. I had been doing that for a while when I heard about the unique approach of SVC (all classes taught by professionals) so I reached out to the SVC Leaders. They had a class that needed an instructor and the rest is history — I’ll keep teaching there as long as they’ll let me.

What do you enjoy the most about teaching and why?

Two things. First, I love when I have a student who really doesn’t understand much about the subject I’m teaching, and all of a sudden I see the light come on in their eyes. They’ve grasped the new concept(s) and now they can never go back. Second, I love when students go away with an assignment and come back with a project that just blows my mind — They’ve created something that has a great idea and a brilliant execution. I’ve seen so many students come up with work that’s better than I could do myself and it’s really inspiring.

What person in history would you like to have over for dinner? What would you cook?

From design history? Adrian Frutiger. I’d serve barbecued salmon.

From real history? Jim Lovell. I could talk about the NASA Apollo program forever. He’d also get the salmon.

How has teaching impacted your views on life?

I’ve decided that a teacher is not a person in front of a class, or a person with some title. A teacher is someone who makes the people around them better. I’ve been lucky enough to have a lot of wonderful teachers in my life and less than half of them have been in classroom settings.

How do you inspire your students? Do you have a particular teaching style? If so, how would you describe it?

I don’t know if I have a particular teaching style. I try to set up circumstances where the students can learn from each other. I also know that I’m very easily distracted and it’s hard to pay attention in a classroom setting. So when I’m in front of the class I just try to come up with stuff that wouldn’t bore me if I was one of the students.

What is your guilty pleasure?

KISS Double Platinum. Or anything with dark chocolate.

Do you, or have you taught other subjects? Tell us more!

I used to teach a class on Annual Report Design. I’ve also spoken at conferences and taught conference workshops on Design and Typography. Here’s an example of the work from a type workshop I taught at a Seattle Design conference.

If you could learn one thing immediately today, what would it be?

A leadership class on when to push and when to back off.

If you could travel in time, where/when would you go?

Easy. Feb 9, 1964. The Ed Sullivan Theater.

What quote seems like it is speaking directly to you?

That’s not contrast! Paul Rand.

What are some of your favorite resources on the subjects you teach? Books, blogs, associations, even movies.

The Annual of the New York Type Directors Club.

A History of Graphic Design (Phil Meggs).

Describe a funny, inspiring or random story about a class you gave or took.

I was driving down the street one day and across the street I saw one of my students from several years before. He saw me and started violently waving his arms as if he were in some sort of emergency. I had to know what the problem was so I stopped and rolled down my window. He crossed two lanes of traffic and came up to my car. With a big smile he told me that he was glad that he had run into me because had thought of me just the other night. He and his girlfriend had been watching a movie and he made her watch the opening credits in slow motion. And of course, he never would have done that before taking my typography class. His girlfriend has never met me, but I think she hates me.

Jeff is teaching Whole Brain Typography October 16, 2015. You just might want to get in on that!

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Made in Seattle Week

Made IN Seattle week

Our friends at General Assembly are celebrating their one year anniversary in Seattle in style! They have created a week of education to highlight great local products being developed in the city — from tech and design to music, food, and beer. From Monday, June 1- Friday, June 5 they are bringing people from all backgrounds together to foster collaboration through education. You can learn a bit more about some of the great work others are doing across a variety of disciplines all over Seattle.

Trending in Tech

Monday, June 1, 2015

The week starts on Monday with keynote speakers from tech companies born in Seattle including Zulily, Zillow, and Moz talking about their perspectives on innovation. You’ll hear from the best leaders right here at home about how products can change a traditional industry, how corporations can foster ingenuity within the startup scene and how company culture can be made into an invaluable resource for innovation.

Food for the Future

Tuesday, 2 June

Panelists from restaurants and food-related businesses born in Seattle like Chaco Canyon, Seattle Tilth, and others will talk about food sustainability and culture. You’ll hear from leaders from different sides of the food industry talks about their biggest concerns for food today, including fair wages and practices for farmers and growers, sourcing and sustainability, and what the future of food looks like locally.

Disruptive Design

Wednesday, 3 June

Keynote speakers from design-centric companies born in Seattle will talk about groundbreaking design in our culture and economy. You’ll hear from innovators from companies like Built by Civilization, Artefact, Meld Home, and Miller Hull about experiences that cross the boundaries of physical and digital, including topics such as hardware design, disrupting your workspace and workflow, and an informed outlook on a digital future.

Brew Your Business

Thursday, 4 June

Panelists from your favorite breweries in Seattle will gather to share insights into the professional world of beer. You’ll hear from the brewmasters themselves about their early days and how their vision transformed into the local companies we know and love. Drink and learn about everything from what beer making looks like as a hobby to where experts from Ghostfish, Fremont, and Hilliards see the future of microbreweries in Seattle.

Makers in Music

Friday, 5 June

Panelists from various aspects of the Seattle music scene will discuss digital technologies and their impact on the music industry. You’ll hear from thought leaders and acclaimed musicians that rose to fame in Seattle about how the distribution of songs and albums has been shaped by the internet’s free market, how the relationship between record labels and artists has adjusted to the times, and what the future of music looks like in a digital world.

Follow the conversation with their hashtag #MadeinSEA.

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