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Teaching an 8 YO to sew ... Whew!

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Teaching an 8 YO to sew ... Whew! - 1/28/2018 5:35:05 PM   

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From: Central NY
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I have 4 grand daughters - 15, almost 9, 8, and 6.

Over the weekend, the 8 year old - B is her nickname - came to stay to learn how to use the sewing machine she begged for for Christmas, and that grandma & Art got for her. Well ... first ... she had every reason under the sun to postpone lessons. (Art is in rehab following knee replacement surgery, so it was just grandma and B except for a brief visit to the rehab center yesterday afternoon.)

This is my most challenging grand - often disrespectful, doesn't listen ... beyond the 'norm' for this age. My son has had her in counseling, but she follows the example of her mother (they are divorced) who is a rude, all about her individual. Beautiful little girl that I pray for often, she has reading issues, gets bullied in school because she is small for her age, and she acts out in school. Sigh. Okay then ...

I was about at my end of patience and regretting our $70 (w/s&H) expenditure that we laid it out. Finally, I threatened lessons today, or I was returning the machine for a refund. Of course, she had a meltdown at that point and finally decided she wanted to make a purse which, when described, was a cross-body bag. I asked her to draw what she wanted, then I drew up a pattern piece for the purse and she chose some fabrics from my stash. She cut the purse, and the lining, I showed her how to make straps ... how shocked she was when I ripped strips from a fat quarter - LOL, and she cut the flap. She was initially in disbelief when straps, flap and everything was tucked inside before stitching the lining to the bag before turning everything right side out. She did all of the sewing, except stitching the lining to the bag seam - I wasn't sure that little 3/4 Janome had the guts but it sure did. Her bag was decorated with her design of flowers made with zigzag stems and flower buttons. I should have taken pictures.

Today, she overcame her fear of the needle on the machine - which turned out to be the reason for her excuses, learned how to thread the machine, wind a bobbin, cut a pattern, pin pieces, sew a straight line, stitch and clip a curve, and hand sew buttons. Grandma did the pressing - we'll leave her fear of irons for another day. She can't wait to show her friends what she made, and she can't wait to return to make something else. I am hopeful that learning to sew will give her something to feel proud of and gives her confidence.


Member since 2001.
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RE: Teaching an 8 YO to sew ... Whew! - 1/28/2018 7:29:08 PM   


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Kudos to you for the patience you had to see this through, I hope this leads to some future fun with her and her machine.


Happy Sewing, Carol

(in reply to SewLynn)
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RE: Teaching an 8 YO to sew ... Whew! - 1/29/2018 7:34:09 PM   


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Success! She will remember this time with you forever.


Dana, mom of two young men

(in reply to caaguirre)
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RE: Teaching an 8 YO to sew ... Whew! - 1/29/2018 7:46:02 PM   

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From: Central NY
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One can only hope Dana and Carol ... I have no hope for her big sister, and perhaps little hope for her older cousin.

Truly, who on earth would make use of all of my machines and stashes when I'm gone!


Member since 2001.

(in reply to DDinDFW)
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RE: Teaching an 8 YO to sew ... Whew! - 1/29/2018 9:53:14 PM   

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How wonderful!!! I, too, hope your patience will pay off and you have many wonderful experiences sewing with your granddaughter!

(in reply to SewLynn)
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RE: Teaching an 8 YO to sew ... Whew! - 1/30/2018 8:25:47 AM   
Linda S.


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What a wonderful gift you've given this grandchild. She will have this moment with you
to cherish forever, and a purse she can show her friends she made herself!

(in reply to MoDo)
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RE: Teaching an 8 YO to sew ... Whew! - 1/30/2018 6:31:25 PM   

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Way to go, Lynn!! You opened her eyes to a whole new world where her imagination can take wings!!!



"We cannot do great things, we can only do little things with great love." Mother Teresa

Avatar by Mary Engelbreit

(in reply to Linda S.)
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RE: Teaching an 8 YO to sew ... Whew! - 1/30/2018 7:59:33 PM   
Fancy Stitches


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What a fantastic Grandma you are!! You rose above and beyond and earned stars for your crown!! Hopefully, this experience will encourage B to want to learn more and more about the about the passion we all share.


(in reply to KarenVA)
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RE: Teaching an 8 YO to sew ... Whew! - 2/5/2018 3:18:36 PM   


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I feel your pain! I too am teaching my granddaughter who is now 9 to sew. She loves it but she definitely has to be in the MOOD to do it. Sounds like the your granddaughter and mine would be good friends! I have ordered a quilt pattern and fabric for her to make a lap quilt and told her if she does good she can go with me to the Sewing Expo this summer again and take a class with me. She went last year and did a class with putting crystals on a shirt and had a blast! Last weekend she wanted to make a pair of shorts (and snow was on the ground) and she made them. I did the pressing for the hem and elastic but she did the rest! Now she wants to make her dad a pair of boxers!

(in reply to Fancy Stitches)
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RE: Teaching an 8 YO to sew ... Whew! - 2/14/2018 8:02:24 PM   

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From: Boston, MA
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This is a great story! This was such a positive experience for B, who by your description struggles with social issues. I hope you can plan some more "creative play dates" (p.j. pants, tiie dye tee shirt, jeans embellishment, stencilling, decorative machine stitches...)



(in reply to nlsummerlin)
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