kid's & sewing | sewing | sewing school

Sewing: Summer Camp 2017

By on August 7, 2017

This summer I had the joy of leading two sewing camps for kids ages 2nd grade on up. The first week, I had a Sewing 101 camp with two sessions: one in the morning and one in the afternoon. I had two awesome groups of campers and as always I walked away with amazement at the creativity so many of these kiddos had. Here’s a sampling of some of their projects:

Camp 101 : 2017

Learning how to use the sewing machine for the very first time!

Camp 101 : 2017

Making a banner for her room.

Camp 101 : 2017

Camp 101 : 2017

Camp 101 : 2017

For the first year I had boys! They were awesome!

Camp 101 : 2017

Camp 101 : 2017

Fairy dolls and Pirates.

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For a few years now I’ve wanted to try a Fashion Camp, but was super nervous about it. This year I bit the bullet and did it and I’m so glad I did. I had an awesome group of girls and we made so many great things – and all of them came together so well! They were super proud of all they made and I was super excited that everything fit!

Fashion Camp 2017

We ended the week making dresses using Sis Boom’s Molly Peasant dress. I modified it a little bit for our purposes; leaving out the waist elastic. It ended up being an awesome first garment project.

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We made some Purl Bee City Gym Shorts, which turned out so great. This actually ended up being a pretty challenging project with the bias binding, but they did so great. I pre-made all the binding for the girls, but they pinned it on themselves and for the most part sewed it on all by themselves.

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In between projects the girls got creative. They worked together and made a little fruit basket and helped a friend make a family of monsters.

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Overall they both came together well and I looked forward to another summer of sewing in 2018!

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kid's & sewing | sew a story | sewing

Sewing: Preschool Sew a Story

By on November 28, 2016

I recently finished up teaching a preschool class that I labeled “Sew a Story.” The premise was: we read a few books on a theme and then do a few pre-sewing activities that correlate with the theme. While it ended up being a much bigger class to prep for that I had anticipated, I have to say that it went really well and my little group of preschoolers did awesome (not to mention their awesome parents who stayed and helped!)

Here’s a glimpse into some of the activities we did. I’m hoping to either put together an e-book of activities or a series of posts here sometime in 2017 because so many of the sewing activities that we did are just too fun not to share!

Rainbows: we did some weaving
sew a story

Buttons week:
sew a story

Sew A Story

Gardens: we made some sunflowers and a small flower garden
sew a story

Spiders: we made some webs
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Pumpkins
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It was a 10 week class and we did about 2-3 activities with 2-3 books per class. I’m excited to put the whole curriculum together into some form to share. Check back in the new year!

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kid's & sewing | sewing

Sewing for little hands: Build a Softie

By on July 20, 2016

softiecover

 

This spring I had the great joy of teaching a few Saturday sewing classes to some great girls and one of my favorite classes was our Build a Softie day. Last Sunday was Sew a Softie day around the world and while I’m a little late to the game I wanted to share this fun activity we did in our class. This is a great designing and sewing activity to fill these last, crazy hot days of summer before school starts up again.

First up, you will need to gather some supplies:
cotton fabric and felt scraps
trim, ribbon, ric rac etc
polyfill stuffing
scissors
chenille #22 needle
thread (I recommend either thin crochet thread or cotton perle embroidery floss size 5)
a needle threader (I highly recommend Loran needle threaders)
buttons for eyes
directions for making your pattern buildasoftie

How to Build a Softie:

Build a Softie Class

Using your Design a Softie sheet, first figure out what shape body you want your softie to have. Using a sheet of printer paper, draw out the shape of the body (make sure to draw it a little bigger than you want it to be. This is called adding a seam allowance – that’s the little bit of fabric that is in the inside where you sewed the two pieces together) Repeat this process for the legs, wings, arms and the rest of the body parts you want to include. Remembering ever time to draw your pattern pieces a little bigger than you want them to be. Cut out your paper pattern.

Build a Softie Class26824689400_bbe05e6a8e_b

Taking your fabric scraps and your paper pattern, cut out the pieces of your softie. Make sure you cut out 2 body parts (a front and a back), two wings, two arms/legs etc. For the ears I recommend using felt because it’s a bit stiffer and the ears will stand up by themselves.

Build a Softie Class
Build a Softie Class

Now decide if you want to add some trim to separate the head from the body. You can use ribbon, ric rac or even a strip of fabric. Pin this down to the front of your softie and take it to your sewing machine. If you know how to sew with a zig zag stitch, go ahead and sew this down with a wide zig zag straight down the middle of your trim piece. Repeat on the back of your softie (if you want).

Next up, decide what sort of face you want for your softie. Add some eyes, a nose or a beak and using a whipstitch or a running stitch sew these onto the front of your softie.

Now you need to sew your legs and arms. Match each leg up with it’s front and back with right sides facing (this means the backside of the fabric is showing). Sew a straight stitch on your sewing machine all the way around the sides – leave the top open. Check to make sure you don’t have any holes and once you’ve sewn all of them, flip them right side out. You might need to use a chopstick or a seam ripper to help you pull out all the edges.

Build a Softie Class

Now take your arms and legs and pin them in place to the right side of the front piece of your softie. They should each be laying inside. Put the back piece on top – with right sides facing – and pin it to the top.

Build a Softie Class

Sewing really slowly on your machine, sew a seam all around the outside of your softie. Make sure you leave an opening in the side for stuffing. I like to leave my hole on the side between the arm and the leg. Before you flip your softie right sides out, stick your hand in the hole and take out all the pins.

Build a Softie Class

Then flip him right side out and your arms and legs should flip out! Go ahead and start stuffing. And stuff and stuff and stuff!

Build a Softie Class

Sew up the hole with a whipstitch.

Build a Softie Class

And give your new little friend a big hug!

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kid's & sewing

Learning to Sew: Kiddos & Adults

By on March 21, 2016

It’s actually been a quiet year when it comes to sewing classes, but with all my new responsibilities this past year I’ve honestly been a bit relieved. That said, it’s been good to start teaching again.

I’ve had a couple of private lessons with some little ladies over the past few months and it’s such fun to work with them on a one to one basis rather than trying to split myself 8 ways in a group class.

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The biggest perk has been being able to teach in my new space. I moved back downstairs to our basement this past fall and I’m still in the process of figuring out how to organize it and decorate my little corner.

studio view 1/2016

A few weekends ago I did my first 5 hour School of Sewing intensive and it was such fun.

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We worked through the basics of how our sewing machines work all the way up to making skirts in the end.

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I’ve got a few Saturday Sewing classes for youth coming up this Spring; one per month from April to June.
And then I’ve got one kids sewing camp in July.
You can find all the info and registration here.

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crafting | etsy | kid's & sewing | party planning | sewing school

Learning to Sew: celebrating with sewing

By on July 29, 2015

The other night I had the joy of celebrating one little girl’s birthday with a little sewing.

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Eleven sweet girls gathered around tables with hoops, needles and a mix of felt flowers and buttons and created these cute little flower hoops. sewing party 2015

It’s always so much fun to watch someone pick up a needle and thread for the first time and then see their joy when they master the rhythm of up and down.

sewing party 2015

I love the creativity and how different everyone’s hoops turned out. Some of the girls went crazy with the flowers, some were slow and meticulous and some went for simplicity. It was great!

Interested in throwing a party like this? I offer these sets individually in the shop and I’m contemplating offering party sets in 2016. But you can put your own set together too. Here’s my suggestions:

Putting together a flower hoop party set:
brown kraft paper (to wrap the tables with)
six inch wooden embroidery hoops
size 22 chenille needles
size 5 cotton pearl embroidery floss (you can find these with all the typical embroidery floss – usually hanging on the wall)
felt flower cut outs in a mix of colors
felt initials (about 3″ in size)
Ribbon for hanging
a mix of flower buttons and regular round buttons
and white felt circles (about an inch larger than your hoops)

Before the party, set all your white felt circles in the hoops and thread all your needles.
I highly recommend having a needle threader (this one is the bomb) handy for those times with needles to come unthreaded)
Lay out your flowers and initials on the table.
Sew on your initials first using a running stitch and then sew on the flowers and buttons. Remind your little party goers to always start from the bottom and bring your needle up and down.
Tie a ribbon through the screw hole and enjoy.

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