Sewing Circles

on January 27 | in Sewing Trends | by | with 12 Comments

We love to sew, and we know you do too. As much as we treasure sewing in quiet moments, with our thoughts and the hum of the machine, sometimes it’s just nice to sew with friends. We wish every town had a Stitch Cleveland, but if yours is lacking we want to help you find, form or broaden your own Sewing Circle! Visit the forum where you can navigate by region and post about your preferences for a group.

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A sewing bee from Grandma Moses.

Irene has an active Sewing Circle where everyone brings equipment (sewing machines, ironing boards, sergers, etc.) for a full day of fun! She writes, “I absolutely treasure our gatherings and find it so therapeutic to talk to women with similar ideals.” Irene helped brainstorm a list of questions for you to ask/answer as you join or form a Sewing Circle. If you don’t find an immediate connection in the forum you might make some email/blog connections through a Sewing Circle forum post. If you’re lucky, you might even find a fabric-based Mason-Dixon friendship.

Sewing Circle Considerations

Type of Gathering

  • Are you interested in a group for hand sewing only, or would you like to bring your sewing machine? Are you looking for a group where you can bring a variety of hand crafts (knitting, mending, etc.)?
  • What is your ideal group size? Would you like one sewing buddy to work with, or a whole new circle of friends?
  • Schedule: Will you meet once a month? Once a week? Every other week? Irene’s group meets every month, and then she also gets together with one friend for a shorter period of time.
  • What times work best for you? Mornings? Evenings? One weekend day a month?
  • Consider skill levels. Does everyone feel comfortable teaching new skills if necessary, or should people all bring something within their skill level?
  • Would your group benefit from an “Organizer”? Do you want one person to coordinate the schedule/logistics/emails?

Meeting Place

  • Will the group meet in different homes? If you’re using sewing machines, which homes can accommodate all of the notions, machines, cutting tables and sewists?
  • If you’re working on hand sewing and other hand crafts, are you open to meeting in a public space like a coffee shop?
  • Consider childcare scenarios. Should kids stay home, or is the group open to sewing/play time for adults and children?

Meeting Logistics

  • Equipment: Irene writes, “It’s nice to have enough and not too much of things. For example, we always have just one serger, but two ironing stations. We also have one cutting table with two mats and one table without mats for pattern tracing. Each person knows what they need to bring and we’re not overloaded with equipment.”
  • Consider the type of projects. Space is an important issue; quilts might be a challenge but smaller items like bags and clothing usually work well. If you have a short meeting Irene suggests cutting patterns as a good use of time!
  • Organizing and scheduling for food is important if you will sew for an extended period of time. (Irene’s Sewing Circle is an entire day… They find this makes the setting up/hauling effort more worthwhile.)

Once you’ve considered what you want in a Sewing Circle, visit the forum where you can navigate by region and post about your preferences. Be sure to mention the type of gathering you’re looking for in your post.  PLEASE INCLUDE YOUR TOWN/AREA IN THE SUBJECT LINE.

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12 Responses to Sewing Circles

  1. Debra says:

    I would love to be part of a sewing circle. The online blogs are currently my only source for meeting other craft minded people.

  2. Bev Schwedes says:

    I never win anything but if I did I would like Michael Miller fabric as I am always sewing for my grand children. I especially like the print with the elephants on it

  3. Vicki says:

    I have just an informal sew/craft relationship with a few friends that live nearby. We try to get together at least once a month, make a nice pot of tea or pitcher of lemonade (depending on the weather) and whoever hosts makes some snacks, and we just craft and talk. It’s a great way to keep up with friends, and keep up with being creative.

  4. Dorothy says:

    I would love to attend or start a sewing circle. As I am the only person I know who sews, it would be nice to meet others with the same interest. Sewing blogs have been my main source of inspiration, but there is nothing like actually talking to others who have the same interest. I am in Vancouver, Canada.

  5. Wendy says:

    I know this is a long shot, but any body else in Juneau Alaska want to start up a modern quilt group?

  6. ~Helena~ says:

    I would like to find a group to get with and sew. Going to hop over to the forum and check it out.

  7. Autumn says:

    I’d love a little group! So far, like Sarahe4e responds, I use Quilting blogs as my source of inspiration and information. I’m a San Diegan, too, Sara, and would join your Modern Quilt Guild! :)

  8. C. Michele says:

    Wonderful! How did you know? I have been pushing hard to start a sewing circle in my hometown! Just what I needed! Thank you so much!

  9. Sarahe4e says:

    Being somewhat handicaped I am unable to make it to groups for quilters. Therefore I consider Quilting blogs my quilting group. I get so much information from them and sites such as yours. Thank you so much for all the links and informtion you give here on SewmamaSew.

  10. Sandi says:

    I belong to a family and friends group that gets together on the second Saturday every month. My mom, her two sisters and sister-in-law, their aunt, one of my aunt’s daughter’s husband’s mom (yep, seriously!), my friend and I all cram into our basement. We make it work. There are two more potential members, and we’ve come up with a great solution for a sewing table – the Little Gracie frame! We’re going to turn it around so the rails are against the wall, then we can fit two more machines on it. We call the gathering our Stitch & Bitch.

  11. Sandra says:

    Our little quilting bee meets every Thursday evening, save for inclement weather. These are the BEST women! I’ve never heard anyone say other than a positive word of encouragement when presented with someone’s work. They uplift, lend a hand, bring goodies to eat. For the past three years my life has been totally enriched and blessed by these women! And, I’ve a couple of dozen quilts to show for my efforts!

  12. sara says:

    4 girls and I started our own group thru a local quilt shop at a beginning sewing class … and we’ve been going for over 2 years ago. I’m hoping we’ll become the next Modern Quilt Guild for San Diego! None of us are experts by any means but we have interest!

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