Wednesday, October 26, 2011

I don't have TIME to sew...and other creative myths #1.

The idea of working on a a project, can be more over whelming than the project itself. I'm a busy wife and mom but I make time to create. It feeds my soul in numerous ways and if I neglect my creative side for too long I has a negative impact on my psyche. Really. I truly believe creativity is good for one's mental and emotional state and probably even spiritual state.

I want to enlighten you to many of the myths we tell ourselves to hold back those creative forces and offer you the truth...or at least some creative solutions to the obstacles that hold us back. This series will focus on one myth per post and offer some tips and tricks to help over come the creative myth.

Creative Myth #1

I don't have time to sew!

Break it down into bite size creative chunks: Any project can be broken down in to smaller time increments. For example, cut your fabric pieces one day and put it away. The next day sew parts of it together. The day after that, do the hem. etc. You get the idea. Fight the feeling that you *must* complete a project in one sitting.

Learn short cuts: if you're making a clothing item for around the house, let's say for a child, it does not need to be perfect. Especially play or lounge clothes! The children won't notice or care. They don't need French Seams or that every seam be serged. Of course you want it to last until they out grow it, but that usually happens sooner rather than later. Pinking shears (the scissors that cut in a zig-zag pattern) are very useful to help prevent fabric from fraying. Save the attention to detail for special occasions.

Ditch the pattern: patterns are great tools for learning to sew new items. They are not always necessary though.  You can find lots of free tutorials online these days that instruct how to create various sewn object using pictures and instructions. Using patterns unnecessarily uses up valuable time. 

For example:Do you really need a pattern to create a skirt? Guess what? NO! A basic skirt is a tube of fabric! Get it? Cut a large strip, sew up the side and fold down the top, sew leaving a small opening. Insert elastic OR even better a ribbon you can tie to fit you perfectly. If you are an *absolute* beginner and have *never* sewn anything before, then look online for how-to's to fill in the fine details.

You can use clothing you already have as a sizing guide instead of purchasing a pattern and taking time to figure it out and cut out the pieces.

Leave your machine out: I know, you're worried about what type of example you'll be setting for your kids if you don't put away your supplies *as soon as you finish*, right? Well, you are NOT finished! It can be tedious to have to unpack your sewing machine each and every time, just to have to immediately repack it away because the baby woke up unexpectedly or the 8 year old needs help with their spelling words or you smell the brownies you forgot about, burning--you get the idea.

Leave it out! If you are using your dining table to sew, then store it under the table where you can easily access it tomorrow. When you have only 10 or 20 minutes, you need to conserve those seconds when you can! You can put away the machine when you are expecting company. ;-)

What you can do with ONLY 20 minutes:
cut fabric pieces
sew a dress
sew a hem
sew a casing for skirt or child pants
attach two legs for a pair or lounge pants
cut fabric for an owl pillow
cut squares for a quilt
pin a 'quilt sandwich'
measure your child's waist and legs for width & length of pants (don't forget to write it down)
Find an item of clothing in the closet that fits well, to use as a sizing guide.
gather a ruffle or a skirt

You get the idea. Once you get started and have everything in perspective, you will be amazed how much you CAN get accomplished in very little time at all.

Hey! Go set up your machine and get started before the brownies burn. ;-)

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