Design Process & Using Your Time Wisely

As it’s still near the beginning of the year and I like making February a clean slate. January for me feels like a month of rest. I use February to start afresh! I thought I would talk about something that you may want to add to your habits.

I notice people (including myself) say ‘I don’t have time’ or ‘I don’t know what to do next’. You can help yourselves by putting systems into place.

For someone that says ‘I don’t have time’. I’ve been trying to do something every day for at least 10 minutes towards my design. There is a lot of time working on your sample. The time I’m working on my sample is after dinner when I’m sat down digesting my food, I work on my sample. Some nights it will only be 20 minutes, some nights it will be more. Every row knit is closer to me completing it. Can you find 10 minutes during the day to work on your writing? You don’t have to write much, focus on one section of the pattern, or focus on getting some marketing together. It can be hard if you’re someone like me who needs the first 10 minutes to procrastinate before you can get settled. If that’s all the time you have then you have to make the most of it. I can’t make suggestions of when a good time for you to work is as we all have different lives. You may find getting up a bit earlier means you can get that much-needed time. Or you have to make some time in the evening when everyone’s gone to bed. What ever works for you.

Now for the people that say ‘I don’t know what to do next’. You are the easiest people to deal with. You need a system. The first thing you need to do, is list everything that happens for you to launch a pattern. Now some people, can have this information in their head and remember it all. To be honest, if you don’t know what to do next you aren’t one of these people. Also, I don’t believe that many people are actually those people. Why do you want to keep this information in your head instead of something else? Everyone will then have their own method, some will use pen and people, others it will be digital. This is about knowing yourself. I use digital as I tend to lose things including notebooks so having it written down wouldn’t be that useful for me. With pen and paper you can do this in various ways. You can have a master list that you go back and forth with during your design, or you write it out fully for every design.

So, how I do it with the digital method is to use a program called Notion. There are many apps, programs you can use so go and search for the one that suits you the best. I like Notion as I can create templates. The reason I like templates is the majority of the tasks will be the same for every single design. When I start a new design I can add the template to the page and all the information is already there that I will need. The other nice thing with Notion is I can convert it into a PDF so if I need to I can print it off. Here’s my current version with my latest design, and it’s easy to update when I need to add something.

A screen shot of details of template that involve all the steps that I need to consider during the design process.
A screen shot of the steps I take from start to end of the design process

Another reason why I like Notion is I can make each task into a page. For example, in pattern writing, I have a template of what information I need for my pattern. It includes every section that I would need to write the pattern. I don’t write my pattern in Notion, but I like having this information there as I have it on my phone, as well as my computer. If I’m out and about and have a sudden idea for a pattern romance, I can type it up in that section on my phone. I then don’t have to not worry about forgetting it when I’m able to get to the computer.

If you want to chat or speak to me more about how I do it. Feel free to send me a message about it.

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