Ah summer…filled lazy days and opportunities for adventures. But summer is over (at least in the northern hemisphere) and fall is upon us. For many of us that means diving back into sewing projects after a summer hiatus. I don’t know about you, but after a long break, I often need a quick project to jump start my “sewjo,” if you know what I mean.
If you’re like that also, and need a bit of help to get that sewjo going, here are 4 simple patterns that make great sewjo-boosting projects. And a few extra tips to get that sewjo back.
4 Patterns to Jump Start your SewJo
For me, a sewjo-boosting pattern has a few characteristics: (1) its simple, (2) it’s fast, and (3) it doesn’t require me to tape or cut pattern pieces. Here are four of our favorites:
First up, the Ogden Cami by True Bias. This pattern is a perrenial favorite for a reason! It’s a simple, quick sew, and can easily be sewn up with one yard of fabric (just use a different fabric for the facings!)
Mac and Katie have both sewn this pattern multiple times, and they are in steady rotation yearround. The Ogden is perfect with just about anything during warm weather, and layers perfectly under a cardigan in cool weather. It’s a sewjo boost if there ever was one!
The Gemma Tank from Made by Rae is another great “quick fix” type of project to get the sewing juices flowing. We easily fit the main pieces on one yard of fabric, so it’s another one-yard wonder. Finish the openings with bias tape, as per the instructions, or draft your own full facing (see Katie’s tutorial here) for an even faster finish.
If Gemma isn’t in your pattern stash, any woven tank would be equally good for the sewjo. We have a round up of great woven tanks here.
What’s more basic than a t-shirt? The Panama Tee by Alina Designs was Katie’s winner by a hair when she made and compared four popular t-shirt patterns a while back.
But if the Panama tee isn’t in your stash, check out her round up. There are lots of great t-shirt patterns out there and they are a great palette cleanser.
Last, but certainly not least, the Named Ninni Culottes. You may be surprised to find pants on a list of simple sewing patterns, but the Ninnis are a simple pattern that pack a big punch!
They are a quick and simple sew with a dramatic result. We have both made several pairs of Ninnis and they draw compliments wherever we go. Mac sewed up these tribal print Ninnis this summer, and they were a favorite during our 10×10 challenge. Katie hacked the Ninnis into a jumpsuit, and has also made a few pairs that have not made it to the blog yet! We just love culottes in general, though — if you’re with us on that, check out our Culotte Roundup!
We can never stop at four! In addition to the patterns we’ve highlighted, here are a few others that are great simple sews to get you going again:
- Seamwork Astoria Top — This simple knit is really versatile, has relatively few pages to tape, and goes together fast.
- Blackwood Cardigan — We have all kinds of love for this basic cardigan!
- Dressy Talk Woven Top — This simple woven dolman top goes together in a flash!
- Named Inari Tee — The Inari is a simple woven tee and a wardrobe staple!
- Halifax Hoodie — Fall is upon us, and simple sweatshirt pattern may be just what you need!
Tips to Find Your SewJo
Tip #1: Go for a repeat sew
We always like something new, but sometimes it’s nice to go back to a TNT pattern. It’s already taped and fitted, you know how it goes together, and it’s much more likely you can just whip one out!
Tip #2: Choose something you can finish in one sitting
Okay, this isn’t realistic if you sew in small spurts, but if you’re going to sit down and sew for an hour or two, choose something you can complete in that time. That may be a simple gathered waist skirt, or maybe a t-shirt. We can generally finish a t-shirt in an hour or less and more experienced sewists are likely the same. If you’re new or slower, maybe try sewing up a reusable grocery bag. It’s fast and simple, and can be completed in a short period of time. There’s nothing like the satisfaction of completing a project to get your sewjo back!
Tip #3: Use Fabric that Inspires You
It’s way more fun to sew up fabric you love rather than fabric that you’re just “meh” about. Don’t pull out the cheap $2 fabric from Walmart for this. Find something you love or at least really like (probably a smaller cut) and get that out of your stash and into your closet!