Guest writer: Miss Holly writes about handicraft skills
I would like to introduce you to my very first guest writer - Miss Holly. Miss Holly is 10 years old and my cousin's granddaughter. She is homeschooled along with her brother. One of her hobbies is sewing and she is very talented. I thought I would ask her to share some of her projects that she has been working on which may encourage other young women and girls to sew. As Holly says, sewing allows you to make your own clothes, but as you will see in this blog post, you can also make gifts for others too.
I hope you enjoy this blog post.
I love sewing. I think it is an important skill for young girls to start learning at about the age of 8 (or younger if they can), and use that skill for the rest of their life. It is important because you can’t always buy clothes that are modest or the right size. Also, when you buy something you can’t really pick the colour of the fabric, or the print. You can’t really pick whether it has lace or ribbon or ties at the back or not. And if you don’t want to copy people by wearing the exact same thing, then you can sew it. It is your choice of pattern and your design, and nobody else can have it unless you give it away or someone else copies you.
When you draw a picture, you just have a picture to show for it. But when you sew, you feel very achieved, as if you’ve accomplished something. You can use it, like if it’s a bag, or you can wear it if it’s clothes, or you can give it away as a gift because handmade things make great gifts.
If you haven’t learned to sew yet, you could start by sewing something simple, like the Simplicity “Learn to Sew” patterns. From that you will learn more skills until you are confident enough to sew anything you want, like my mummy and aunts and Cousin Jo do.
I have been sewing for years, and now I am ten years old, a decade. I have sewn many things for myself using my sewing machine, such as:
- A dress: the dress was rather easy, and I only made two mistakes. I always need Mama’s help with my sewing (she did the over-locking to stop the seams fraying, and she did shirring on my dress neckline and waistline).
- Three skirts: one skirt I sewed three years ago. The fabric is see-through, so I have to wear a slip beneath. (above - pale blue skirt with white print)
- Another skirt I sewed a few months ago. Two of my cousins have this style skirt with the same fabric; I helped them sew theirs, then sewed mine. (below - blue skirt with pink flowers)
- The third skirt’s flowery fabric was bought by my honourary aunt for me on my birthday. Mama already had the blue fabric and ribbon which we matched with it. (below - peachy-red floral skirt with blue band)
- For two of my cousin’s birthdays, I made a headband.
- I made some tissue holders, and Mama put them in her online shop. Just a few of them sold though.
- For my cousin Sammy’s birthday I made a pair of teddy pyjama shorts.
- I’ve also made two pairs of pyjama shorts for my Papa, which he has worn many times.
- I made a bag for myself. It’s a rather clever style bag because one handle slips through the other to make it closed.
- I also sewed a winter vest using soft minky fleece. It was thick fabric and difficult to sew on the bias binding on the edges, so Mama sewed it on for me.
I have also learned to sew by hand. I have learned to sew on buttons and press-studs/snaps so I can repair clothes when the buttons fall off. And Mama and I have been working on a hand-sewn quilt together. We’re both sewing strips of squares, which we will then sew together to make the quilt. Hand sewing is a really good skill to learn so you can mend clothes (like putting up hems when they fall down) or just sew things by hand rather than always using a machine. It’s important to practise making very tiny, neat stitches. This is the first strip I’m working on for our quilt.
I learned to crochet, too. It’s rather fun and easy. I plan to make a doll’s blanket when I’ve made more granny squares. Crocheting is a good skill to learn because then you can make warm blankets and things. You don’t need many tools or much equipment to do it, which means you can easily take it places with you. I wanted the centre of the doll blanket to look like ladybug colours, and then with a white border.
Years ago, Mama tried to teach me how to knit, but I just couldn’t catch on. Then I learned how to crochet, and Mama showed me how to knit again, and I “got” it. Then I knitted a doll shawl. I wanted to make a scarf, but it turned out more like a shawl! I haven’t done much knitting yet, but it is also a handy skill because you can make lots of things and you can easily carry it around wherever you go, too. (above)
For my tenth birthday, Papa and Mama gave me a weaving loom set. I have made a purse with it already, and now I’m working on a scarf. (above)
I have also started learning to cross-stitch. This is the first thing I’ve been working on and it’s still not finished yet. (above)
So as you can see, there are many things you can do with skills such as sewing, crochet, hand-sewing, knitting, cross-stitch and weaving. I’m very thankful God has given me a mother who can teach me how to sew and learn other skills, too. I hope you are encouraged by what I have made so that you can make things yourself like that as well!
~ Miss Holly ~