Teaching kids to sew can be harder then it sounds. Most find normal sewing projects boring or too difficult. The trick is to find something easy and interesting.
My personal favorite sewing project for kids would be making jean purses or book bags. They require very little patterning, look cool, and most of the hems are already done so it is a good encouragement project. .
What You Will Need:
1. A Pair of Old Jeans.
2. Sharp Scissors
3. Heavy needle
4. Thread that matches your jeans.
If you don’t have a handy pair of jeans lying around try going to a yard sale or flea market. Usually you can find a good pair for under $1. If there are no sale’s in your area you may want to try looking on eBay. Also it is possible to use thread that does not match the jeans but as this is a first project the sewing is going to look shabby so the more it blends in the better.
Lay the jeans flat on either the floor or a table. Smooth them out and make sure all of the hems match up. This is to ensure straight cutting. Next take your scissors and cut a small hole right above the hem in the crotch of the jeans. Insert your scissors into the hole and being careful to only cut one layer at a time cut the legs and bottom of the crotch off of the jeans.
Cut the remaining pants legs apart. Take one of these and cut out the front section between the seams. This will be the purse handle so if you would like it to be shorter cut some of the denim off of either the top or the bottom.
Thread your needle and place a small knot at the end of the thread. Turn the top of the pants inside out and sew the bottom together all the way across. I would recommend doing a double layer of stitches for strength. Next you will want to fold your seam over so that the ends are completely covered and place another line of stitches across the bottom. This prevents fraying and helps the bag to last longer. Turn the bag right side out and pull the pockets out. Carefully cut them off evenly with the denim. Sew the holes together and hem the seams.
Take the leg piece intended for the handle and fold half of it over the lighter side of the fabric. You can secure with pins if necessary. Sew down the full length of the fabric and be sure that it is secure. Next you should take the edge of the other side and create a very small hem. Then fold it over so that the hem is overlapping your previous seam. Sew another line of stitches so that both seams are attached.
Turn your bag inside out and squarely place about an inch of your handle on the side seam. Pin this in place and secure with at least four rows of stitches. Do the same with the other end of the handle but be sure that the two ends are symmetrical before sewing or the purse will be lopsided.
Congratulations. You have a bag.
Please note that if you would like a smaller or larger bag, simply change the size of the pants. Womens pant’s are probably going to be more decorative and attractive then using men’s but either will work. As always do not leave children unsupervised with either needles or scissors. Thank You
Brandy Cross, Jean Purse: Starter Sewing Project For Kids, Associated Content