Arts and crafts seem to be a big part of any child’s life. From creating drawings when they’re young to finger-painting and to even bigger projects, the majority of children love to be creative. One creative pursuit you might not have taught your child yet is sewing. Teaching a child to sew is a great idea not only because it can be fun but it can be healthy as well. Here, we are going to take a look at exactly why that’s true and even at some easy projects to get them started.
What Are the Health Benefits of Sewing for Kids?
To start, let’s take a look at one of the biggest reasons why children should learn to sew: the health benefits.
Many of these benefits concern mental health. For instance, sewing can relieve stress and increase happiness. This is because it promotes mindfulness and increases the amount of dopamine, respectively. These traits are something that can not only benefit a child now but ones the activity can teach them a skill that will help them throughout life.
There are also developmental benefits of learning to sew. The most obvious is the development of motor skills and hand-eye coordination. Much like a child writing their alphabet over and over to learn to write, the details of sewing can teach children to pay attention to minute details increasingly as they move onto more intricate projects.
Additionally, projects with creativity help to increase your child’s brain’s ability to create new brain cells. This helps them learn and, as they get older, helps to prevent deterioration.
Tips for Teaching Your Child to Sew
Just like anything else, teaching a child to sew takes a slightly different approach than teaching an adult to sew. For one, you’ll want to supervise them carefully as they begin learning and wait off to let them use a sewing machine for safety reasons.
On top of that, you’ll want to remember to be very patient. Learning anything takes time and your child will make mistakes along the way. If you start being short with them or getting frustrated, they’re going to find the learning process much less fun.
You should also start with thicker material like felt. This way, they won’t have to worry as much about accidentally tearing their fabric. It can also be helpful to let them take the lead at times. What do they want to make? What fabric patterns do they want to use? You can even use labels or tags to help them personalize projects like these and mark their creations as one-of-a-kind.
1. Stuffed Tooth
If your child has recently or is about to lose a tooth, it can be a fun craft to make a stuffed tooth. To start, cut two pieces of white felt into the shape of a large tooth. You can use some black thread and a pair of beads to create a face on one piece.
Finally, sew the pieces together and add some stuffing. Remember, to add stuffing, you want to sew the tooth up part way. Stuff it through the slot that is still open and then sew it closed to finish it off.
2. Sewn Cookies
To make sewn cookies, you’ll want to start by cutting two cookie shapes out of some felt. Then, you can help your child use different colors of felt to sew decorations on their cookie. You can then sew the cookie together, taking the time to add stuffing before sealing it completely.
For an extra touch, you can even cut out a shape from the main cookie color. After that, you can sew a color on the back to add color to the cut-out from behind. Sewing loops of thread or adding beads on top of cookies is a great way to add sprinkles to the design.
3. Felt Foxes
These felt foxes are easy! All you need to do is to create an eye-shape from felt for the head. Then, cut out pieces for the face and ears and sew them on. Buttons and pom-poms can be used to add finishing touches to the face. To hang it up or wear it like a necklace, a length of cord or yarn can be attached.
Unlike other sewing projects on this list, this one doesn’t necessarily need stuffing. Of course, you can add it if you want.
4. Easter Eggs
For Easter, do-it-yourself Easter eggs can be a fun craft. You can make the egg itself from one piece of felt or more. To use a single, solid color, you just need to cut out two egg shapes from felt. To use more than one, cut out the pieces you need to create an egg shape and sew them together.
You can also use supplies like bows and lace to add unique touches. Lace or ribbon, in particular, is a good way to cover seams if you are using more than one color for your egg.
5. Make-Your-Own Finger Puppets
Finger puppets offer a lot of creative freedom in what to create. To start, you’ll want to cut out a felt body that is a little bigger than the width of your child’s finger. From there you can help your child with sewing on details such as eyes, noses, tails, and more.
6. Stuffed Owl
Another stuffed friend on this list is a stuffed owl. Like with the other ones on this list, you’ll want to start with the main body. After that, sew on features such as the chest, eyes, and beak. You can add wings and feet once you’ve started to sew the body together. A way to add extra detail to this project is to use threading to mimic feathers on the owl.
7. Felt Bird
We’re going to finish off with another bird – a songbird. Start by cutting the body out of felt. Much like the Easter egg, you can use multiple colors for this. This time, sew the wings on before sewing everything together since they will be directly attached to the body. Make sure to add a little stuffing to give it some shape.
Sewing is a pastime that can be great for kids both when they’re young and as they grow up. You can start teaching them by making smaller, felt projects like the ones we’ve looked at here. Before you know it, your child will be sewing more detailed and complex projects for you to admire!