I started teaching my niece to sew when she was just shy of 6 years old. I had a very difficult time finding sewing projects for kids and activities to help me teach her the basics. The classes in our area are insufficient, to say the least. Kids classes aren’t teaching foundation skills and because adult classes are taught lecture style they end up boring her. Now that she is 10 she knows more than a beginner but she still doesn’t have a solid foundation. I recently had the opportunity to review the Learn How-to-Sew series for Kids by Katrina Marie Designs and it is leaps and bounds above what we’ve experienced in the past.
Top impression from my ten year old niece: “It’s easy!” She also noticed that Katrina Marie has a lot of pink in her videos. Even her sewing machine is pink! Everything in the first DVD was pink, down to the rulers and magnetic pin cushion. The second DVD had a purple theme so we were curious to see if everything was purple. The pink sewing machine and notions were still there but all of the fabric and everything Katrina Marie wore was purple. It was fun to notice this little bit of continuity. My niece is curious to see if Katrina Marie color coordinates for the rest of the series.
My niece preferred the projects on this DVD over using a pattern from the store for a few reasons. First of all, she was glad to not have to deal with pages and pages of tissue paper. She said that’s her least favorite part of using a pattern. She was also thrilled that she didn’t “need to go read stuff for a half an hour.” The videos are quick and easy to follow.
I like the way Katrina Marie narrates as she is demonstrating. Not only are the camera angles extremely well thought out but the techniques are illustrated in a very simple manner. This is extremely important to me since I was looking for a way that my niece could develop foundation skills. While my niece has sewn accessories and even clothing before, it’s easy for me to forget to point out some of the basics that are second nature to someone who has been sewing for a while. However, while watching the videos my niece quickly picked up on key aspects of sewing corners. She had never learned to pivot nor did she know about trimming corners. Because Katrina Marie was narrating as she progressed through each and every step, it was easy for my niece to catch on. Then, as we worked on the project ourselves, my niece told me what we needed to do. Katrina Marie’s instructions were so simple and easy to follow that my 10 year old niece was basically able to memorize several sewing projects for kids. She’ll be able to make homemade gifts for family and friends for years to come!
A Collection of Sewing Projects for Kids
The series is made up of seven different project DVDs and two separate DVDs about sewing doll clothes. Each of the DVDs in the original seven part series is named after a different pixie – Candy, Mandy, Pandy, Sandy, Tandy, Zandy, and Andy. I really like the fact that the pixies are not only multicultural but also inclusive of both genders. I think this shows that Katrina Marie Designs has a social conscience which is an important factor for me, personally. For my niece, it was fun looking over the different projects featured on the cover of each DVD. She’s already picked out a few to put on her Christmas list!
When asked if there was anything missing from the DVDs we tried or if anything could make them better my niece replied “If there were kitties!” I think it’s safe to say she was pretty satisfied and so was I.
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