This morning, as I do on many mornings, I glanced into my still dark sewing room as I headed down the hall to leave for work. In the darkness I could see the ironing board and sewing machines, plus all the clutter. It seemed to call me to "come, come spend the day in here". I imagined doing a few chores and then heading in there for a day, and maybe an evening too, of sewing. One can always dream, right?
I have many projects stacked up, all in various states of progress. I've realized that the key to accomplishment is in focusing on one project at a time. And, not starting anything else until I finish at least a few of the WIPs (works in progress). How did I come to this realization?
Last year at the Quilt Festival I took a class from Libby Lehman. She is a wonderful teacher, as well as an internationally known quilter. In the class she told us that she works on one project at a time so the creative voices can speak to her. Her website, http://www.libbylehman.us/index.html, states this in more detail:
|This is the project we did with Libby; this was the example she made to show us. Her stitching and interpretation of the iris was stunning! I got about half way through with mine so it is in the WIP stack!|
Excellent advice. Another influence in my realization came from a comment that a co-worker made to me 35 years ago. I was young, working in my first job. My supervisor was older, she already had school age children. We both liked to do crewel embroidery and I was complaining that I had a project that I just could not seem to get going on. I really wanted to make the pictures but I was having a hard time spending much time on them and seemed to loose interest after I stitched for a while. She gave me advice I've never forgotten: "Just try working on the project 30 minutes a day. You'll be surprised after a week or two with how much you've accomplished." I tried this and it was true! I soon had made enough progress that I felt satisfied with the project and motivated to finish it.
I also read a statement on a quilter's blog that she tries to sew at least 10 minutes a day. Ten minutes is a little short for me. For one thing, I have to dust off the cat hair from the machine and work space and de-clutter the work surface and that takes up the ten minutes! But the thought is still there:
Focus on one project, start to finish
Work a few minutes a day on the project
Let the inner, creative voices speak to you while you work
Enjoy your work time and be thankful