Sometimes It is so easy to get excited about a new project that we may not have taken the time to make sure that we have everything we need before starting. This can cause frustration, delay of project completion or abandonment of the project altogether.

Using a planning journal is a great way to keep all your project information in one spot and a fun way to look back at past projects. You may choose to have your planner in paper form, digital or a combination of the two (I tend to use both). I have discovered "disk bound systems" and find it to be a perfect way to keep my info together.

Disc bound systems lay flat, can be folded back on themselves, hold the paper all along the edge, contents can be added, rearranged or removed without damaging the book.

Things to include in your journal:

• A picture of your project - This might be a sketch, a purchased pattern, a cutout from a magazine or whatever inspires you.

• List of plans - Who is the project intended for? What is the finished size?

• A time line - When does it need to be completed? Break your project up into obtainable sections. Even just 10 minutes a day will make an impact on completing your project quickly.

• Finishing and design information - What embellishment, embroidery or quilting designs do you plan to use? If you have embroidery software, use this to audition thread colors to match and then print out the template so you have a visual reminder of your idea. Include any notes or ideas you have concerning your project.

• List of needs - fabric, notions, threads, stabilizers etc. Take a picture with your phone of the front and back of your pattern so you have the info with you while you are out shopping.

• Swatches of fabrics and threads - great for matching colors (note the yardage that you have). Having a picture of your fabric will be helpful to pick up additional needs like fabrics and threads.

• Record your progress - Make note of things that worked well or were a challenge. You will be making your own personal reference guide book. Absolutely invaluable!

It is amazing how smoothly projects progress when everything is organized, and a plan is in place. May your next project be organized and an enjoyable process!

Happy Sewing,