Thanks for the compliments! I decided to start grooming Potsie to save money. At $50 a groom, my main clipper, an Andis, paid for itself after only 3 grooms! Potsie's not a show dog, so if he doesn't look perfect - oh well, it'll grow, right? I still haven't mastered the top knot and ears - sigh... BUT, I think I do a better job on Potsie's feet than any professional I've paid (probably b/c I'm a perfectionist, and it takes me awhile to get them this way, whereas a groomer doesn't have time to do this).
I have a separate, much smaller cordless clipper for his feet and his private areas that I got cheap - $30 - at Tractor Supply. I use a finishing blade on my Andis clipper to shave his body hair, b/c I'm too lazy to scissor all that hair! I only scissor the hair that the finishing blade can't get to properly. I have a medium sized Wahl clipper (got it for free from my MIL), with an adjustable blade, that I use on Potsie's face.
To learn, I looked at pictures and tried to copy them. I also belong to a poodle forum that has several groomers as members. They're nice about giving advice, even to us struggling home groomers.
I hope your poodle's ears look better than Potsie's do! Poor guy - my boxer puppy keeps yanking hair out of Potsie's ears when they play. Poor Potsie won't have any hair left if this keeps up!
He's doing you a favor, poodle ear hair is out of control most of the time and you have to pluck it out of the inside of their ears and they arnt partial to that either.
Luckily, Potsie doesn't grow much hair down inside his ears (thank goodness; when I used to groom my MIL's cockapoo, she had a lot of ear hair - ugh!), and I don't have to pluck them very often. I also shave out the part of the ear on the lower edge where it connects to the head. You can't see it when the ears lay down, and it keeps the ears fairly hair free.