They might be kitschy, overrated, or even a little stressful, but there is still a bunch of creative power in setting resolutions for the new year.
Having intention with your craft keeps you motivated, and something as simple as setting a little resolution at the start of a new year can bring you focus.
The theme of this issue is Resolutions. On Instagram and in the Seamwork Community, we asked you to share some of your sewing resolutions for 2020, and as usual, you responded with thoughtful goals for your creative practice in the new year. So if you are feeling stuck or you need some help setting a resolution, read some ideas below.
Sewing with Intention
A few themes popped up in all of these resolutions, and one of the biggest was intention.
It seems that the sewing community overall has become more intentional—with fabric purchases, the way we communicate with each other, and being open about our struggles and our triumphs.
Here are some inspiring (and intentional) resolutions.
“Plan. Think about gaps in my wardrobe and be more creative with the patterns I own.” @iammeex.sews
“Make fewer things but take more time with each one.” @leahfranqui
“Make more time to sew and select projects with intention!” @tracywaideboer
“My more amorphous goal is to work on moving away from RTW clothing to a me-made wardrobe. I’ve already started moving in that direction, and I really appreciate the ways it has already pushed me to re-think my relationship with my clothing, with shopping, and with sewing. I’m becoming more deliberate and practical in different ways than I was before with my sewing. I’m not ready to swear off RTW entirely, and I don’t think I ever will be, but I am enjoying the sense of freedom and control over my clothing choices that comes from stepping back from the RTW buying churn.” - @angela16541, on the Seamwork Community
“Slow down, plan better and sew with intention.” @stephcarrollsews
“To look at projects in a more structured way. I always end up speed sewing at the last minute.” @nicolekligerman
“Sewing some clothes for my trans daughter. Just the beginning of a new wardrobe.” @aquairey
“To sew only what I need! Which also means what works for my lifestyle and our climate.” @back.to.stitch
"Slow down, plan better and sew with intention."
Framing a resolution around a specific garment is an easy way to stay focused and motivated. If you are struggling to find the time or energy to sew, sometimes you just have to pick a garment and go for it!
If picking just one garment is stressful, take a broader approach. The Make Nine Challenge, which has a strong presence on Instagram, is a great example of framing goals around projects. This awesome approach to sewing was sparked by Rochelle back in 2015 on her blog Lucky Lucille and has only grown over the years.
“I reeeeaaaalllly want to make a pair of pants. Like real pants with a zipper and everything."
“Sew at least one thing a month.” @jade_newzealand
“This year, I am going to dive into jeans making! I even bought a mini anvil from Blackbird Fabrics! I doubt I really needed it, but my partner was not pleased when I practiced hammering rivets on our cast iron skillet...” @sewrcery, on the Seamwork Community
“Make the most amazing button-up shirt ever!” @fabric_swagger
“Sew more cake, less frosting. Wardrobe basics for my real life.” @girlinthevcity
“I reeeeaaaalllly want to make a pair of pants. Like real pants with a zipper and everything.” @jnmccollom
“Make undies!” @elwags
“My wedding dress!” @emily.katie
“Make my first pair of jeans and jacket!” @skeinandthestitch
A New Approach to Textiles
Since fabric is our medium, it makes an approachable framework for goals. Whether it’s stash-busting, only buying sustainable fibers, or getting comfortable with a tricky-to-sew textile, you can totally set resolutions around fabric.
“I bought a lot of fabric this past year. A lot. If there was a sale, I was matching fabric to patterns. So, now I have this huge stash and I have completed exactly zero outfits, and with some of the fabric, I’m trying to remember what exactly I bought it for. So, for 2020, my goal is to tackle that huge fabric stash and complete six projects.” - @kimberly42937, on the Seamwork Community
“Use fabrics I’ve been saving until I’m a better sewer (been sewing 4 years!)” @whatnicolesews
“Sew more neutrals! I desperately need some basics.” @lauramaykes
“Sew with mostly second-hand fabrics and never more items than I truly need!” @ellierivkin
“To stop buying polyester by Jan and move toward more sustainable fabrics by Dec.” @chaparralgirl
“Buying fabrics only when I can clearly picture what it needs to be! No more piles of fabrics!” @boutiquebykang
Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned maker, skill-building never really ends. A simple goal to improve a skill, do some research, or take a class will leave you feeling proud and accomplished in the new year.
“Learn to draft my own patterns!” @strong.fierce.beautiful
“Push through my fear of using my serger and make something!” @megoduncan
“Taking the time to learn to fit pants well.” @sarahrstewart_ne
“Try more advanced sewing patterns, neat seam finishes, and couture techniques.” @sierraburrell
An Different Mindset
Sometimes all you need to stay motivated is a fresh mindset. The resolutions below are an inspiring way to approach your creative practice with a new perspective.
“I want to be Fearless! Stop saving that fabric for ‘when I’m better’ and take some risks.” @moonlightmodiste
“To stop being afraid.” @amy.the.stitching.scientist
“Not to wait on projects because they are special, but to just go ahead and make them.” @christianaopus
“We do have a tradition in our family that always puts me in the right frame of mind. I believe it is an Italian saying that what you do on the first day of the year is what you will do throughout the year. That’s why I always make it a point to sew on New Year’s Day.” @purdygirlpeg, on the Seamwork Community
“Transform thinking about sewing into sewing.” @madebylucille
“If a project fails, don’t quit. Learn.” @mammaknits
“Take chances and accept challenge.” @bauerfan71
“Stop hesitating and DO!” @heather_c14
“Conquer the chronic analysis paralysis!” @anitapullingthread
On a final note, if you really want to set a resolution but you are feeling too much pressure, remember that sometimes simple is best. Take inspiration from @theshedders and “sew more often for fun!”
Tools for Setting a Goal
With your Seamwork membership, we have a few tools that can help you create and maintain your sewing goals. It takes intention, and intention can be hard to maintain, so experiment to find what works best for you!
Our Goal tool on the Community is a great resource. You can set a goal, break down the steps, check them off as you accomplish them, and then mark your goal as complete. From there, you can link your goal to a project or set a new goal. We’ll even send you little reminder emails to make sure you stay on-task (if you want them).
You can also join an upcoming session of Design Your Wardrobe—there’s a new session coming up in February—or take the program at your own pace. We’ll help you design a collection of clothes and create an approachable project queue, so you finish sewing what you planned.
For this next round of Design Your Wardrobe, we have a fun surprise: videos! Stay tuned for more on that next month, but you can read all about DYW here—and let’s get creative together in 2020!