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Different people learn in different ways. Lots of people I know learn new techniques by taking classes. I learn new techniques by reading.
I was lucky enough to grow up in a town with a wonderful public library system. The Thomas Crane Public library has a large collection of hand craft books. My family's usual Friday afternoon routine was to come home from school and then to load up on books for the weekend.
This image of the Thomas Crane library comes from Quincy Daily Photo, http://www.quincydailyphoto.blogspot.com/ a blog that I visit daily for glimpses of my home town. Architecture geeks may recognize this as being a H.H. Richardson building. The building is a gem, beautiful even when unrenovated. It has recently undergone a spectacular renovation.
When I was in high school I was obsessed with needlepoint. I purchased a huge encyclopedia of needlepoint stitches with terrific diagrams and directions and proceeded to work my way through that book. So when I began to sew, I bought books so I could learn what to do.
After a while I began to stumble on old sewing books in antique stores and in thrift stores. I loved them. I love learning how to do things the low tech, no bells and whistles way. I assume if I learn how to do something the low tech way, I will understand the basic principles behind the process and will have more versatility in how I problem solve.