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Friday, April 16, 2021

Sewing at 4-years-old + How We Got Here

Sewing is having a moment in our house right now! All of a sudden, everywhere I look is little hand sewn projects. We have a few new pillows around here, lots of fabric with people's names sewn onto them, and even some doll clothes. It's so interesting watching all of this as a person that really can't sew. I can hand stitch a tiny bit, but beyond that I'm completely clueless. 


And while Nora has always loved sewing projects, it's really Gus that is driving the new interest in sewing these days! At 4-years-old, he is patient and dedicated to his work. He can plan a project and see it through, even over the course of a couple days. It's been really fun to watch this blossom in him and I can't help what great work it is for his hands as he starts to explode into writing. 


This work definitely hasn't come out of nowhere! He has been working with sewing type activities for many years. Starting with bead lacing, and move through a variety of activities as he gets older. These are just some big examples, but there have been other smaller steps too - like learning to tie a knot and learning to thread a needle. 

Now, Gus really has the freedom to sew whatever comes to his mind. He may need a little help here and there, but he honestly has a lot of skills to be independent with hand stitching. In order to make this a reality, we just prepare our space to allow him (and Nora) more independent access to sewing materials. 


So our art area, for example, has a basket of fabric scraps that the kids can use for projects. We also have a bag of pillow stuffing available. Since Gus is proficient in the skills, we don't have specific work out focusing on skill building. If he wasn't in a Montessori school (which has those trays) we might still have some specific skill building work available to him. Like a tray that just focuses on threading a needle, or just focuses on certain stitches. 

The kids also have access to their own sewing box filled with the tools they need to carry out the work they have decided to undertake. I will share soon what the little box contains, but it has everything they need to be independent in the sewing process. From scissors to thread and needles, the box is their portable way to undertake sewing work. Finally, they have access to several sizes of embroidery hoops if they think that will make their work easier. 


So if you're looking to get started, think about some of that work listed above, even if you child is a little bit older than the ages listed. Build individual skills first then provide the materials in the environment for free exploration. 


Does your child like to sew? What are some of their favorite projects? 
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Would you like to comment?

Unknown said...

Absolutely on time! We haven't done any sewing, but I can see my daughter would be interested and her birthday is coming soon (please don't take too long with that post about the sewing box!!).

Sorry to hear about the stomach flu... Hope everyone's tummies settle soon!

AE

Michaela said...

Hi Nicole! Can you explain more about the embroidery and bead sewing work? My toddler loves any kind of threading and I’d like to introduce these more advanced materials :) thank you!