Thursday, September 19, 2013

The Joy of Teaching Sewing

Victoria-Rose and Lyda with their matching pillowcases.
 Victoria-Rose, my college sophomore daughter, and her friend Lyda have recently decided that they want to learn how to sew.  Picture me mentally jumping up and down and screaming with joy but calmly and casually saying, "Sure, honey, why don't you invite Lyda to come home with you for the weekend?"  (I didn't want to scare them away!  I've been waiting for this day for YEARS!)

I spent the week before their arrival home planning and getting things ready.  I purchased Parts Gear boxes for them and filled them with a Singer sewing kit (12 threads, seam gauge, sear ripper, pin cushion, pins, shears, etc.), glass headed pins, embroidery scissors, needles, and small plastic containers of buttons.  I also purchased detailed Singer sewing books for them.  I decided that pillowcases with their straight seams would be perfect for beginning seamstresses.

On Saturday, the girls took my JoAnn's coupons, yardage amounts, and a gift card to JoAnn Fabrics and Crafts to choose their coordinating fabrics for two pillowcases each.  They were gone for HOURS!  Victoria-Rose later said that they were overwhelmed by the selections and distracted by all the goodies in the store.  She also said that she now understood how I could spend hours there!

The girls decided that their first pillowcases would be matching ones of dark green with a cream/green floral border and cream cluny-type lace.  Each girl also made another pillowcase with different fabrics.  Lyda's was a blue floral and Victoria-Rose chose a purple floral but changed her mind when she got home.  She then 'shopped' in my stash and chose the fabrics in the photograph below.  Her second case was made to fit a king sized pillow she uses at school.

The girls learned how to make French seams and overcast seams for clean finishes and how to attach lace edging using a tiny zig-zag stitch.  I was so proud of them and they were proud of themselves!
The girls and Victoria-Rose's second case.  Lyda had her other
one packed in her tote already.
They have already chosen fabric from my stash to make totes the next time Lyda visits.  Am I happy?  You bet I am!!!

 The photos below show a bolster I recovered and another small pillow for Victoria-Rose's bed at school.  The cross-stitching on the little pillow was from a set of ten pieces I found at the Hospice Resale shop near us.  Someone had done all the work for a quilt but then didn't put it together.  The colors went well with Victoria-Rose's color scheme in her dorm/apt. room.

The back of the pillow with an 'envelope' style closure.  The bird will not be up-side down if the pillow is turned the right way up!
To Ponder:
A life well lived is simply a compilation of days well spent.
Douglas Pagels
Have a delightful day!


  1. Yay! That's wonderful that the young ladies enjoyed their first sewing experience and are excited for their next project.:)

  2. Beautiful! They did a great job. Any advice for teaching 5th graders how to hand sew (can't have sewing machines at school).

  3. What fun! I'm looking forward to when my daughters are old enough to learn to sew. =)

  4. Zippadeedoodah! I can just imagine how hard it must have been to try to contain your excitement! You got them off to a great start--lessons, fabric of their choice and a sewing kit! Wonderful!

  5. Thank you, ladies, for sharing my excitement! I am looking forward to the next lesson.

  6. Look at what a beautiful young woman your DD has grown into, Karen...I'm astounded! She truly IS all grown up!
    I'm laughing at their trip to JA's & completely understand. LOL

    I think you did a great thing, starting them off with all the right essentials to make sewing a pleasure. yay You & Them!


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