With Thanksgiving past and marketing wizards trying to whip up the annual American Christmas shopping frenzy, I realize my plans for making Christmas gifts may have exceeded a realistic level. To assure that I succeed, I rely on my daily habit of stitching every day!
And the most important key to being able to maintain that daily habit is to always leave something ready for my return the next day!! I started this habit many years ago when I was still operating my quilt shop. I discovered that taking a few minutes to set up the next day's work enabled me to come home and no matter how tired I was, it was easy to pick up something and begin to stitch.
The hardest part of staying motivated for me is getting started when I'm tired. If I don't have to think about "what to do", it's so much easier to start. And once I start, the work calms and soothes me. When it's time to stop, it's easy to decide what needs to be done next and lay it out for tomorrow.
I have three sewing areas (what a luxury!) and generally, there is something going on in each of them. I invested in an APQS George quilting machine a year and a half ago. It lives in my office adjacent to the kitchen. I work there in 30 minute spurts to prevent neck and shoulder discomfort. If I'm not working on one of my own pieces, there is usually a charity quilt on the table. My machine quilting skill remains well honed if I quilt regularly so a bit every day is best.
Then there is my studio with my beloved and reliable Bernina 1031 - I've used it so much over the past 25 years that I wore out the feeddogs and had them replaced last year! I never leave without setting up the next phase of the current project. And I never work on a project without something there on the right to use as "leaders and enders" (ala Bonnie Hunter).
And finally there is my little cozy hole in the living room where I do all my hand stitching. It is stocked with everything I might need -- fine scissors, a variety of hand sewing needles, basic threads, pincushions, and thimbles. None of those items are allowed to leave there under any circumstances!! If I'm traveling with hand stitching, there is a separate pouch with another set of those items. Right now, I'm spending most evenings knitting for my family -- sweaters for the grands and socks for everyone who has ever said they "love them" to me.
So if you are under the gun to get too many Christmas gifts made in time, try this approach to keeping yourself motivated. Let me know how it works for you!!
Must go piece!!