In case you need another reason to get stitching, September is officially National Sewing Month! This year, the Sewing & Craft Alliance and the American Sewing Guild are hosting a special NSM contest centered on the theme “Reuse, Remake, Recycle.” Use recycled or repurposed materials to sew up something spectacular, and you could win a prize package and bragging rights when your project is featured on the NSM and ASG Web sites. But hurry–entries are due by September 30th!
Recently, my friend Pam has been hinting that she wants to learn to sew. So I thought, what better time to share my know-how than during a month devoted especially to sewing? For our first “lesson” last week, I invited Pam to the fabric store to pick out a pattern and supplies for her first sewing project–very exciting! At first, Pam thought she wanted to make a simple dress, but as we perused the pattern books, we decided to start with a comfy pair of pajama pants (Butterick 4037) instead. I think that easy non-garment projects, like aprons, pjs, tote bags, etc., are good for beginners to tackle because they can pick out fun printed fabric and not be too concerned if all the seams are straight, etc.
The pattern calls for flannel fabric, so Pam had lots of fun choosing from all the goofy flannel options. She eventually chose a hilarious blue shark print–so ferocious! We found some matching thread (appropriately named “September Sky”), which is the only notion we need to complete the pants. Here’s a sneak peek at Pam’s supplies (Sewing Sidekick Reno seems suspicious of the scary sharks):
This week we’ll probably cut out the pattern pieces and actually do some stitching. As I looked at the pattern instructions, I started thinking about how to best explain all the different pattern terms and symbols. I think that the trickiest part of teaching will be remembering to explain everything that we sewers take for granted. I’ve sewn for 10+ years, so it can be hard to think back to when all that stuff seemed like a foreign language. I can’t wait to get started, though–it was great seeing Pam’s excitement as she realized the potential she’ll have to make anything she wants. Stay tuned for updates as Pam completes her first project!
Have you ever taught someone else to sew? I’d love to hear any teaching advice or pointers!