Plan your summer sew-cation!

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Guest blogger: Elizabeth from Elizabeth Made This

With summer in full swing, it’s time for vacation!  For many of us, that means sewing up some great travel clothes for your adventures.  Why not find some ways to bring your sewing fun along with you this year?  

Here are some ideas to help you plan your summer sew-cation!

  • Pack your machine

If you’ll be traveling my car, consider taking your machine along for the ride.  Pack your machine in a carrying case and nestle it between your luggage for protection.  Load up a project that you have cut at home plus a few basic supplies like a ruler, pins, scissors, chalk, and thread.  Don’t forget your beautiful custom labels to add your own personal stamp to your work!  When you get to your destination, you can get a little sewing time as you unwind from your travels.

Though it might be a little riskier, you can also take your machine with you on a plane.  Remove the needle and pedal to your checked baggage.  Now you won’t lose any parts or incur security problems, and you can take your machine as your carry on.  Double check with your airline so that you don’t risk losing your good machine at a security checkpoint!

  • Go to a sewing retreat

There are many sewing retreats that you can travel to.  From local getaways to quilting cruises, a quick search will reveal a retreat for every kind of sewist and every travel budget.  These retreats are great opportunities to learn from expert teachers in a friendly environment with like-minded creative people.  Many of these retreats will provide you with a machine to use, so you’ll be able to leave your heavy equipment behind.  Learn some new techniques, meet some new friends, and enjoy your time away doing something that you love!

  • Fabric shop on the road

Shopping for fabric while I’m traveling is one of my favorite vacation activities.  Not only can it be a good break in your travel schedule, but your new finds will be a great souvenir that will easily rival any roadside trinket.  Look up fabric stores in the area that you’ll be traveling to and grab an hour or two to go exploring.  Save some space in your suitcase for your finds!

  • Explore hand sewing

If you don’t want to pack up your whole sewing room for your next trip, think about taking a small piece of hand sewing.  Embroidery is not only hot right now, but it’s an embellishment technique you can apply to about anything you make.  As a bonus, you can take embroidery practically anywhere while toting just a pair of scissors, a needle, and thread.  Do you have a UFO pile of skirts or pants that are all done minus the hemming?  Bring along your hemming projects and practice all your couture stitches on the road.  Reverse appliqué is another great technique that is portable and requires few supplies.  Grab a fancy umbrella drink and work on your next Alabama Chanin style project poolside!


  • Daydream

Maybe your motivation for sewing has been lacking lately.  Regain your lost sewjo by using your vacation time to daydream a little.  Bring a journal with you and sketch any design inspiration you come across.  Watch fellow travelers or locals at your destination or take in the colors and shapes of the scenery for ideas to fuel your next design.  When you get home, you’ll be ready to sew up a storm with all your fresh concepts.


  • Look for novel photo opportunities

Use your new surroundings to capture pictures of your beautiful handmade garments.  Photograph that new swimsuit you just stitched up while you’re at the beach, or find a quirky roadside attraction to get a unique backdrop for that new sundress.  You’ll have a lot of fun, and you’ll come back home with great new memories.

About the writer:

Elizabeth Farr writes at the sewing blog Elizabeth Made This. In her world, Spring is forever and her classic feminine creations are always infused with creativity and a love for good construction. You can see her work at or follow along on Facebook and Instagram @elizabethmadethis and on Twitter and Pinterest @emadethis.

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