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Thread: 4 yr old wants to sew

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Duluth, MN
    Does anyone have any ideas of how to teach (entertain) ab 4 yr old who wants to sew with grandma? I have given him yard and thread to play with, but now he wants to learn how to sew? I have some felt, and all I can think of is teaching him the blanket stitch on the edge. Any suggestions will be appreciated. Thanks

  2. #2
    Super Member maryb119's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    My Grandma started me sewing buttons on a scrap of fabric when I was about 3 years old. She said I sewed and sewed and asked for more thread and buttons.

    When my DGD was little, I gave her my cupcake pan and my button box and asked her to sort them according to color. She loved to play with them.

  3. #3
    Senior Member DawnMarie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Blog Entries
    I let my daughter stand next to me and push the floor pedal while I'm piecing. She understands that she needs to pay attention and lift up her foot when the needle is approaching a pin.
    I also have let her arrange patches on the floor, like a design wall.
    She loves going through my scraps and picking out stuff she likes.
    I've even taken her to the sit n' sew at our LQS. She picked out some FQs, and I helped her to make a purse.
    I have taught her the technical jargon of a sewing machine so she can identify the parts (presser foot, needle plate, foot pedal, etc.).
    I'm starting my 1 year old on the jargon too. He now knows bobbin, needle, and thimble. We're getting there. :)
    Good luck. Also, remember that at 4, their attention span isn't huge, so little jobs are better to do that ones that take a while.

  4. #4
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    Jan 2009
    Front row
    Blog Entries
    A four year old's attentions span isn't very long, about 15 min. if I remember right. Give him a threaded needle and some fabric squares with the seam line drawn. He'll be busy and interested in spurts. When my grand would want to help me sew and do something different every 20 mins or so I sent her to help grandpa for a while. They just want to do what you are doing no matter what it is.

  5. #5
    Super Member thequilteddove's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    How exciting! I wish my GD wanted to learn. She doesn't have use of her feet or legs, so I have taught myself how to sew using my elbow to push the foot pedal, which leaves my hands free so I can still guide the fabric!

    I can't wait until she's ready to learn :) For now she's happy just touching my leg... when she touches my leg, I start sewing. When she takes her hand off, I stop :) Even that doesn't last more than a few minutes and she ready to do something else (she just turned 4 in April).

  6. #6
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Northern Michigan
    Blog Entries
    my youngest granddaughter was 4 when she made her first quilt...we started with a little people (toy-singer) it did a simple chain stitch- and was more aggrivation than worth- i went shopping, found an inexpensive Brother machine that had speed control on it...i think that is a very important feature on a machine a child will use.
    she already had her own stash of fabrics...she laid them out on the floor how she wanted them- she worked as if on a design wall- picking up 2 pieces, sewing them together- replacing them, taking next, ect...
    some of her seams were 1 1/2" wide, some were 1/8" wide...i did not criticize- or make her change anything- it was her project...
    it meant everything to her- her daddy had just been deployed and she was afraid he would forget her...
    she even printed her favorite picture of her daddy holding her- onto fabric and included it in the quilt-
    when she got the top done i tipped a dresser onto it's side for her to stand/walk on and she used the long-arm to quilt it
    we did a folded binding (back to front) so she could do that part too...
    the only thing i did through the whole project (took her 4 days) was
    i pressed any fabric she felt needed ironing-
    and i loaded the quilt on the big frame- she was not big enough to help with that...
    she used scissors and cut her own fabrics...
    and 6 1/2 years later- daddy is getting ready to deploy again...and that quilt still travels the world..and is looking pretty good.

    standing on a dresser to quilt
    Name:  Attachment-197728.jpe
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Size:  50.4 KB

  7. #7
    Super Member AngieS's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Western Kentucky
    My lil girl is 3 and is always wanting to sew. :) I'm afraid to give her a needle yet though. I'm afraid she'll poke herself. Are you all using a special needle or anything?

  8. #8
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    My GD wanted to do what I was doing so I gave then plastic canvas and a blunt needle with yarn helped them for a little while and they lost interest then any time they wanted to do it I just gave them that and the youngest got good at it

  9. #9
    Senior Member sosewcrazy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    West Virginia
    Get some burlap, yarn, and a yarn needle which isn't sharp. Draw a simple outline on the burlap and show him how to sew on it. I used to do this with kindergarteners to build up their finger muscles and eye-hand coordination, and they loved it! Put masking tape around the edges to avoid fraying.

  10. #10
    Senior Member redturtle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    why not try the plastic canvas mesh...you can get the plastic needles and let the kids pick out a couple of their favorite colors of yarn...

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