Smootch's scrappy projects

Anyone who spends any time with a preschooler knows they are endless sources of ideas. Smootch can not make it from one end of a room to another without picking up some random object and using it in a novel way. Or taking something apart. Or asking two billion questions. It's both inspiring and exhausting.

Everything that I can say about my basic household gear being fodder for Smootch's imagination and crafts (don't talk to me of white glue and pasta strainers), my sewing scraps are doubly so. The little bucket that catches the serger cut offs is a gold mine as far as Smootch is concerned (flowers made by sticking fabric scraps onto a straight pin). Other cast offs are tied into complicated costumery for her dolls (sort of like a toga party got caught up in a tornado) and if she ever manages to get inside the ribbon box... well, let's just say that I keep my good ribbons up high on a shelf next to the medicines.

Smootch, today, strolling through the disaster that was my sewing room that I am now trying to de-stash (sobbing sounds - this is incredibly difficult!) and found just a rectangle of purple ribbing. "Mama," she asks - has been taught to under pain of time out until she's 30 to always ask first - "Can I have this?" Which, of course, she could. Then she did something that surprised me. She asked if she could actually sew with the material. Not just with my sewing machines (which is still a 'no' I'm afraid) or the stitch witch she thinks is somewhere in the house but I'm sure it isn't (long standing argument). She wants to handsew! Yay!

Last solstice I made her up a little sewing kit and needle book.

She's done a bit of hand sewing but often get bored and asks me to finish projects for her. Generally, she's not that interested. But I keep the kit handy just in case. And today was a case!

So, Smootch's ribbing scrap turn cuff:

Smootch did all the sewing herself, even threading the needle, something that used to reduce her to tears if she tried before. It's funny how much kids can do when they take a break from something and let their development catch up to their motivation. Another argument for better late than early, I suppose.

And there it is, in ten minutes, a sweet little purple cuff that any kid going through a fashion-deconstructed phase would love. Smootch is incredibly proud of herself. It's the first thing that she has been able to wear that was completely designed and assembled by her own self, no mama involved. Once she figures out how to gather, I'm probably out of a job :D


  1. That is just awesome!! Well done to your little one! I have been trying to think of how I can get my 3yo involved with sewing and would love to know what you put in the little sewing kit please :)

  2. cute! Good job to lil smootch. My sweet Petite made a teensey purse today all by herself from my scraps. she is pretty proud of herself. I let her practise sewing using the machine with no needle, to start getting the feel for it, and working on straight lines. She loves that. but yes, the hand sewing actually accomplishes something besides just practise. ;-)

  3. Mel,
    The beginners sewing kit was the needle book with two straight pins and two embroidery size needles, and a small pair of good scissors, and a bobbin of top stitching thread (which is thicker and easier to handle than regular thread).

  4. That is so nice, I love following your blog and it's nice that your little girl is developing her creative skills so well. I hope to give my boy and girl a healthy dose of craft love as they grow up. My 2yo already love to cut with some safety scissors while I am doing the same, he even has an old shoe box filled with off cuts. Thanks for a great blog

  5. That is too cute! I love it. Eagerly waiting for my boys to show a bit more interest. But, they did finish sewing the puppets we made, so that is good. They were determined little guys.