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10 Sewing Adjacent Hobbies to Try

Episode 162: From crochet to block printing, these creative hobbies will enhance your future sewing projects in so many ways.

Posted in: Seamwork Radio Podcast, Fabric & Textiles • October 11, 2023 • Episode 162

Have you been curious about picking up a new creative hobby? Even if you think you might already have enough hobbies, keep reading to learn why there might be room for one more.

In this week’s podcast episode, Sarai and Haley share ten hobbies besides sewing that you can incorporate into your creative practice.

They’ll cover how these sewing related hobbies can be a source of inspiration for your sewing, what their ten favorites hobbies are, and how each of them can enhance your future sewing projects in different ways.

Below are the show notes for this podcast episode, and a brief summary of what's covered, followed by a full transcript.

10 Sewing-Adjacent Hobbies to Try

Here are some of Sarai and Haley’s favorite sewing-adjacent hobbies. Listen to the full episode (or read the transcript below) to hear why they love them so much.


  • It will teach you patience. You have to be okay fixing time-consuming mistakes.

  • You’ll learn about the structure of fabrics, like knitwear. Ever wonder how rib knit is made? You’ll learn.

  • You get to learn about different fibers. You’ll be working with them in a more raw form, so it’s an opportunity to nerd out about textiles.

  • You can style your knit projects alongside your sewing projects, which adds a whole new dimension to your me-made wardrobe.


  • You can’t replicate crochet by machine, so every crocheted project was made entirely by human hands.

  • You can incorporate crochet into your sewing projects. Crochet straps, a yoke, or details.

  • Granny squares are experimental, portable, versatile crochet experiments you can use for a few minutes of mind soothing handwork.

  • Crochet is really strong, so try it out for dog toys!


  • You learn a high level of precision. You’re working with quarter-inch seam allowances. Piecing will help you practice precise sewing.

  • You can play with fun tools! Quilters use the best rulers and notions for their craft.

  • Quilted clothes are classic, whether it’s just a patch, am entire quilted garment, or an accessory.

  • You’ll get more adventurous about mixing and matching colors and prints.


  • See Sarai’s embroidered Aims blouse here!

  • If you get impatient or feel prickly when you have to stitch by hand, embroidery will help make it more fun.

  • You can plan, sketch, and create your own designs for embroidery.

  • Improv embroidery is just as fun as following a pattern.

  • The history of embroidery is really rich, dynamic, and a great art to explore if you need some inspiration.


  • It feels like science! It gets you into that experimental mindset.

  • There's no guarantees, so you have to roll with imperfection.

  • If you hate the color of your fabric, dye it again!

  • There are so many niches to explore. We have a bunch of resources in the Seamwork archives. Links are above in the show notes!

Screenprinting or Block Printing

  • You get to use a totally new medium—ink!

  • If you like to draw, this is a cool way to incorporate your art into your me-made clothing.

  • You get to play with tech depending on how you burn your screens.

  • Block printing is a more low-investment way to do this

Weaving or Spinning—Make Your Own Fibers!

  • You learn a lot about structure of fabric and different fibers.

  • You won’t balk at fabric prices ever again. It’s hard work!

  • Weaving on a loom is very physical, and very rewarding of you enjoy hands-on hobbies.

  • You’ll have ownership over the whole process of creating your garment from the bottom up.

Shoe Making

  • You learn a lot about leather, different tools, and findings, things that maybe you don't have an opportunity to use in your day to day sewing.

  • You get to wear a literal head-to-toe me-made outfit.

  • All parts of shoe making feel 3-dimensional. Whereas in sewing you don't see that until the end, when you're crafting shoes, you're working in three dimensions the entire time

  • We have a leather house shoe and espadrilles tutorial linked in the show notes above.


  • Learning about all the different leatherworking tools can be really inspiring.

  • You can take your bag making to the next level and trade canvas tote bags for leather ones.

  • You can also incorporate leather elements into your me-made clothing, like straps or accents.

  • Leather goods are the ultimate scrap projects. The amount of things you can fit on one hide is amazing.

Punch needle

  • This is a fun, trendy hobby to pick up for instant gratification.

  • You can bring fiber art into your home for all to see and you to enjoy every day, so it’s a good motivation to sew more home decor.

  • Punch needle bags would look so cute styled with the clothes you sew!

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