Weekend Project Ideas
May 25, 2016 6:07 AM   Subscribe

I have 3 days on my own this weekend – what projects can I get stuck into that will take about that long?

It’s a bank holiday weekend here, and my plans fell through, but my boyfriend is off to see friends. This means I have a whole chunk of time to myself, and I’d like to do something productive with it. In particular, I’d like something that I can be working on for most of the long weekend, and that will give me a sense of accomplishment at the end. I like crafts, and having something to show at the end would be nice, but I’d also be interested in learning something new.

Restrictions and such:
- I live in a tiny rented flat, so DIY/home improvements aren’t really possible
- I don’t mind buying supplies, but something fairly cheap is better.
- I’m in London, in case there’s anything interesting going on around the city this weekend. I’m always up for exploring.
- I have a sewing machine, but I’m not very good with it. Anyone know of any beginners projects?
posted by Law of Demeter to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (16 answers total) 17 users marked this as a favorite
Make curtains? Here is a tutorial. You can take them with you when you leave.
posted by St. Peepsburg at 6:11 AM on May 25, 2016

Explore London! I'd love to live in London and would explore the heck out of it.

Make a weekend-length athletic goal for yourself (run a mile each day).

Cook yourself an involved and complex recipe and make plans for the leftovers.

Spring cleaning and reorganizing.
posted by slateyness at 6:19 AM on May 25, 2016 [2 favorites]

I love trying recipes and making multiple batches of food that take a long time: like pasta, a bazillion cookies, lasagne, pizza dough, etc.

This past long weekend I spent a couple of hours on Sunday making pizza dough, and now I have the option of delicious homemade pizza whenever I want in the next 2 weeks (longer if I freeze the dough - but it never lasts that long).
posted by Dressed to Kill at 6:33 AM on May 25, 2016

I'd trawl Pinterest or Home Decorating sites for ideas, then I'd take the dough I would have spent on my weekend plans to tart up my joint.

I'd also see some shows, must be some good half-price tickets to something. Enter ticket lotteries.

Maybe I'd clean out my wardrobe and see what kind of capsule wardrobe I could put together. Then I'd hit the sales to fill in any blanks.

I'd cook up some things for my freezer, for those nights when I just can't deal with cooking.

I might tackle making a skirt, Simplicity has great beginners patterns. I'd love this one for summer weekends. It would be totes cute in a bandana fabric!

Cleaning, shopping and making nice food to eat. Sounds like a winner to me!
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 6:39 AM on May 25, 2016

Geared toward a single night, but maybe you could get some ideas from my older question?
posted by functionequalsform at 6:47 AM on May 25, 2016 [1 favorite]

Learn to touch-type if you don't know it already. If you do an office job it'll be one of the most useful skills you'll ever have acquired.

When I did this I used Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing. There are games to help you practice which will keep you entertained.

Even if you don't finish the entire course in the time you have, you can get a huge head start if you devote three whole days to this.
posted by Dragonness at 6:57 AM on May 25, 2016 [1 favorite]

Do you have a balcony or a patch of yard? Plant some pretty green things or edible things in containers. Apartment Therapy has some good small balcony planting inspiration.
posted by matildaben at 7:06 AM on May 25, 2016 [1 favorite]

I had a free weekend once and I decided I was going to learn how to make bread. I think I made about five loaves, each a it better than the previous one, but even the first one was edible and delicious.

Now I know how to make bread.

Learn to make bread.

This strategy can also be applied to cheesecake.
posted by bondcliff at 7:12 AM on May 25, 2016 [12 favorites]

Since you have a sewing machine, you could make a lap-sized quilt out of five inch squares and tie it with yarn. Especially easy if you can find a stack of precut fabric at a fabric or craft store. Otherwise quilters tend to use a rotary cutter a thick clear ruler and a special mat for cutting and all of those are somewhat costly.
posted by puddledork at 7:22 AM on May 25, 2016

There are lots of easy bag tutorials on the web or patterns in stores, Usually they don't take much fabric. But they won't really fill a long weekend. (Random tote bag; reusable shopping bag; Ikat's Make a Bag series; BagnTell (the Weekend Designer) tends to be more complex. Craftsy has some free patterns-log in required.)

You could make a circle or flared skirt and put some sashiko embroidery on it or quilt it, if either is your style.

By Hand London explains circle skirt math; Burda Style explains it;; here is a wrap skirt variation.
posted by crush-onastick at 7:48 AM on May 25, 2016

Personally I would do a spring cleaning - really deep clean my living space, organize my belongings and wardrobe, and get rid of all that shit I don't need.
posted by bq at 10:24 AM on May 25, 2016 [5 favorites]

Mass produce some handmade crafts, to be reserved for gift-giving.

I am a relative novice seamstress, but sewing is great for this - making 5 of a thing at a time doesn't take 5x the time (unlike knitting). And I like to be frugal by upcycling clothing fabric (jeans, t-shirts, patterned shirts, sweaters). I made several of this style of knitting project bag . I plan on making several baby bandana bibs for the multitudes of babies I know. There are also lots of free patterns for hand-sewn felt toys, which even my adult sisters love to have as cute gifts.

There are also other new projects you could try for gifts - candle making or set up some infused booze to steep, for instance.
posted by lizbunny at 12:17 PM on May 25, 2016

Ask Metafilter has taught me to ask myself this question: "what can today me do to help future me?" Start there and you will be golden.
posted by vignettist at 12:17 PM on May 25, 2016 [5 favorites]

Walk the London Thames Path
posted by the agents of KAOS at 12:47 PM on May 25, 2016

A simple summer dress - a 3 day weekend leaves you time to pick a simple pattern, find fabric and actually finish it. Simplicity is great, Colette pattern is also a good resource. Pick an easy one with a video sew along, take your time, and you'll have done something (for you or to give) at the end of weekend !
posted by motdiem2 at 1:53 PM on May 25, 2016

Make some mossariums and give them as gifts. Be sure to keep one for yourself. This is what I'm doing this weekend.

Mefi's own jessamyn has a useful and pretty page. This tutorial she links to has a more step-by-step approach.
posted by tuesdayschild at 7:11 PM on May 25, 2016 [1 favorite]

« Older Is there such a thing as being slow to understand...   |   Hard-Wired Remote-Controlled Under-Cabinet... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.