• Dressmakers Mannequin with pins in it and a tape measure
    Sewing

    5 Things to do When you Lose Your Sewjo

    When you lose your Sewjo (or your motivation to sew) it can be really upsetting. This wonderful hobby that once brought you so much joy suddenly leaves you feeling meh. On top of that, you also have to deal with feeling guilty for not wanting to sew, as if you were betraying the sewing gods.

    If you’ve been left disconnected from your sewing projects, or can’t find the motivation to start a project you were once so excited about, don’t worry. We have ALL been there.

    So here are my top tips to make it though this tough time and find your sewjo once again.

    How to Find Your Sewjo

    Pins and needles in a pink pin cushion
    Photo by Lisa Woakes on Unsplash

    1. Stop being so hard on yourself

    First of all we need to tackle all those negative thoughts that come to mind when you think about sewing. Loosing your sewjo can be a vicious cycle where you feel bad for not wanting to do something that once made you happy.

    But if at this moment in time you don’t feel like sewing, give yourself permission NOT to sew. Consciously take a break and don’t beat yourself up for it. Our hobbies shouldn’t be a chore. Take some time away to recharge.

    2. Try and identify the cause

    It is so often the case that the reason we feel so down about our hobbies is due to other circumstances in our life. If you’re really stressed at work or are going through a break up, just getting through the days can be tough. Is it any wonder you don’t feel like doing anything other that sleeping and watching Netflix?

    Again go easy on yourself. Know that this tough time will pass and when you start to feel better in other aspects of your life, creativity will return.

    3.  Get organised

    Use your time off from sewing to organise what you already have. This way you might discover patterns you had forgotten you had bought, or fabric that is perfect for that top you wanted to make.

    They say tidy home, tidy mind. Bringing some clarity to your work space or craft room might make you realise just what you love about your hobby. If you find yourself surrounded by fabric you don’t like, give it away, sell it on eBay, get it out of your life. You don’t want it dragging you down. Rediscover special pieces that mean something to you. If you want to go all KonMari keep only the things that spark joy and treat them with the love they deserve.

    The when your sewjo returns, and it will return, you have a choice of projects that excite you get stuck into

    4. Find artist that inspire you

    Whenever my sewjo leaves me, I find it really helpful to look at other people’s work. Instagram, Pinterest and Youtube are full of amazing people sharing their work with the world and often I find their enthusiasm infectious.

    I love to follow people with different style to me, and even from different crafts. A few of my favourites are Brittany J Jones on Youtube and Gather What Spills on Instagram. Brittany makes really cool, contemporary clothes and is so passionate about sewing. She really inspires me because she is always so fun to watch.

    Gather What Spills is an account dedicated to visible mending. I love the hand stitched repairs and patches they share as well as the natural dyed threads. In fact they inspired me to try visible mending for myself. Check out this post where I rescued my bra.

    Branch out a bit and see what other people out there are making.

    5. Try something new

    This is possibly my best tip for you. If you feel like you’ve taken some time out, want to get back into sewing but don’t know where to start, try something completely different.

    Do you always make baby clothes? Why not try making a bag instead? Never made a quilt? Give it a go. Fed up of sewing? Why not learn how to knit?

    Being a beginner at something is really refreshing as there are no expectations and no pressure. If it doesn’t work out, or you didn’t enjoy it, oh well! You were trying something new. Experiment with new techniques and skills and give yourself permission to just play around. You might discover your sewing takes on a whole different direction.

    And that’s it! I hope this post helps you find your sewjo once again. If you’re looking for inspiration why not follow me on Pinterest? I pin a wide range of things so hopefully you will find something that inspires you.

    All the best,

    Claude x

    Dressmaking dummy
  • How to rescue a damaged bra
    Environment,  Sewing

    Visible Mending – How to Rescue a Bra

    Let’s talk about bras. Bras are a pain. Finding a bra that fits nicely is almost impossible. If you do find a style that fits, it probably looks like it was designed by a disapproving vicar. And then there is the price tag. You might as well take out a mortgage to afford it.

    So when you do find a bra that A) fits like a dream B) looks pretty and makes you feel sexy and C) didn’t cost a small fortune, you better learn to make it last.

  • Knitting,  Sewing,  Style,  Vintage

    2018 Retro Round Up

    As the end of December approaches, as do my university deadlines, I thought I would make a little round up of my sewing year. I usually take time out of the online world during the Christmas period to enjoy time with friends and family, but before I do enjoy this final post of 2018.

  • Sewing,  Vintage

    I Made a … 1930s Inspired Dress

    Time to catch up with Retro Claude. Blogging has taken a back seat to working in the past few weeks. But I thought I would catch you up with all the things I have been making, starting with this 1930s inspired dress.

    I made it to wear to the What Katie Did summer social. If you aren’t familiar with What Katie Did they make excellent vintage reproduction underwear and stockings. Every year, they host a little party to launch their new collection and I was lucky enough to be invited!

  • Knitting,  Vintage

    1940s Joan Crawford Knitted Jumper

    My usual posting, and making, schedule has been interrupted by the arrival of some work. I’ve been working on a local outdoor Shakespeare festival as a wardrobe assistant. So far I’ve mostly been working on Henry V, however this production is set in a WW1 field hospital, making it my 6th WW1 production in 4 years. I’m hoping to update my portfolio with some production shots once they become available but in the mean time enjoy this photo of some of the adorable company I’ve been keeping.

  • Sewing,  Vintage

    1940s Pyjama Playsuit

    When I started this blog I wanted to inspire and motivate myself to make my own clothes and it looks like it has worked! I have been sewing for 10 years and finally, I have made something exclusively for me to wear; a 1940s playsuit.

    I can’t believe it!