Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Saint Nolt Sewing School 2013

Summer brings a break in our normal schedule, so I invited two of my daughter's friends to a Summer Sewing School.  I have two old sewing machines, so that was my limiting constraint.  The girls brought the brightest spirits and a hunger to learn.  They spoiled me as a teacher with their great attitude.  Let me give you some details:

Felt from Heather Bailey's store.
Quilting cotton from The Sweetest Thing by Zoe Pearn and Riley Blake Designs.
(I purchased 1 yard cuts of almost the whole collection to give the girls a choice of fabrics.)
Sewing totes were discontinued, but can be found here.
Trim and buttons from Joann's.  ( I purchased these in bulk to allow ample choices.)

Needle case pattern from My First Sewing Book edited by, Susan Akass
Bookmark - Self drafted pattern based on this Pinterest pin.
Owl Scissors holder - Self drafted pattern base on this Pinterest pin.
Drawstring pouch - Self drafted pattern
Keychain Self drafted pattern based on this Pinterest pin.
Pincushion pattern from My First Sewing Book edited by, Susan Akass
PJ Shorts - Self drafted pattern
PJ t-shirt embellishment - Each girl designed an original
Decoration of sewing totes based on pictures from Made by Me by, Jane Bull

We met six times for a few hours to work on our projects.  Some of the handwork was assigned as homework.  I had three sewing machines set up and plenty of workspace on my cutting table.  The iron was supervised at all times.  Six lessons was enough to introduce a few topics, but not gain expertise in anything.  Nine year olds still need lots of supervision.  I combined hand and machine sewing.  One must learn both to be a great seamstress.  After my projects were selected in the spring, a few really cute kids sewing books were published.......future schools.........I can see it...........

What I learned
When a little girl is interested in crafts and sewing, they have a huge appetite for it.  The hardest part of planning a class is allotting the proper amount of time for each step and the pace of the worker.  Running a good school isn't always about sewing knowledge, but how organized and prepared you are for the class period.

Enjoy my picture story of our class.

Careful cutting!

Learning to use pins.

All attention on cutting.

Machine Sewing.

Ironing with caution.

Crazy moments with the girls.

Showing the girls how to line up seams and pin.

Everyone on the sewing machines.

Pincushion #1.

Pincushion #2.

Pincushion #3.

Hand embroidery

Marked our design with disappearing markers.

Adding buttons to our designs.

The girls made their PJ shorts and then hand embroidered a design on the purchased t-shirt.

Drawstring bags with embellishments.

All three pincushions.

Happy girls with their pincushion.

Felt needle case with cherries on front.

They were proud of their needle cases.

Sewn keychains.

Felt owl scissor holders.

Hand-stitching these was tough.  So happy to finish!

Fabric bookmarks.

Lots of glue, trim, and buttons!

Cute original design for the inside of this box.

Love the sweet colors on this box.

Sewing cases ready for each girl.

All my projects by this sweetheart.

All my projects by another sweetheart.

All my projects from my daughter.
Let's see what the future holds for more sewing schools. 


  1. That is so (sew!) fun! All the projects turned out so cute. My daughter would have just loved to go to something like this when she was their age. I admire your initiative in doing this. Thank you (and your sweet students) for sharing!

  2. Oh, how fun! I think you've found some budding designers here!

  3. That is so, so wonderful! I've been teaching my neighbor girl and my daughter for several years now, but I'm not remotely this organized about it! I LOVE your whiteboard with each step of the process laid out for the kids. I may be stealing some of your ideas!
    -Jenny Jo

  4. Bravo! Getting the next generation excited about handstitching!

  5. Great ideas! What ages are the girls? I have 3 daughter's that I hope to do this with soon.