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Need Sewing Expertise


My niece (11 years old, in sixth grade) wants to learn to sew – at least she’s into A fiber art, if not THE fiber art :wink:
Or as she put it - “I want fashion stuff for Christmas” – as in fabric and maybe a simple pattern. I’m looking for an inexpensive kit to get her. I’ve looked at Purl Soho and they are too expensive and not necessarily appealing to a tween. Other than the occasional button, I do not sew at all, so I can’t offer her much help. She does have a sewing machine to use, but it’s got to be a pretty simple pattern. I would appreciate any leads you can give me! Thanks!


I would suggest a small sewing basket with the basics, (scissors, needles, pins, measuring tape, etc) .which can be found at quilt shops, big box stores, etc. Inside also put a gift card and promise of a trip together to whatever fabric store is in your area that has multiple pattern brands so she can pick something herself. You never know what will appeal to her and there are clearly marked “easy” patterns so she doesn’t get discouraged by too difficult a pattern. Make sure she has thread to match the fabric and a cutting board to cut everything out on. Good luck! I am always thrilled when a young person wants to learn any sort of fiber art so hope she has fun. You might also see if the local quilt or fabric shop offers beginner sewing classes for kids.


I think lessons are a great idea.

I’m a sewist (sewer?) and I’ve heard of these kits. Try calling a few fabric stores to see if they carry any.


I agree with Yarnspinner about the classes, but will add that she could also learn from a beginners book, too. Have her look through pattern books, but I’d steer her away from from Burda’s, because their pattern instructions tend to be skimpy. I learned on a pattern for baby kimonos :blush:


I want to add that there are many on-line classes that allow you to watch techniques again and again. This AM I’m watching Sonya Phillip make pants on Creativebug. Craftsy also offers sewing, and certainly, there are others that I’m not yet aware of…


Confession time: I bought a kids’ sewing book for myself a few years ago, and have found it so handy, even for things that I already know how to do, but might be uncertain whether I’m doing them right.

It’s an Abrams book from the Melanie Falick Era, so it’s very detailed and beautiful. I think it would give a kid a sense of independence to be able to teach herself things she needs to know, as she needs to know them.