3 Tips for Making the Most of Your Sewing Time

Joseph's Coat
Joseph's Coat

I am a member of the “Civil Sewing Circle” that meets once a month.  Each month we get patterns and fabrics to make four blocks. The meetings started in August and by now we should have 24 blocks completed (can you see where I am going with this?).

I got behind pretty quickly and by the end of December, I only had SIX blocks completed (as in 25% of the blocks).  I’ve included a pictures of a few of the blocks I made so far.  This quilt is a lot of fun and I look forward to completing it sometime next year.


However, once the New Year began, I vowed to get caught up and knew I needed to make some changes in how I managed my time.

One thing I’ve started doing is sewing at least 30 minutes a day.  I am surprised at how much I can get done in an hour (even if it is comprised of 10 minute spurts throughout the day).  I keep a small basket with my latest project next to the machine and sew when I can.  This is more efficient if I have everything cut out and ready to go the beforehand.

Flying Geese
Flying Geese

Which brings me to my next tip.  Dedicate a few hours each month to cutting out three projects to work on.  This way, you can store all the cut pieces, instructions, and other notions in a project bag and have it ready for your thirty minutes of daily sewing time.  This is helpful because cutting out the project is oftentimes the task that requires the most room and creates the most mess.  By cutting out multiple projects ahead of time, you can make a single BIG mess once a month, and then more manageable smaller messes the rest of the time.

For things that involve a larger commitment (like sewing 4 civil war blocks a month, or a scrappy house block a day), I use the “timebox” method.  Timeboxing is where you set aside a block of time and do as much work as you can (the time box).  This works great on the weekends when I can set aside 3 – 4 hours at a time to work on projects.  I put this block of time on my schedule and treat it like a meeting (this is the project manager in me coming out).

So far, this has been a success.  What are some tips you have for managing your sewing time?

Keep It Thimble!

8 thoughts on “3 Tips for Making the Most of Your Sewing Time

  1. Love your blocks! The only way I get mine finished is to leave my sewing machine and cut blocks out. That way, I have to finish because I get tired of the clutter! But, my husband and son are very patient, and step over my cords with no accidents yet!

  2. I cut out and put the items that need to be sewn together in a box. I too leave a box of “ready to sew” items next to my sewing machine.
    When hubby is busy with a project, I have noticed that I have more uninterrupted time to sew. Though he still wants meals and cloths, so I do have to come out of the sewing room once in awhile. I try to sew three or four times a week. An hour on week days, and more on weekends, depending on what is planned. I look forward to softball season, it begins mid march. More time to plan, cut, and sew. I do go to about half of the games, I enjoy taking my hand sewing along.

    1. Good point about how when your husband has a project you have more time to sew! I also like to take handwork with me when I go places as I often will have a few minutes while waiting here and there.

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