I posed a question on my Facebook page, asking which challenges face stitchers. A few have responded, and believe it or not, I have the same challenges. The challenge I’ll address today is “finding time to stitch”.
Stitchers tell me it must be nice to sit at home all day and stitch, because I’m a designer. Yes, that would be nice! But designers find that their time is taken up with the business details of their small business – bookkeeping, advertising, bills, making ends meet. And most of us are also members of a family, so we have family duties as well – cooking, laundry, errands, meeting the needs of spouse and children. Our time to stitch is as limited as everyone else’s!
When I began stitching, decades ago, I had two relatively young children (one was preschool age). Most of my stitching time came in the evenings, after the dinner dishes were done and daily duties attended. My children remember me announcing after dinner, “It’s stitching time!” And it was. I took 1 or 2 hours in the evening, watching television with my husband, to stitch. I was able to get quite a bit accomplished in that time.
I learned some things about making time to stitch that may work for those who are having trouble finding time to stitch:
- Keep your stitching supplies, or your current project, in one place, so it’s always ready to go. If you like to have more than one project going at a time, have a large project you stitch at home, and a smaller project you can take with you. Keep needles, scissors, laying tools, etc., with both projects, so your smaller project is always ready to slip into your purse or a bag. I have a specific place to stitch at home, with my stitching frame and tools set up, and a “to-go” project at the ready.
- Waiting times are stitching times. Doctor’s appointments, sports practices, or other times when you know you’ll be waiting, are perfect times to take a few stitches. Your “to-go” project should be something that doesn’t require heavy concentration, that you can pick up and put down quickly. I remember stitching by the dome light in my car when soccer practice ran a little long, so a lower count project may be in order! Added bonus – stitching in public always generates interest!
- Set your expectations lower. If you can stitch for an hour, great! If you can stitch for 10 minutes, great! Don’t forgo your stitching time if you can’t set aside a 2 or 3 hour block of time. You’d be amazed at how much you can accomplish in several 10 minute sessions. If you only stitch when you can stitch for an hour or two at a time, you’re passing up other good stitching times. If your projects are ready to go (see point 1), you can stitch during those 10 minute sessions. Also, a project that has well-defined areas, like Twinkling Gems or Fun Stuff or Hot Stuff, gives you a feeling of accomplishment with a shorter stitching session.
Time is a luxury sometimes, but we all have the same 24 hours in a day. I choose to spend at least a few of those minutes with a needle in my hand. “My day is not complete until thread and needle meet.” I don’t know who said that, but in my case it’s true!
What time-saving and time-finding tips could you share?