Time Management

A small break from sewing. I promise that I'll get back to sewing very soon (I'm working on a post about cutting out & altering pattern pieces!), but I wanted to ask you all something: where did the last week go? Somehow I forgot this over the summer, but grad school is time-consuming! I read a lot of sewing/craft blogs, and so many of those ladies (and you ladies?) have families and jobs and sometimes Etsy shops, and yet they (you?) still manage to find time to sew and craft and write about it. It just blows me away, because I can barely manage to make time for sewing, and I only have myself to worry about. How do they do it? How do you do it? How do you find the time for all of the sometimes time-consuming steps involved in sewing, when there are always other things that must be done? I am determined to finish a muslin for the bodice of the dress this weekend (good call, Kelli, on not needing a muslin for the skirt portion), but I also have to grade 100 quizzes, read about 200 pages, and catch up on laundry and various errands.* There are only so many hours in the day, and I would like to spend at least a few of those hours with my friends and/or boyfriend. How do you find time to sew? Does anyone have any time-management tips? Do I just need to manage my time better and schedule time at my sewing machine? Perhaps I should stop reading sewing blogs for hours and just do some sewing myself? If anyone has any special tricks, help me out! And if anyone would like to just commiserate and share their tales of busyness and woe, that's fine too. And I promise, my next dispatch will be about sewing, hopefully about my successful experience altering the bodice pattern.

* One of those errands might be buying more fabric that I don't, strictly speaking, need. I don't mean to shill for a big huge corporation--I try to shop at local, independent fabric stores whenever I can--but Hancock Fabrics is having ridiculous sales all month. Kona Cotton is $2.98/yard (!!!) this weekend, and most of their stock is either 30% off all month or 52% off for a specific weekend. I would never encourage anyone to buy fabric or sewing supplies they don't necessarily "need" (that might be a lie), but if there's something you've been thinking about buying, check out the flyer at their website, because 52% off is just crazypants.


  1. Sorry, I don't have any tips, I'm in the same boat. Actually, I think my boat is probably less busy than yours but I still manage to not get a lot done. I think perhaps I need to put the brakes on my blog reading. But I love all the inspiration. Still, I'm probably at inspiration saturation and need to put some of into action. Good luck, I hope you do get some good tips, I'll be checking.

  2. Anonymous14.9.09

    I am a single parent with a full time job. I have found with my new job that I am not able to read as many blogs as I used to, nor comment as I used to, nor update my blog as I used to. My sewing has gone down to zero! However, as with anything I've done in the past, if I set up a deadline for myself, I usually make it on time or just a week or two off. I think dedicating time every day is something we have to do in order to make any headway on our projects. Dawn at Two on Two off sews in the morning before work. There are some sewists that make sure they do 30 minutes every day. That could mean only pinning and sewing one seam or dart, but they slowly make progress every day. I think I am going to try to make that a goal for me. Best of luck to you!

  3. Anonymous14.9.09

    I find it helps me to prioritise 1. Things that have to be done (work) 2. Things that make me happy (sewing) 3. Things that I can let slide (cleaning house!) I also like to make my sewing time a little reward to myself for doing something that needs to be done eg: If I finish making the dinner, writing that report, mopping the floors (whatever!) then I can sew for an hour.

  4. Wow, how does one do it? I have no idea. You should see the pile of laundry that I had to kick to the side in order to sit down at my computer. I can't do it all, but each day I make a list a try to do as much of it as I can and whatever doesn't get done gets lumped in with tomorrow.

  5. I think Leoni said it well: prioritize. There are things you must do, but offset them with things you want to do (sew). Realize that no one really gets their to-do list finished on any given day. Most important: don't beat yourself up when you feel you're not doing "enough" because no one really knows how much "enough" is. If you are warm, content, and can smile as you snuggle into the blankets, that means a lot.

  6. Prioritizing! Yes, Leoni, that is such a good point. (And I love your examples for each level of priority!) I think that combined with eword10's idea about making sure to sew at least a little bit every day, could really be helpful. I find that if I don't sew for a few days, it feels much harder to sit down at my machine and remember what my hands are supposed to be doing.

    This week, I've also tried to think about how long I actually want to spend on a specific task before I start it. It's easy to let schoolwork expand to take up an entire day, but I've done well so far at deciding to finish Thing X in 2 hours, instead of letting it take up 6 hours.

    Maggie, I feel you on the 'inspiration saturation.' I get lost in all of the inspiration that's out there, and sometimes even a bit overwhelmed by how many amazing creative people are out there.

    And Rian & San-Dee, thank you; I think sometimes I need to remind myself that much as I would like to, I can't actually do everything, at least not all in one day. Possibly I'm a bit impatient? But yes, San-Dee, being warm & happy & busy doing things that I genuinely enjoy is not such a bad thing.