When I first announced the project to the kids, they were up for it but slightly creatively challenged. Most of their ideas centered around making things from cardboard boxes. Figuring no one fork over a dollar, even at a Kid's Craft Bazaar, for anything made from a cardboard box, I suggested that maybe it was time for the oldest two to learn how to use the sewing machine.
Luckily for me, I had just had the opportunity to make Christmas stockings for a prison ministry with the lovely ladies in my prayer group which is where this stocking pattern came from.
As you can see in the picture above, you'll need to draw and cut out a simple stocking pattern out of large plain paper. Remember that once sewn, your stocking will be slightly smaller so allow for that in your pattern.
Have your children fold the fabric in half (right sides together) and trace the pattern onto the fabric.
Once the pattern is traced, they can cut it out. Since the fabric is folded, they will be cutting both sides of the stocking at once.
H4 isn't quite proficient with scissors yet, but she was able to help by pinning the stockings together once they were cut. (Remember right sides together!)
Both G8 and A7 were able to operate the sewing machine very well. A7 did most of the sewing, though.
This is a great first sewing project, because the next step is to simply sew from one top corner of the stocking, down and around the foot, and straight up to the next top corner. (Leave the top open.)
Notice in the picture above that I just instructed the kids to keep the outside edge of the fabric aligned with edge of the foot to make sure they were sewing straight. You'll definitely want to sit right next to them if it is their first time with the sewing machine and expect mistakes. Remind them that practice makes perfect!
Unfortunately I didn't take pictures of the next step, it was pretty simple.
First you want to show the kids how to turn the stockings right side out. Then they will need to turn the top edge inside about a half an inch so that it can be hemmed. But first it must be ironed! G8 was really good with the iron and we didn't even need to pin the fabric in place to hem the top.
Once they've sewn just far enough to pass the loop, instruct your child to sew backwards to lock it into place. Then choose a pretty lace as a border and secure it under the foot as well. They will need to make sure that they continue to line the lace along the edge as they sew it on and hem the top of the stocking all at once. Once they make it all of the way around they will finish by overlapping and turning the lace under slightly.
Here are the kid's finished stockings! Pin It Now!