Sewing Tutorials & Worksheets

How To Make A Lined Zipper Pouch–Beginner Sewing Project 4

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A side view shows the base that helps it to sit upright and a view of the inside gives a peak at the coordinating lining.

Welcome to lesson four of my five beginner sewing project tutorials.  This project repeats most of the skills acquired in the first three lessons and introduces inserting a zipper and a lining.  Neither are too difficult, and both are invaluable basic skills that open up many future project possibilities.  This project looks time intensive, but like the others before, it’s easily taught within the four-hour class time, allowing for warm-up exercises and a twenty-minute break.  I should add here that I have the fabrics pre-cut for students and they choose the combination of elements–zip, ribbon, lining and main fabric. I’ve put in lots more pictures because they can sometimes speak clearer to you than the written instructions.  Don’t ever hesitate to ask me for help with anything. Continue reading

How To Make A Drawstring Backpack–Beginner Sewing Project 3

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Four of my children’s bags–two made by them, two made by me.

Instructions for Backpack-14” wide x 16 1/2” long–This tutorial is pretty straight forward and is a nice step up from the basics taught in project one and project two. There are a couple new skills used–making a casing and then stringing the cording through, and top stitching for extra strength (as well as giving the bag a nice detailed look).  Match your thread to the base color or use a coordinating thread that stands out; you can’t go wrong either way.  Continue reading

How to Worksheet 2–Basic Tools for Beginner Sewing

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This week I will be posting Beginner Sewing Lesson 3, but first another info worksheet.  At the beginning of the second and third class, after warming up on paper (see teaching tips at bottom of this post for printable sheets), I have students sew straight parallel lines on pre-cut scraps of fabric, each 8″ or so.  After each line is sewn, I adjust the stitch length smaller and then larger so they do a variety of tighter and looser stitches.  Why?  So they can rip it all out of course!  Practicing with a seam ripper is a good idea before the inevitable necessity of doing it on an actual project.  Not to say they will never have an oops! on a project (we all do), but they will perhaps be more attentive in their work once they realize correcting mistakes is not as fun as avoiding them in the first place.  And the different stitch lengths helps them understand how much tighter a small stitch length is compared to a larger one. Adding zig-zag stitch (for a challenge) or two fabrics together (this is more realistically what they will be sewing) is another idea.  Heck, if time allows you could have them cut the fabric scraps after marking with ruler and chalk, then four tools would be practiced.  I reuse the scraps from class to class so this is not so practical for me, but if you’ve got the spare fabric (old sheets work great) then go for it!   Continue reading

How Well Do You Know Your Sewing Machine?–Beginner Sewing Worksheet 1

As I prepare to post Beginner Sewing Project 3, I realize there is something else that I incorporate with my classes–info worksheets.  Understanding sewing machines, tools, and terminology is important to become an independent sewist.  This first worksheet explains the very basics of motorized machines (electronic machines vary and manuals should be consulted). Continue reading

How To Make A Reversible Book Cover with Pen Holder and Bookmark–Beginner Sewing Project 2

Reversible Book Cover Tutorial

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It’s was time to think about Christmas gifts for my children’s school teachers and also about getting a move on making the next sewing tutorial.  Again, I completed both tasks in the one go.    Continue reading

Homemade Christmas Gifts for Nieces and Nephews

One thing I've learned from having five children is how much they all love pillows.

One thing I’ve learned from having five children is how much they all love pillows.

Continue reading

How to Make a Picture Pocket Pillow–Beginner Sewing Project 1


Picture Pocket Pillow Tutorial

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Here’s my first sewing tutorial.  Hope you enjoy!                                                                             Continue reading

Who wants to teach sewing?

Learning to sew was the greatest gift of my childhood.  For as long as I can remember, I have been a seamstress.  Sewing is the one thing that I have to offer for sale or barter with absolute unshakable confidence and pride.  I’ve always wanted to give back to the art form that gives so much joy to me therefore, teaching was a natural and obvious choice.   Each month, starting in one month, I will post one of the five project tutorials that I have loved teaching to local children over the last year. They are each designed (and have been used) as a curriculum.  I believe others could use them to offer classes that generate income, same as I have done.  The thorough tutorials will facilitate that. Someone with a basic level of sewing could teach them.  I suggest you complete each tutorial yourself before teaching so it will be familiar–you will also have created a sample finished product which is very helpful for referring to when instructing.  If teaching is not your intent, then maybe you will enjoy making for yourself or as gifts.

What better way to provide than to teach others to provide for themselves?”

you  can buy fabric                                you can't use up creativity

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