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Sewing with kids

blondie2sew | Posted in General Discussion on

Hey Everyone,

This week has been crazy I have been keeping up on my reading however I haven’t been able to post anything until now.

I went to find my Grants for Kids Sewing class and poof it is gone! So I guess I don’t know how that works so thus I am posting a new.

Well Thanks to some great advice I am working on getting my grants slow going this week since I was busy with my girls. My Husband is AF and is now gone for a while so I have been playing single mom since July.

My girls are 5 and 10 and as I said before in other conversations my 10 year old Abigael is liking to sew and has some projects she is working on. We had no school on Thurs/Fri this week so I told Abigael she could have some girlfriends over for a sleepover so am I crazy or what 3 came by to spend Thursday night with us.
I had gotten that Sew Simple mag. the latest one and what caught my eye was that cute Corduroy purse on the front. Well I just had a thought since it was really easy. I asked Abigael if she thought the girls would like to make this when they come over and she said ya that would be fun. Well long story short, I was going to use it as my test to see how I would fair up really teaching the young ones to sew. And I think I passed!! yeah. I am going to sit down and right down things I need to improve and things I did right. Of course this was just a throw them in and sew type deal I didn’t really have a structure. I will go over my critiquing of myself with Abigael. ( I think I neglected her some) The 3 other gals didn’t have any knowledge what so ever and they picked out material, they pinned they cut they sewed. They seam ripped, they forgot to put the presser foot down often and had the wonderful nest underneath, had a broken needle. Wow and all this time I wasn’t stressed my blood pressure didn’t soar and I was laughing and calming and encouraging them. I ironed seams and such with what they did. I should’ve took pictures on the cutting!! This was all except for Abigaels first time sewing and they really did a great job they were excited to do this and wanted to finish it and thought they were really cool sporting their new purses!!

So needless to say I believe I passed and now I am more excited to keep going and getting my funding and knocking on the doors I need to and get this venture and vision a reality!!

So I know I just wrote a novel and I left out all the fun details but I know all of you can see the humor the laughter the fun we had!! And the great sense of accomplishment both with the girls and myself we had on that sleepover!!

Thanks all for letting me share


  1. Ralphetta | | #1

    I do some substitute teaching and when I am in the middle school sometimes the kids are carrying their projects that they completed in sewing and I get to see them.  The boys are just as excited about the pillows they made, as the girls are.  There doesn't seem to be the stigma there used to be. So, don't forget the boys when you are planning.  They make wild floral shorts with a drawstring waist and seem to enjoy it.

    1. User avater
      blondie2sew | | #2

      Thank you so much for you insight as well,I am totally hoping boys will want to be involved in my venture!!Do you have any suggestions on how to make it appealing when I advertise this sewing class?To the boys I know I want to make sure that they are welcomed and they think it is cool too!!!Thanks for your inputConnie

      1. Ralphetta | | #3

        Since I've seen some pretty "cool" boys in the classes, I suspect one reason they take it is to get attention from the girls. I don't know how that would help you, though.

        1. User avater
          blondie2sew | | #4

          Too funny,But I know that has a huge truth to that!! Most of the boys my daughters age I know and know their own individual personalities (I have been working in the classroom for all of Abigael's years thus far) So I know I will be able to handle those boys. That's if they want to do this. But the others. Well that could be a challenge. But I think I am up for that challenge. Hey I can just make it a point to tell them they don't want the girls showing them up!! Just a thought.This is actually going to be an after school program so It will be interesting to see who all wants to participate. I am still really in the first stages of getting this up and running so. This might be a next years thing officially.I want to see about getting a group together before hand to kinda get some interest and enthusiasm about this program.. Thus my sleepover venture last week! Thanks,Connie

          1. ctirish | | #5

            Connie, It sounds like you are having fun with the kids sewing. I think it is great to have boys sewing. When I lived in Colorado one youngest daughter was in middle school and both girls and boys had to take, cooking, sewing, wood and metal. It was wonderful, she made a candle holder in metal, a shoeshine box in wood, she loves to cook now and in sewing they had a choice of what to make and she made a letter pillow with the letter that started there first name. Then if they liked it they could finish their whole name.

             The choices for sewing were; pillows, skirts, wallets, vests, a bag for their sports balls, a tennis racket cover and a cover for their skis with a little handle for carrying them in airports.  A large percentage of the people who live in Colorado ski or hike, a lot of outdoor activities.  That was 20 years ago, I have no idea what they would be making now. 

             Although I think those are still good choices for beginner sewers. Colorado was pretty progressive in the Home Ec and Industrial Arts curriculum in the olden days.  We were transferred again and when we came to Connecticut she had to fight to take more metal because she wanted to make another candle holder. They were both for me and she did a great job.  jane

          2. User avater
            blondie2sew | | #6

            I remember taking Home EC in JR High as well, I too made pillows, As I recall I made a baseball, bat , and mitt. I can't remember if I made anything else. I do remember the cooking portion. I have lived in WA all my life and not many girls did take the shop classes. I kinda now wish I did. As for now Home Ec and things like this is a thing of the past in schools. A lost art and lost generation that is why I am wanting to make a difference in this area with the kids of now!! I have had so many people say gosh I wish I could sew. or my mom does but I never was given instructions. To be perfectly honest I never thought I would teach others since I sometimes really feel in adequate myself at times.
            I have really had no formal teaching like college course in tailoring and design and such. ( which I would love to take )So that is why I still sometimes think I am a beginner. However lately I am getting my confidence up for myself and saying hey I may be advanced!! After 20 years of me sewing. I find it really fulfilling and relaxing and great excitement for myself every time I sit down at my machine and I am now coming to realize this and I won't say I don't have time any more!! I make time because it is a passion. I want to really get better at clothes construction anywhere from fitting the patterns to altering ready made clothes things like this. I have always been one to make sure when something was made it didn't look like it was home made!! I want that off the rack couture look. That is why I want to teach this generation that they can do this too and wear them and feel confident!! They can design a basic pattern to a custom garmentIt was fun going down memory lane!!! Thanks

          3. MaryinColorado | | #7

            Both of my grandsons like sewing.  Some ideas for the boys:  sometimes cubscouts/boyscouts adopt a family for Christmas, we made a baby blanket of fleece with embroidered teddy bear.  Scarves, mittens, pillows, vests, hats, slippers and throws.  Pot holders/placemats.  They enjoy making gifts for others alot.

          4. User avater
            blondie2sew | | #8

            Thanks!! Wonderful ideas for me!! I am like a sponge and that is a great way to get the boys involved. Just this morning I was thinking of what projects I could have them do!!Gifts that will be great. Jane had mentioned like sports equip bags and covers and such!! I was even thinking of a project like sleeping bags and stuff like thatThanks again for your ideas and taking your time to give me ideasConnie

          5. MaryinColorado | | #9

            Your Welcome!  Sounds like you are on your way to a fun and hopefully lucrative adventure! 

            A couple more ideas are: quillos which are small quilts that fit into attatched pillows, great for kids, slumber parties, and travel.

            Also stuffed animals are fun to do.  I think the easiest and cuddly cute ones I have done were from Carol's Zoo or Carole's Zoo.  The grandkids loved them.

            Also a nice gift is to buy a book and make a stuffed animal to go with it.  I did several of these.  I think one of the books was a Serendipity book about seals and I made stuffed seals for each child.

            Simple shapes like stars and hearts made into keychains for thier backpacks are fun too. 

            I think it might be fun to do a themed series such as below, that would get thier creative juices flowing in anticipation of each step.  Maybe even a shopping trip so they learn how to pick out all the supplies and fabric they will need.

            They could bring t shirts to applique or embellish one visit and the next they could make pajama shorts or pants to match.  Then you could advance to fleece slippers, sleep over bags/pillows, stuffed animals.

            Malden mills website has instructions for working with thier fleece and bindings.  

            There might be a scout troop in your area that would love to work with you on getting thier badges.  Home schoolers are often interested also, they are everywhere and would make great clients as they tend to have quite a large networking ability.  Word of mouth travels fast.

            Sew much fun!  Mary

          6. User avater
            blondie2sew | | #10

            Again thanks for all your wonderful brainstorming with meFunny that you mentioned Carol's Zoo. I had bought a pattern from her at our expo last November. The Cat. For my daughter to sew for her and her sister ,however, she I think right now is kinda intimidated so my younger daughter kept bugging me "mom I want my rainbow kittie done will you make that for me". ( she picked out rainbow fleece) So I just sewed that up this week!! The first time I actually used her pattern and I thought to myself this would make an excellent kids project. So I am hoping she will be at the Rusty Barn expo again we have this November and I can say I actually used her pattern and maybe get more!!I am making a file with all the fun and great ideas everyone is giving me. The Quillo everyone has told me about them, I have seen them, and go figure I haven't even sewn one myself...I must get on that!! Thanks again for your encouragement.
            Right now I am really just wanting to give of my time. I want to impact the kids thru this avenue of sewing. So who knows maybe later on I will be blessed with an income but for now I know I want to use my talents to make a difference. That is what I am focusing on!! Connie

          7. User avater
            blondie2sew | | #11

            Oh my gosh everyone I am sooooooooooo excited!!I chatted briefly with our Principle this afternoon about the program I want to start.And we have an appt. Tomorrow to discuss it furtherShe is sooooo excited and is a huge seamstress as well!! So I am thinking she will get me in the direction of where I need to go to get my funds and such!! Can you tell I am so excited. I have known her and been involved in my kids school for now 6 years and I just started my little one in K this year so I will be around for awhile.I didn't' think I would have a stumbling block with Ms Hoban our principle because we have gotten to know one another and such and well just to find out that she herself is a seamstress is like incredible news!! So upward and forward with my After school Kids sewing program!! ( I am having my daughter and friends think up a cool name for this) YeahI will let you all know how it goes with my meeting tomorrow!!Ciao for now

      2. mygaley | | #12

        A unisex garment that my 20 yo DS, 17 yo DGS, teen DGDs and their friends like is the flannel pajama pants, made with wild prints. They wear them everywhere. This year I will use this same pattern in a solid, with a white trim stripe down the side to mimic rtw. I will sew the outside seams and trim before inseams so I will be working "flat". Fit is not crucial (just make sure crotch length is not too long and hems are long enough to allow for shrinkage); straight seams, simple fly opening, elastic waist and machine hems. I'm sure you know boys and a lot of girls love machines and tools! Give them a hands-on lesson on cleaning and simple repairs and they will love it! Galey

        1. User avater
          blondie2sew | | #13

          Great thanks for your suggestions and ideas!! Gotta love those pajama pants!!!I love ideas shared. Everyone comes out aheadThanks again

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