If you haven’t heard of slow stitching yet, you’re going to learn more about it. For the past few years, slow stitching has been quietly gaining a cult following.
What is slow stitching, and how does it differ from regular stitching? SLOW stitching, like the slow eating movement, urges sewists to forget about the completed product and focus on the process. Instead, it promotes the concept of stitching for the sake of stitching.
Slow stitching is a brand-new art form rooted in centuries of craft. In the beginning, Mark Lipinksi, a well-known figure in the quilting community, drove the campaign.
Slow stitching is a craft that combines contemporary innovation with ancient techniques; it’s a craft that emphasizes the process over the product. Making clothes from a pattern or doing repairs aren’t the only purposes of slow sewing. It’s not about working toward a certain objective or a specific deadline.
As with painting, the needle and thread are used like a paintbrush in slow stitching. It’s all about the process of making art, not the finished product.
Slow stitching is all about taking a breather from the frantic pace of our modern society. Appreciating the present moment, taking a few deep breaths, and letting go are all part of it. To put it another way, it’s all about being present.
What is Mindful Stitching?
If you haven’t heard about mindfulness in the last few years, you’re not alone. The ability to be totally aware in the present moment is called mindfulness. It’s important to be fully cognizant of our surroundings and what we’re doing at all times. It’s about keeping an open mind to our feelings, thoughts, and surroundings without judging or imposing our own values on them.
When we find ourselves lost in a sea of what-ifs and what-would-have-beens, mindfulness serves as a life preserver, pulling us back to the present moment.
Mindfulness can be practiced in 101 different ways. Sipping herbal tea while meditating is one way to practice mindfulness for some people. For others, it’s about taking a stroll and savoring the beauty of nature. Sewing is a hobby for some, while others are interested in photography.
You’re not the only one in this last category. Mindful stitching is becoming more and more popular as more and more people recognize the benefits of creating for the purpose of creating.
Stitching mindfully does not necessitate a perfect result. It makes no difference if you can’t sit still for more than a few minutes at a time. Even if your stitching isn’t perfect, it won’t affect your final product.
A primary goal of mindful stitching is to enjoy the process of producing as much as the finished product. It doesn’t matter how the end product looks. It’s okay if the edges are raw. It doesn’t matter if a few stitches are out of place.
Stitching mindfully is letting your imagination run wild and following it wherever it takes you. Stitching mindfully allows you to focus on the sentiments you’re experiencing right now and express them via your needle and thread.
Don’t worry about crossing things off your to-do list or adhering to a strict routine. You can do both, but this isn’t the time or place.
How to Do Slow Stitching
Slow stitching is one of the best things about it because it doesn’t come with a guidebook. There are no norms or standards to slow stitching. It’s all about following your gut and letting your creative juices flow.
Slow stitching isn’t something that can be done in a specific way. You’re ready to go after you grasp the concept. That’s what makes it so enjoyable. Aside from that, and a few more things
You Don’t Need Expensive Supplies
Sewing and quilting equipment aren’t cheap if you’re a crafty person. When purchasing high-quality goods, the cost of cloth can quickly escalate.
Buying quilting fabric can be prohibitively expensive for some individuals. Slow stitching, on the other hand, brings quilting back to its roots. It’s not a matter of purchasing a new piece of cloth. What matters is how you use what you already own. Use it if you can sew with it.
You Don’t Need to Plan
When making a quilt the traditional method, you must meticulously plan each step. In most cases, you’ll be using a specific motif or theme in order to achieve a specific goal.
Slow-stitching eliminates all of this. By all means, pick a motif if you want to focus your attention. However, you are under no obligation to do so. Your final output will frequently be a surprise to you as well as others. It may be a collage, a piece of embroidery, or something else entirely. It doesn’t matter what it is. How you got there is more important than where you are now.
Perfection Isn’t The Goal
As a creative person, you strive for perfection while you’re working on anything new. That’s a normal response. However, criticizing your own work and holding yourself to a high standard isn’t necessarily good for your well-being.
When you’re stitching slowly, you can turn off your inner critic. You don’t have an end objective in mind. It doesn’t matter what you come up with in the end. As long as you’re having fun while creating, you’ve succeeded in your goal.
You Can do it Anywhere
A sewing class is a lot of fun. But they take a lot of time. Before class, you’ll need to gather all of your materials and put them away afterward… It’s a lot of work.
Slow stitching does not necessitate nearly as much effort as does fast sewing. If you have something to sew with and something to sew on, it doesn’t matter where or when you are; you’re ready to go at any time and any place.
How to Begin Slow Stitching
Embroidering slowly is a natural process. It’s impossible to say what you should or shouldn’t do. You may not know where to begin, but here are a few suggestions.
Step 1: Gather Your Materials
You don’t need to go to the fabric store to begin slow stitching. All you need for a simple project is a foundation fabric like quilt batting or cotton muslin, and a few scraps of fabric from your stash. Stocking up on the following essentials may be a good idea if your inventory is looking low:
Slow stitching is all about breaking with tradition, but you’ll still need the essentials like embroidery thread.
With slow stitching, there are no hard and fast rules concerning which threads should be used for which purpose. ‘ In light of the foregoing, it’s advisable to stock up on a selection of colored skeins.
Foundation Fabric – All you need to get started is a pack of cotton quilt or muslin.
Clothing – The first place to look for fabric scraps if you don’t already have any from previous projects is your closet. Consider repurposing worn-out garments for use as scrap metal if you have any lying around. Otherwise, you can find low-cost fabric bundles on Etsy or at your local fabric store.
Step 2: Consider Your Surroundings
It’s possible to stitch slowly just about everywhere. That’s one of the things that makes it so enjoyable. The best way to get the most out of the experience is to spend some time deciding on the perfect setting.
You’ll have an easier time entering a meditative state of mind if the environment is well-lit, cozy, and devoid of any outside influences. Consider putting on some soft music, lighting some candles, or even lighting some essential oils to create a calming atmosphere.
As long as you’re comfortable enough to concentrate on sewing, you don’t need to worry about anything else.
Step 3: Start Stitching
Stitching can begin once you’re comfy and relaxed. When it comes to slow stitching, you don’t have to adhere to a predetermined design or set of guidelines. There is no right or wrong way to do things.
However, most people begin by cutting out their materials to make sure they are the right size for the backing. That’s all that’s left to do before you begin stitching. Running or straight stitches are good choices if you want to keep it simple. If it doesn’t work, you have the option of experimenting with more complex methods.
Keep your attention on the stitches you’re making, rather than on the finished product. Instead of stressing about how neat the final product will seem, take time to appreciate the creative process.
Step 4: Admire Your Creation
You have complete control over how and when you complete your job. Ribbons, buttons, jewelry pieces, pins, or charms can be added as embellishments once the stitching needle is put away. You don’t need to worry about any of this; just go with the flow and add as much or as little as you please.
After you’ve completed your masterpiece, take a moment to admire it.
Slow Stitching Techniques and Tutorials
Even though slow stitching is based on centuries-old traditions, it doesn’t imply you have to fully ignore modern technology. The internet is a great resource for brushing up on old abilities or discovering whole new ones. Make use of the following helpful guides, based on your specific needs:
- Incorporating Slow Sewing into Your Day: A Tutorial on Mindful Stitching (petalplum.com.au)
- This article will show you how to choose the correct embroidery hoop and how to put it to good use.
- How to Sew a Stitch by Hand: 8 Basic Techniques for Sewing by Hand: sewing.com
- How to Thread a Needle: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zTOdQ2RhrlA
- www.youtube.com/watch?v=4tboUqTV41U Embroidery Basics:
- Reverse cross-stitching: www.anniescatalog.com/cross-stitch/conten.html?content id=43&type id=S
Slow Stitching Projects
Slow stitching is one of the best things about it since you don’t need a certain project in mind to begin. You don’t have to stick to a single medium, either. Knitting, crochet, embroidery, and quilting are just some of the options you have when it comes to crafting.
Going into a task with no end in mind can be intimidating if you’ve spent your entire life following rules and working towards certain goals.
Take a look at some of these fantastic projects for some ideas on how to get started. Each of these projects has a clear end purpose in mind while still allowing you to focus on the fun of creating.
Hand Stitched Buttons – Despite their diminutive size, buttons have a wide range of applications. When buttons are hand-stitched, they may lend a unique dimension of uniqueness and appeal to any item you choose to use them on.
Creating lap quilts is a great way to calm down and enjoy the process of sewing. To begin, all you need is two layers of fabric. Afterwards, you can adorn the garment with any type of embroidery or ornament.
a set of dishtowels To make a kitchen towel, you only need a few common household items. In addition, it’s a great medium for displaying your handiwork. It’s up to you if you want to add extras or keep it as is.
As soon as you have your foundation fabric, you can go wild producing a bag that showcases the embroidery and textiles. Add as many buttons, charms, and other embellishments as you dare to.
Mindful Stitching Workshops
Gathering with others who share your interest in mindful stitching is a terrific way to get inspired and show off your work. You’ll learn how sewing is more than just constructing something by experimenting with different textures, stitches, and colors. In slow stitching seminars, you’ll learn how to meditate on the process of stitching and how to open your mind and your heart to the present.
As an alternative method of learning if you prefer to do it online, here are some wonderful resources to help you get started.
Slow Stitching Books
In recent years, the number of books on slow stitching has increased. The following books are highly recommended if you wish to learn more about the joys of slow stitching.
Claire Wellesley-Smith: Slow Stitch: Mindful and Contemplative Textile Art
“Slow Stitch: Mindful and Contemplative Textile Art” by Claire Wellesley-Smith is an excellent introduction to slow stitching. A textile artist who lives and works in Yorkshire, England, Claire illustrates her projects in the book with beautiful photographs of her own work. Using basic strategies based on centuries-old practices, this guide teaches you how to connect with a new way of working.
Lynn Krawczyk: The Hand-Stitched Surface: Slow Stitching and Mixed-Media Techniques for Fabric and Paper
Slow stitching and mixed-media techniques for fabric and paper are the focus of Lynn Krawczyk’s “The Hand-Stitched Surface: Slow Stitching and Mixed-Media Techniques for Fabric and Paper.” To get the most out of your stitching, this book encourages you to take your time and savor the process of exploring color, blending threads, and coming up with your own patterns by hand.