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How to Find the Type of Sewing That Fits Your Goals

You might have sewing goals in mind, but it’s easy to get distracted. Here’s what to do.

Posted in: Creativity & Mindset • June 1, 2022

Think about all the distractions you experience in sewing. An indie pattern company releases a new digital pattern that’s perfectly on-trend for the season, and you can download it and start sewing right now. Your favorite fabric store sends an email with new linens that you have to bring into your wardrobe before they sell out. When browsing Instagram, you see a really inspiring pattern hack, and now you want to drop everything you’re doing and make it.

The thing about distractions is that they are fun. They're distracting because you get so excited that you’re willing to drop what you’re doing, abandon any of your larger sewing goals, and follow them. The trick is to harness that fun spirit of improvisation and balance it with some planning.

In episode 92 of the Seamwork Radio podcast, Sarai and Haley share a bunch of ideas to help you uncover your most important sewing goal right now. They also talk about balancing having fun with your sewing while still working towards a larger goal. So if you’re struggling to find a goal, you keep getting distracted, or you are having trouble just getting started, keep reading.

First, what is a sewing goal?

The first step is to identify your current primary sewing goal. Your goal will entirely depend on where you are in your sewing journey at any moment in time.

If you look at some of the goals set by hundreds of other Seamworkers on the Community, they fall into a few categories. (By the way, did you know that you can set and track goals and share them with other Seamworkers? Just visit the Goals page in the Community).

Looking at how other makers set their goals might help you identify a goal.

  • Fitting: Learning how to fit clothes to your body is one of the most common sewing goals. If you need support, we have a fitting class called How to Fit With Confidence, and it includes a free downloadable fitting journal.

  • Wardrobe planning: If you want to build a wardrobe that makes sense for you and your life, set a goal around wardrobe planning. Our Design Your Wardrobe class can help.

  • Making time for more sewing in your life: If you’re a busy person, sometimes setting a goal around making space for sewing is all you need. Try reading these Creative Exercises for When You Only Have 10 Minutes.

  • Learning how to sew: Learning goals are broad and evergreen because you never stop learning. For example, you might be entirely new, and you want to learn the basics, or you might want to learn more about fabric. On the other hand, maybe you’re ready for more skill-based learning, like knits, zippers, or niche sewing, like outerwear or lingerie.

  • Specific, project-based goals: For example, if you’ve identified a hole in your wardrobe, you might make a goal around that.

If you're having a little trouble with that, take our quick, 5-minute sewing quiz. It will help you find just the right patterns and resources that match your goals.

How can you meet your sewing goals?

Once you’ve identified your primary sewing goal at the moment, step two is identifying what success looks like for you. Why is this goal important to you? How will you know when you’ve met your goal? This is a great time to use the goal feature in our Community to sketch out your process.

Step three is creating that formula that works for you to balance achieving your goals and all of the fun, spur-of-the-moment stuff you want to do. For example, maybe 50% of your sewing is focused on working towards your goal, and 50% is open to whatever you feel like sewing at that moment. That's just an example. It could be whatever works for you.

Step four is creating a sewing queue for yourself by identifying projects that will help you reach your goal. If you need a place to start, look for three projects and use them to create your queue.

And the final step five, is to break down your goal into one small micro first step. Getting started can be the hardest part, so creating a tiny goal to kick things off can get things moving. For example, maybe you can set your alarm 15 minutes earlier in the morning three times a week to get some sewing done. Or maybe you can just set out your sewing tools and notions so you can hop into your project the next time you walk by your machine. It doesn't have to be a big step.

Goals can change at any time

Your goals can change at any time, as they are entirely dependent on where you are in your sewing journey at the moment. Even if you’ve set and accomplished many goals in the past, you can still take our sewing quiz and see where you come up at this moment since things often change over time.

Plus, you never know when that brand-new sewing pattern might come out and capture your attention, or a sale might drop at your favorite fabric store, and your plans shift once again.

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