Have you ever tried a simple kids sewing project with your children? My daughters, who are five and nine, love making items for themselves and it’s surprising how many great things they can make, even as beginner sewers.
We always have a making box available, full of junk boxes and bits of craft materials, which the children can dip into any time they want too make something and I’ve started to offer sewing equipment too. If I’m starting a new needlework project I always feel a little nervous just at that moment when I’m about to take my shears to a perfect piece of beautiful fabric, but I’ve noticed my children are much more relaxed and confident about it. As their materials are freely available to them, rather than there being a precious hoard stashed away somewhere, I find they are much more likely to get stuck in and use them. They enjoy trying out new ideas and techniques, and the creativity flows.
Equipment for a simple kids sewing kit
- I’ve put together a basket with the basics for them: some needles, pins, scissors. We use real equipment but always with a reminder to be safe and sensible. For toddlers a blunt needle with a fabric with a wide weave works well, but older children very soon become frustrated if the needle is so safe they can’t actually sew with it. We agree everyone sits down if they’re sewing, puts the needle back in the case as soon as they’re finished, and I supervise while they work on their projects.
- We include a selection of fabric, some bought from the craft store, particularly when there’s a sale on, and some cut from old clothes and sheets. These are there for them to use however they want and I encourage them to snip away and give things a try.
- An embroidery hoop is a great addition to the kit as it’s really useful to hold fabric in place, leaving your child with both hands free to co-ordinate the sewing.
- A selection of coloured threads is good too, but not too fine, so that they stand up to some tugging. It’s a good idea when you thread the needle to double up the thread and tie both ends together in a knot as then your child can sew and pull the thread through without it constantly pulling off the needle and needing to be re-threaded.
- Some buttons and ribbon for extra embellishments are always a big hit.
Easy sewing crafts to try
- Let your children simply sew to begin with. Place some fabric in an embroidery hoop and let them sew with a brightly coloured thread. They can add some buttons and beads too for extra decorations. It doesn’t matter how neat or uneven the stitches are or even if the thread gets tangled from one side of the fabric to the other – these are great first steps in learning the basics.
- Invite your children to draw a picture on the fabric with a pencil and then stitch over the top, creating a keepsake of their art
- How about making a decoration to hang on the door? Fold over a piece of fabric and let your child cut out two heart, star or letter shapes. Sew around the edge, popping in a little stuffing just before the end, and leaving a loop of thread to make a handle to hang by. My daughter made the heart in the photo in just this way to give as a gift to her best friend.
Have your kids ever tried a simple sewing project?
What did your child make? Please share an idea with us in the comments.