Back in January I posted about my sewing resolutions this year - several things I wanted to remind myself to do right, for better results! Those resolutions were mostly about sewing quality and ease, but #4 was "Schedule time." I'm still working on that one, so thoughts about this post have been guiding me on that one!
While my sewing resolutions were about quality, this post - 5 tips for getting into a sewing groove! - is about efficiency in sewing, and enjoyment of it. Because most of us are probably doing this because it's fun, and most of us probably do it as a hobby so we have to fit it in between other things! So let's do it efficiently, and keep it fun. Get into a groove!
Here are 5 ways I've found I can get focused, get sewing, and have fun!
5 tips for getting into your sewing groove
1. Set aside time (this one's obvious), within reason.Of course part of the problem is that we don't have enough time for everything, so of course we don't have 6 spare hours to spend working on a dress or slipcover or whatever. Unfortunately we often have to break up sewing sessions into multiple days (or stay up really late, if that's your thing). So find a compromise! Give yourself a good amount of time (even if you don't have quite enough for the perfect length of time), and do tips 2 and 3...
2. Pick a goal milestone to reach.My mom always talked about getting projects to the "hanger stage." Like, a success worth mentioning was that she got two garments to the hanger stage that afternoon, ready to hang them on hangers and get them out of the way to make room for other work. (Also a win: the "try-on stage"!)You may not finish your project, but if you can get it to the point where you know you'll like how it looks, it's a lot less stressful to put it down.
You can also...
3. Find your happy sewing time.Some of us are "morning people," others work better late at night. Think back to when you had school deadlines or other big projects to do - did you do your best work first thing on the weekend, or did you prefer to stay up later than usual to really focus and cram? It may be that that timeframe still works best for you for today's projects, like sewing rather than math homework.
4. Find media you enjoy.I love getting into the zone on evenings by myself with Mindy Project or Modern Family marathons, or Gilmore Girls if I want to go back even further in syndication... or, I turn on Pandora to a station I'm in the mood for and enjoy that if I need to focus more on the project. I also have a nice ritual of Saturday morning catching up to my favorite podcasts that aired Thursday and Friday, often while sewing or doing chores. (Faves: Pop Culture Happy Hour from NPR and Balanced Bites.)
As for strategizing and working more efficiently (listening to TV shows is not geared at increasing efficiency, just enjoyment!)...
5. Cut out more than one project at once. (But not more than a manageable amount.)For most of us, cutting is a pain because unless you have a tall, large, clear table to use, you may be doing it on the floor or on a cramped table space, and you may have to move things out of the way to get enough room. Also, cutting is often the hardest part of a project, and you need concentration (or at least the right mindset and a big chunk of time) to do it right. Big chunks of time and concentration are not always rich around here. So I like to design a few projects and let them accumulate in my cutting list, then cut out 2 or 3 at once. (Sometimes I'm even using the same pattern for a couple of them, which is extra handy--only have to get it out once and can sometimes use one lining as a pattern for the other dress!)
They may be easier said than done at times! But, thinking about tips really helps me have fun and get lots done when I want to!
What are your tips for getting to work at the sewing table?? I'd love to hear!