Friday 8 January 2010

First Sewing project

The last couple of days Ebi-kun has been driving me nuts wanting to do his own sewing project. Although he has done some bits of sewing before this is the first time the project was all done by him.

What you will need:
  • 2 rectangles of felt
  • 2 buttons
  • a large needle, (I went with a sharp carpet needle and I am sure there are people cringing as I write this BUT like using a knife, I feel that he is less likely to having an accident using a super sharp needle since it glides through the fabric easily, a blunt needle would need more forcing and so making it easier to slip.
  • embroidery ring
  • a few safety pins
  • stuffing
  • embroidery floss
I didn't take a picture of this, but start with marking spots for the eyes and a mouth onto the first piece of felt. Put the felt in the embroidery ring. Then show the child how to sew on the buttons, I did the first couple of stitches, modelling how to do it.

I did all the starting and finishing, tying of knots etc., I wanted the project to be kept as simple as possible so that he would see it through to the end and so he could concentrate on the process of stitching.

Once the eyes are on, stitch the mouth. We used felt buttons but any type with holes will do.

Once the face is finished, place the two pieces of felt together and pin together with safety pins, as an adult I would use normal sewing pins but they stick in you so I reckoned safety pins would be a much better idea.

Sew around the edge, leaving a gap for stuffing. As you can see he went over the edge a couple of times instead of up and down, I think it adds to the character :o) Remove the safety pins.

Stuff with your favourite type of filling, polyfil in this case.

Then sew up the hole, I put a couple of safety pins again to keep the stuffing in and the felt flat to make it easier to sew.

And then you are done, show it off to all and sundry!
Although he wanted to do a much more complicated project involving arms, legs and hair I managed to convince him to keep it simple first time, explaining that he should learn the basics first before moving on to more advanced things (I should take my own advice on that one!) He did take a couple of breaks, raced Spotty around the kitchen several times and jumped off the sofa, you know the sort of thing but he did finish it in one morning without any nagging from me.


  1. O It is so good to see a child concentrating so well on a task like that.

    Now that you are getting ready to send him to Yochien, I can't wait to see the bags you will make (referring to the kind of bags that mamas all over Japan make for when kids go to school).

  2. Very, very cool. Well don Mr Ebi-kun!

  3. LOL, I keep trying to find out how much fabric I will need so that i can go and get it this month but today they told us that there will be an explanation day in March :o(. Last year I swore I would not enter any craft or fabric shop in March since they are swapped with moms trying to buy what they need. In Nippori you can only buy fabric by the metre and there were moms arguing with the shop staff because they only wanted to by 30 cm! Never again!!

  4. I forgot to tell you about the knoghts project we are diong at school. I downloaded all your materials and it is taking a beating! I have had to remake some of the cards because they were so loved the "went home" with some-one!

    I have made the poem into a cut and stick exercise as well because they all wanted to take it home to read to parents and siblings. They could all have learnt it by heart but there is a massive reading surge going on round my way so they all wanted something to read! So they cut it, stuck it, illustrated it and laminated it.

    I just wanted to let you know it has been a fantastic resourse. Thank you very much for making it.

  5. Fantastic! thank you for letting me know, it is lovely to get feedback from the things I make. Ebi-kun is still very into knights and i can't see it wearing off any time soon!

  6. very very cool project from ebi-kun. bravo!

  7. How do you know when they're ready to learn to sew? What skills/sctivities lead up to a project like this?

  8. What a fun first project! KarateKid (7) has done a few little things but hasn't done buttons yet, he'd love making a face like this.

  9. The exercises we did leading up to this - started with lacing cards and he tried his hand using burlap and a rounded plastic needle but he wasn't so impressed with that then as an advent activity I sewed a Xmas tree to a piece of fabric then put it in an embroidery ring and showed him how to sew the buttons on, he sewed about 15 of them! Since then he has been driving me crazy to do his own project, I am thinking of making him a box with scraps and bits and bobs so he can go ahead and try it by himself. We will have to do a lesson on starting and ending first though.

    I also think that anything that works those pincer muscles will help.

    Does that help?

  10. Oh, so lovely, he is very talented and I love the result!
    Congratulations Mom and Ebi-kun!!

  11. Yes, that gives me a pretty good idea. Thanks!

  12. this is precious! good job little guy!

  13. It's so good to see boys learning sewing skills, too! I just did this project with my 4 year old boy. He is so proud of his face pillow! Thanks for posting this!

  14. This is such a cute project for the Grands. Thank you for sharing this with us!


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