Wednesday, June 10, 2015
In the most recent issue of Love Patchwork & Quilting magazine, regular columnist and contributor, Jeni Baker, gives a few tips for saving time in the sewing room and maximizing the actual time that you can spend sewing. Her tips were insightful and gave me something to think about in regards to my own projects:
*Plan and prep your projects ahead of time - Jeni said that she saves time when she sets aside time to plan a project, i.e. look for material sources, fabric prep, washing, etc. She suggests to do this at all once because it saves time. There is no need to decide what project to work on because it's already prepped, and you can simply sit down and start sewing.
*Repeat steps. When you are cutting, cut everything. When you are pinning, pin everything. When you are ironing, iron everything... well, you get the point. Flipping back and forth from station to station can cause you to lose valuable time.
"Planned creativity" is somewhat of a new concept for me... it almost sounds like a contradiction. I often find myself working according to inspiration, and may not want to work on an already prepared project at that particular time. On the other hand, it is definitely something for me to seriously consider to be more disciplined with my projects. Without question, following such a suggestion results in far less WIP's.
When I start a new project, I can hardly wait to just sit down and start sewing, so I usually cut what is necessary to do so. Sometimes in the middle of one project however, I actually feel like I need to mix things up, take a mental break, and work on some other step. For instance I might get bored with cutting and need to move onto another process, or even project, or I find that I lose interest. Does this statement give any hint as to why I avoided quilting for the longest time?
One thing that "time saving sewing" does not allow for is when issues or difficult design decisions arrise. If I run into a problem, or I am simply not feeling inspired to work a certain WIP, then it often works best for me to set it aside. When I force myself to work on what I'm not inspired to do, then I end up making major mistakes... and I mean sit-down-on-the-couch-with-your-seam-ripper-for-the-evening mistakes.
We are planning a little trip where I will also have a little time to sew and I am excited to make progress on my two major WIP's. Cutting is finished, then it's just sit down and sew time. I will be interested to see if I actually have as much time to sew as I would like, or if other distractions will keep me busy. Either way, it feels nice to have everything prepared.
How about you, do you plan your creativity or do you just let it happen? Do you do assembly line sewing, or flip back and forth between steps?