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  • How to make the most out of your sewing time

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    Justine Cowie

    I can only speak from my personal experience, somehow I always feel like I need more time in the sewing room! So when my time is cut short, and it can be preventable – I am not happy. I always try to follow a few little rules when I start a project, I wanted to share them with you all.


    Plan your shopping trips (if you need to go at all)

    One thing that can make or break a sewing project is a trip to the store mid way through a project. Before you sit down at your sewing machine make sure you make a list of everything you need: Fabric, zipper, buttons, thread, specific needles, the right sewing feet etc.

    If you are buying fabric be sure to take a photo on your phone or write down the fabric composition and care details. I have made a folder on my phone called “fabric details” as my fabric stash seems to keep growing! No matter what the project is I find its always best to read through of the sewing instructions prior to my trip to the shop. This way you won’t be surprised halfway through a project.

    Fabric shopping via Pinterest

    Setting goals with the time frame in mind

    Set yourself small goals achievable in the time window you have for your next sewing time. Try not to put so much pressure to finish a project in one or two sittings, I find this approach always leads to mistakes. When time is short sometimes you may skip a step and not properly read the instructions or make a silly mistake when cutting and waste precious fabric! Try to enjoy the process and that way, you may even learn something along the way. The aim is to set these goals then you get satisfaction after each sewing session, no matter how much time you have.


    No distractions (if possible)

    Turn off your phone, the fewer distractions the better! And we all know how distracting someone’s new make on Instagram can be! Some people may not have the luxury of turning their phone off due to commitments and I completely understand that, so if you do need to keep your phone on you, try to keep it out of reach and have a “no social media” rule while you are at your sewing table. 


    Cut out several projects at once and make this a separate sewing session

    If you’re anything like me, you will have a lot of styles on your “to-sew list” which can mean a lot of cutting out :/ I like to dedicate one sewing session to cutting out. When I don’t have much time, I dedicate that time to cutting out all my projects. That way when I am ready to sew, I just have to sit down and start the machine up! It’s a lot easier to get into the sewing groove and keep motivation high.


    2nd sewing session – sit down and sew

    I always tidy up my workspace, if possible after my cutting session or before I sit down to sew. My sewing room can get chaotic when it’s messy, it drains my sewjo and is less than inspiring when I have patterns and fabric everywhere! When it’s clean I feel much more calm, inspired and relaxed.

    Pinboard inspo via Pinterest

    Sewing supplies

    Make sure you have all supplies needed at your fingertips. Those of you lucky to have a pinboard with all your tools hanging in front of you, you understand how much easier it is to reach and grab your scissors rather than get up from your machine. If you don’t have a dedicated sewing space, I find it easier to make sure I have all my sewing tools right next to me so I don’t have to get up off my seat and step away from the machine. This also includes your sewing machine manual – should anything happen, make sure it’s in reaching distance.

    Dreamy sewing corner via bohemiandiesel on Pinterest

    Anyone ever get so frustrated when they are on a roll and then your scissors are blunt or even worse… your iron “has a moment”? I regularly check in on all my tools and make sure my scissors are sharpened and even make sure the light globes in my sewing room are working.. Or I have back up globes. No one can work in a dark room!


    These are a few simple tips I have always followed to maximize my sewing time. Everyone leads such busy lives these days, our sewing time is precious so why not make the most out of it!

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