E is for Education

“Just when I thought I was out... they pull me back in...”

Not like school is the same as being in the Corleone family or anything... but school’s out for the summer!? Not entirely! This week, I had the awesome pleasure of teaching a sewing camp called “Accessorize it!” ...and please don’t forget the exclamation mark.


All but one of my students (age 10, approximately) hadn’t used a sewing machine prior to showing up to class on Day 1. Fresh meat! And thanks to some generous friends and colleagues, we had a 1:1 ratio for machines. We spent the week cranking out all kinds of accessories: bracelets, drawstring pouches, pins, tote bags, infinity scarves, and even hair scrunchies (hello 90’s!).

To summarize:

The experience was educational for all parties. The students were eager and energetic, their final products were elegant, and their egos were elevated (ever so slightly) and I believe they have truly caught the sewing bug.

Yay! More little sewists for the world. But I'll tell you who also learned a thing or two... this guy. (Pointing to myself.)

Basic lessons learned:

  1. Bring extra sewing machine needles. Within 20 minutes of the first class, two needles broke, and we were down to three machines. Rookie mistake!

  2. Draw lines for students to sew along! Beginners (who are also ten-years-old) tend to veer off course.

  3. When drawing said lines, DON’T use a turquoise Sharpie. Use a writing utensil that doesn’t bleed through!

More exciting lessons learned (or re-learned):

  1. Sewing is FUN.

  2. Watching a bobbin wind is AH-mazing. I had a crowd around me EVERY time we had to wind a bobbin. They were in complete and utter awe.

  3. Sewing on a machine is a lot like driving. Therefore, when a person under the age of 16 is sewing... do NOT assume they understand the “your foot controls the show” idea.

  4. Do not even bother to give advice to a ten-year-old about which colors look best together. They have their own ideas about that, and cannot be convinced otherwise.

  5. Also, don’t bother telling a ten-year-old about what is/isn’t trendy. Making an infinity scarf is apparently a lot less fun than making a long piece of cloth that you can turn into a blindfold or use to whip your friend.

Now... "E"njoy a few pictures from class:


Hey you! Check out the "Blue Tool" here. This thing is MAGICAL for turning straps and threading drawstrings.