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Deadlines and stuff

2011 February 2
by elizabeth_admin

Did you miss me?  I’ve surely missed my mojo which has shown neither hide nor hair this past week.  But I have a deadline and deadlines, I’ve just decided, are my new best friends.  This Friday, I’m meeting up with some sewing friends to see the Balenciaga exhibit in NYC. 

Balenciaga "Infanta" evening dress, 1939 Copyright, R.J. Horst - Courtesy Staley/Wise Gallery, NYC.

I would love to wear my S2337 dress that evening.  It’s been languishing on my sewing table (aka the dining room table) all by its lonesome.  I’ve got most of the fit issues worked out.  I think I will lengthen the bottom pleat or two of the tummy region as I mentioned in my last post about the dress and then finish up the dress.  This is an unlined pattern, so I will have to wear a slip underneath if I’m going to wear tights with it.  I have two more evenings to work on the dress, so I think I can finish it in time.  *fingers crossed*

But this dress and the mysterious disappearance of my sewing mojo has got me thinking about my modus operandi.  Do I need a deadline to propel me forward or to motivate me to sew?  Is the joy of wearing something I’ve made no longer motivation enough that I have to add the pressure of a deadline to keep me moving forward?  Sewing is my love, what I long to do all day long, and what I think about all day long.  Why, when I get home after work, do I find my mojo flagging when, just an hour earlier, I could hardly wait to get home to sew? 

Last night, in order to jumpstart my mojo, I shortened a pair of RTW pants I bought last week.  Just a bit of hand sewing, but I loved every minute of it.  And I loved not paying $12 to do such a simple thing.  Maybe it’s just a matter of sitting down to start sewing and then I’ll get in the mood.  Maybe I should reinstate the 30 minutes a day routine…  It seemed to help me last time I did it.  I know most people usually use the 30 minutes a day because they’re busy and can’t seem to fit sewing into their day, not because they’re lazythey’ve lost their mojo.  It will certainly help me to have this Friday as my deadline to wear the dress.  I know when I get home tonight that I will skip the glass of wine and go straight to sewing.  If I’m smart, I will also put music on instead of the tv too. 

image from

So, what do you think about deadlines?  Are they helpful or a hindrance to your sewing?  Do you need them to keep you on track?  Or do you find them negating the joy of creative process?

11 Responses leave one →
  1. February 2, 2011

    I’m not a big fan of deadlines. I rarely give myself deadlines. When I have a deadline, my focus is more on the finished product and not on the process and I don’t enjoy it as much.

    The 30 minutes a day routine does kick start my mojo when it’s sluggish. Mostly, I let my mojo come back on it’s own terms. Usually, I’m really motivated and hungry to sew by the time it gets back.

  2. February 2, 2011

    Have a look here.. Seems like you’re both on the same waveline today.

    I’m often a procrastinator so deadlines do get my butt in gear.

    • February 2, 2011

      I’m with Debbie. Without deadlines, I’d rarely finish anything! I’m good at planning and starting, but somewhere near the finish line, I peter out. I’m workin’ on that.

      I’m part of the 30 minutes a day club, too. Just have to avoid the siren song of the stupid TV.

      February is UFO month for me. I’ve got the Sewing and Stitchery Expo in Puyallup, WA the first Friday in March, and I know it’s going to inspire me to create! It always does.

      I’d be surprised if you didn’t come back from the Balenciaga exhibit with a new, fresh perspective. Take/post pix if you can!

  3. February 2, 2011

    Deadlines. I’m of the Douglas Adams persuasion unfortunately. 30 minutes a day speaks to me loud and clear, and it’s the route I’d preferably take were I searching for my mojo. Which I am, only not yet.

    The exhibition looks great. Am I the only one who looked at that dress and thought ‘teeny waist!’?

  4. February 2, 2011

    That’s exactly how I feel. maybe I’ll do the 30 min. a day thing too?? and skip that glass of wine!

  5. February 2, 2011

    I love a good deadline. Sometimes it’s the only thing that gets me off my behind and in front of the machine or the needles. With a glass of wine!

  6. February 2, 2011

    Deadlines are my friend. Well, unless it’s the night before the morning I want to wear the dress I haven’t yet cut out. That deadline was my friend when I was 20.

  7. February 2, 2011

    Oh, dear. Right now sewing is still how I dodge all my other deadlines, so it hasn’t been a problem… Yet. I’m having a dreadful time keeping up with my self-imposed deadlines in other areas right now, though… Good luck!

  8. February 3, 2011

    Cool how we posted on the same issue at the same day! Apparently, deadlines are what works for me. I’d love to be more of a 30-minutes-a-day-girl, but my afternoons are never the same, and it’s impossible to fit in 30 minutes every day. My next challenge is to keep my flat as tidy as possible on a general basis, and that way have more spare time for sewing.

  9. February 3, 2011

    I suffer from the same thing. Can’t wait to get home to sew…and then when I get home manage to spend all night on the computer. When I actually do motivate myself into the sewing room I enjoy it. But the motivation is hard to find!

  10. Marie-Christine permalink
    February 4, 2011

    Deadlines can be good in order to get something specific accomplished. Especially if you can make that a pleasant deadline, like wearing something to meet your sewing friends who you know will appreciate the result and tell you so :-). But to me deadlines are counter-productive in the long run. When I’m done stressing myself out over a deadline, it can take me a good while to get back into the groove of the activity I formerly enjoyed. Do this enough and I risk stopping altogether.

    The 30mn a day is probably the exact equivalent in terms of final productivity. But it’s much less stressful to transform something into a routine (nobody stresses out over brushing their teeth [hopefully]). And it’s something you enjoy anyway, so a good half hour can spur you on to start more eagerly the next day, or if you have time you can let it slide into a longer session when the opportunity arises and things are going well. It doesn’t work so well for me because my life isn’t so regular, if only because of work, and making time every day would just add stress to stressful times, but that’s me.

    The bottom line: if you know the 30mn a day works for you, better aim for that than flog yourself over your mojo.. Flogging yourself always leads to a diminished enjoyment, and that usually leads to lowered productivity in the long term.

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