Friday, July 23, 2010

Tutorial: Sewing School (one thing, one week challenge)


Accepting the challenge given by Amy, from Amy's Creative Side.
This week we had my niece Katee in town with us. She's ten and has sewn with me on two or three occasions before. For her recent birthday Wally and I got her all the necessary sewing supplies to get started (minus the sewing machine). While I wanted to give her my old White sewing machine, my sister decided she'd rather Katee use her machine (the same as my old Singer)... since of course if Katee ran into any problems my sis would be much more likely to understand how to fix them. So, with the understanding that when she returned home she could set up her mom's sewing machine on the auxiliary dinning room table, we got to work! Here's a breakdown of what we learned etc.

I'd recommend dueling sewing machines for this project... side by side so that the student can really do it all by themselves. Prior to this week, my niece had completed two projects, both using a sewing machine sewing strait lines only, each time following instructions with an example before each step. Hardly independent sewing, so this was done in the hopes of getting her much more comfortable with sewing without me there with her.

Step 1: Machine parts and function.
  • Machine parts: stitch length, stitch width, backstitch button, bobbin winder, presser foot, needle, feed dogs, bobbin.
  • Machine threading.
  • Bobbin winding and threading.
Step 2: Basic skills. Practiced by sewing a basic 9 patch.
  • Sewing with a 1/4 inch seam allowance.
  • Pinning seams.
  • Ironing.
  • Chain piecing.
Step 3: First project, simple potholders.

  • Measuring fabric with ruler/pen.
  • Cutting precisely.
  • Pinning (prepared for the "inside out/pillow case/birthing method").
  • Sewing around the outside, keeping needle down at corners to turn fabric.
  • Leaving an opening for turning inside out.
  • Clipping corners.
  • Turning inside out/poking out corners.
  • Top-stitching around entire outside and closing up the opening.
  • Quilting an "X" on the top, through all layers.
Step 3: Taking what we learned to make another similar project.
  • We used this method to make a small needle book for travel. A basic pillowcase method project, with the addition of a loop for hooking onto a bag or purse, and Velcro sewed on using a zig-zag stitch.
Step 4: A more complex project, pieced potholders bound traditionally.
  • Using pre-cut 2" strips to make a log cabin block.
  • Ironing seams to the side
  • Keeping seams even throughout the project.
  • Choosing colors for fabric.
  • Pinning the quilt sandwich.
  • Quilting across in an "X" pattern.
  • Preparing a strip for single fold binding.
  • Sewing the binding strip on the front mitering corners.
  • Hand sewing the binding to the back, mitering corners.

1 comment:

  1. your niece did a great job! I am sure she is happy to have someone teach her to sew!