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Sewing On The Road
Sewing On The Road
It’s been a weird summer. Vacation has turned into staycation, and instead of hopping a plane to visit the beach or see relatives, our “travels” have been courtesy of Zoom.
Not everyone is staying home, though, and some folks have figured out safe ways to mask up and pack up and hit the road. USA Today noted in early July that RV rentals were up 1,600% since April! In July and August, the number of visitors to national parks surged and campgrounds filled as spending time outside was deemed safer than being indoors.
While a change of scene is invigorating, it doesn’t mean you have to stop sewing. One of the advantages of car trips is that’s there’s room for more than the one suitcase you can carry on an airplane. Here are some of the things to consider when stitching on the road.
Handwork is perfect for car trips. Appliqué and English Paper Piecing (EPP) are small and lightweight and can be tucked away when it’s your turn to drive or set up the tent. The key is to prep before you leave home so that you only bring what you need. The Brimfield Block by Brimfield Awakening is a lovely slow-stitching project. (Don't forget to pack the templates if you'll have cutting to do.)
Having everything cut out ahead of time eliminates the need for excess fabric and cutting supplies. Bags and zippered pouches are perfect for keeping items sorted. Sew up a bunch beforehand and you’ll be ready to go. (I particularly like the Color Block Pouches pattern by Vanessa Christenson of V & Co.)
For EPP, I pop paper pieces and 2.5” fabric squares (Moda candies are perfect) into one pouch—one-inch hexagons are a simple shape and nice size for working on en route— and a second pouch corrals all the finished hexies, ready for stitching together.
I keep a third zippered pouch filled with notions including a small pair of scissors, thimble, Clover clips, straw needles, a needle threader, thread, thread conditioner, and a fabric pen.
Quilt binding is another easy on-the-road project and my shelf holds a “binding box” that’s always packed and ready to go, which is helpful even if I’m just binding in a different room in my house.
It's stocked with straw needles, thread, a pair of snips, and a thimble. It also contains a tiny pin cushion that ensures I don't lose a needle in my car seat. I also bring along my bag of Clover Clips.
A few weeks ago, my husband and I got away for a week at our family cabin by a lake and I packed a quilt to bind.
There isn't any WiFi or television at the lake so I finished. This is Backyard Breeze, made with Zen Chic's Spotted fabrics. (Backyard Breeze is one of my patterns with Pam Ehrhardt for our company, Clark Street Quilts CSQ 105.)
Whether you're staying home, or manage a short trip somewhere, I hope you take some sewing with you.