How Do You Get Your Sew-Jo Back?

Has your enthusiasm for sewing ever left you temporarily? I think this is a perfectly normal phenomenon, but how do you get it back? After working 60 hour weeks to write my new book whilst keeping the rest of my business going for the last 9 months, mine was on the wane.

Although I do a lot of sewing that’s not necessarily just for me, such as making samples for my books and developing new patterns, I still enjoy it. Most sewing I do is enjoyable, I stopped doing the things I don’t enjoy (making wedding outfits for other people and doing alterations) years ago.

So I decided the way out of my sew-jo doldrums was to make something purely just for me using someone else’s pattern, so that I could just wallow in the joy of making the damn thing!

And here’s what I decided to do: big comfy knickers!! (Note for readers outside the UK – I will use the terms knickers and pants interchangeably and I know a lot of you will call what I refer to as trousers, pants. I’m sure we’re still all on the same wavelength though, yes?!)


  1. I wouldn’t have to spend a lot of money on loads of fabric and could even use up some of my leftover jersey fabrics (of which I have rather a lot…)
  2. I needed some new pants and always buy them slightly begrudgingly from M&S, resenting the rubbish fabric and cheap scratchy trims.
  3. The ones I buy never fit 100% as I’d like them too.
  4. It’s a quick project which suits me as I didn’t allow myself much “playtime”.

Here is my first wearable toile:

big knickers

I know, I know, they don’t look all that, but I decided to suck it up and brave some pics of them on, as honestly, they’re the most comfortable pants I have ever donned. So, look away now if the sight of me in my pants is likely to offend…..

scrundlewear boy shorts

Let’s pretend they’re bikini bottoms right? Then it’s not so weird.

I really enjoyed making them, they took maybe an hour tops (as I was fiddling around with different ideas and techniques) and they are super easy. I reckon even a beginner could have a go at these, I made this pair without my overlocker as I was just toiling and trying things out as I went along.

The fabric is a bamboo / lycra jersey from Raystitch and it’s dreamy fabric to use for pants – cool, soft and comfortable to wear next to the skin.

The pattern is the Boy Short pattern from Stitch Upon a Time’s Scrundlewear pattern. Strange name, but don’t let that put you off!! There are 3 different styles of pant in the pattern, numerous finishing methods and 7 sizes.

I have to thank Kerry Green for bringing the pattern into my radar.  She’s made a few of them now and look what she made most recently…..


…a gorgeous PJ set using the Scrundlewear pants and my t-shirt from Beginner’s Guide to Dressmaking. That looks like a match made in comfort heaven to me!

So, back to the original question:

How have you got your sew-jo back? 

I’d love to know and I’m planning to write about this in my Love Sewing column, so I might just feature your story (with permission of course)!

11 responses to “How Do You Get Your Sew-Jo Back?

  1. Pingback: My Top 5 Ethical / Sustainable Fabrics for Home Dressmaking | Wendy Ward

  2. Pingback: How to Get Your Sew-Jo Back | Wendy Ward

  3. Pingback: Sew-jo, Sew-go, Sew-no! Pattydoo Susie Pouch – dr p makes…

  4. To get the sewjo back I make something a small, easy and pretty. Nothing that requires too much thinking and takes less than an hour. Then I give it to a non sewer, non creative friend as a gift. Their amazement at my talent and skills is enough to get that sewjo back.

    I know it seems a bit like cheating but it works a charm!


  5. I had been ‘forbidden’ to sew by my in-laws, for for 3 decades I did very little. The challenge was huge, but gradually I got my skills out of the cupboard, had my machine serviced but a lack of parts meant a new one (!) and lots of challenges. I started by ‘getting to know’ what all the functions were on my new Bernina, teaching myself, using YouTube and going to a few classes. I gradually found things on my machine (sewing knits) and other modern technologies like downloading patterns (thank you Wendy so very much) that inspired me. I started to feel confident and contemporary again. Last summer I wore a much admired top I made to the party the night before my son’s wedding – wow.

    Occasionally I get a bit ‘lost’ but try to have a ‘ladder of projects’ – so something in my minds eye, something major in the planning, (so collecting fabrics or ‘ingredients’) while working on two current projects, one portable and one fixed. This is can be mixed: knitting, crochet or hand quilting but it helps with not losing the sew-jo and prevents that horrible “now I’ve finished that I’ll miss it” feeling. I go to exhibitions, follow some blogs and love my sewing more than ever: absence does make the heart grow fonder.

    Thanks to you too Wendy!


    • So glad you’re back on your sewing horse Deborah! ! Can’t imagine being prevented from sewing by someone. I think your approach of having a few projects on the go including different types of sewing + something portable is a brilliant one and one I try (sometimes in vain) to do. Thanks for sharing 😊


  6. Julie Brewster

    I sew on the dining table so any time we have people coming for a meal I have to clear away, I always rush to finish what I am making before I clear the table. Every time I do this I find that I have no interest at all in getting my things back out, not just the actual task of bringing them back down the stairs but also a total lack of enthusiasm for making anything to the point where I think I will never sew anything again. After a few evenings of being lazy in front of the tv I think I must make myself start another project and with a massive amount of willpower I bring my kit back down and cut something out. The moment I see the cut pieces on the table I am totally engrossed in sewing again and plan my next few projects with enthusiasm. I guess the answer is don’t invite people for dinner thus never having to clear up in the first place!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.