Today I’m talking about 21 Days to Stitching Everyday, a gentle sewing challenge to kick off 2021.
I don’t know about you but I’ve noticed a trend for a long time on social media. I hate it.
There’s a quiet peace about the hum of the sewing machine or stitching on a few buttons. In uncertain times, giving your hands something to do can bring a lot of calm and a sense of purpose.
But… (ranty pants on!)
I feel like sewing these days is presented as an all or nothing hobby. Scroll through Instagram, and it would seem like you’re either cranking out project after project or doing nothing. I’ve definitely felt forlorn over seeing people’s feeds with garment after garment posted practically every day. Why is it that I always seem to see these pictures on a day when I haven’t been able to touch my machine for maybe weeks?
And I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen people say on social media that they feel guilty for having no sew jo.
I flipping hate this. Sewing is not a habit that you need to approach like a Netflix binge. Don’t get me wrong. Those days where you do nothing but sew are nice.
That being said, if you think that should be the rule, you’re setting yourself up for cycles of crazy sewing followed by burnout. After the burnout, brace for major sewing lack of motivation that may take months to recover from. You know that if you have kids or you work, it can be difficult to carve out time to sew regularly. That pressure to make make make can be crushing.
Sometimes small tasks built up over time will do way more than you’d think. Sewing with a sustainable-for-life, faithful discipline of picking 1 thing to work on in a day will not only help you reach your sewing goals, it also won’t lead to creative burnout. No more scrolling through Instagram feeling blue about how you haven’t made anything in a hot minute.
So with that in mind, January 7-27th, 2021, I’m going to be hosting:
21 Days to Stitching Everyday: a gentle sewing challenge.
The idea behind this is to
do one small, quick thing in your sewing space that’ll set you up for a daily sewing habit.
The time to complete everything will range from 2-30 minutes. I’m splitting up these tasks into 3 weeks:
Week 1 (Jan 7-13): Spiff up your sewing space
A creative space is one that’s organized, but boy howdy it’s easy for sewing supplies to get out of hand. Every day this week, you’ll have a simple task to complete. Each task will help you transform your sewing space into a practical, usable place. You’ll be able to find everything you need in a second without spending big bucks.
Week 2 (Jan 14-20): Eat the frog
Mark Twain said,
“If it’s your job to eat a frog, it’s best to do it first thing in the morning. And If it’s your job to eat two frogs, it’s best to eat the biggest one first. “–Mark Twain
Following this idea, this week we’ll conquer some of those sewing tasks that you don’t necessarily think to do but you know they’d be good for you to do. All of these tasks are aimed at helping you clear you brain of sewing clutter. You’ll develop tools, skills and habits in a way that’ll serve you for forever in your sewing.
Week 3 (Jan 21-27): Climbing project mountain
Week 3 you’ll actually break down and finish a real project. I don’t want you to zip through this just so you can get done first. That is not the goal!
My hope is that you’ll really absorb the process here of breaking down a sewing project into bite sized chunks you can get done in a few minutes each day. Learning this process is how you make time for sewing even on the days when you’ve been reduced to tears by having to play tech support all day for your kids’ schooling. And let’s be honest—you need a little me time on those days and sewing is better for you than a bottle of wine!
3 ways to participate in 21 Days to Stitching Everyday:
1. Join the Elizabeth Made This Creative Sewists FB group: I’ll be giving you the tasks daily inside the group, and I’ll be encouraging you to post your progress through the challenge.
2. Post the challenge graphic on your own social media letting your friends know you’re in (check it out below).
3. If you’re not already signed up for the Elizabeth Made This newsletter, sign up below. If you choose to participate, I’ll be sending you some materials for each week so you can follow along.
FAQs about 21 Days to Stitching Everyday
- Does this cost anything? Nope! This challenge is free!
- Do I need to be on Facebook to participate? No. Everything you need you’ll get via email, so if social media isn’t your thing, no problem.
- Can I complete this in my own time?: You bet. What I don’t want anyone to do is Tazmanian devil their way through this to get done first.
This is not a race! The goal of this challenge is to help you create a sustainable for life habit of working on your sewing a little bit everyday. If you want to binge sew, this is not a challenge for you.
If that sounds good for you, join me.
Little by little, this challenge is going to help build up some good solid habits that’ll help you stitch through anything from a simple bag to a gigantor tailored jacket.
You don’t need to burn out you brain on sewing. Join me instead for 21 Days to Stitching Everyday!
Wanna get ready for the challenge? Check out these posts:
Sew jo is not constant, but you can grow it with these tips
Must read ideas to make your sewing space a place you want to be
The only wrong sewing plan is no plan. Here’s how to make one.
Elizabeth Farr is the writer behind the Elizabeth Made This blog where she shares helpful sewing tips, step by step sewing tutorials and videos to help you explore your creativity through sewing. She has written sewing Eguides and patterns, been a featured teacher at Rebecca Page’s Sewing Summit and Jennifer Maker’s Holiday Maker Fest and her work has appeared in Seamwork and Altered Couture magazines. She also created a line of refashioned garments for SEWN Denver. When her sewing machine isn’t humming, she’s playing and teaching violin, and hanging around a good strategic board game with her husband and 4 kids.
2 thoughts on “21 Days to Stitching Everyday, a gentle sewing challenge”
This sounds like a good idea to me and maybe it will help me get enthusiastic about my hobby/passion of some 60+ years. Last January I had to say Goodbye to my “Best Pal” of 74 years (in addition, his mother, Helen, my other mom, passed the day before). Jerry and I were in touch all those years, especially as we got older. Last December I made him a lovely dress shirt using Islander Sewing Systems Men’s Shirt Maker Express pattern. As a yearly obligation, I made two more shirts using the same pattern and to give to a recipient who loves his shirts made of non-traditional fabrics. Except for about 30 masks, about 10 given to the staff at my optometrist, I’ve not sewn a thing since. I read about sewing every day, going through my library of sewing books.
So sorry to hear about such a great loss. What a wonderful friendship, and I’m sure he so enjoyed your beautiful work. Yes, by all means jump into the challenge. You are so welcome!