As usual, this summer I will be teaching free embroidery classes to children, as a “community project.” I’m batting around ideas about what kind of projects would be good for relatively young children (9-11) and for children a little older (12-14).
Last summer, my children’s embroidery classes didn’t produce much in the way of finished projects. I taught them basic stitches, but we didn’t produce a “finished” piece.
They worked simple designs that they drew out by hand or that they traced onto the fabric using cookie cutters. The design above was a lesson on buttonhole wheels and fishbone stitch. You can see buttonhole stitch (technically, blanket stitch) as the grass, and a line of chain stitch underneath. They also incorporated stem stitch and French knots in this little practice piece. You can find other pictures of what they did last summer at Embroidery for Children: Small Projects.
But this is the thing: I think, when teaching children, it is good for them to enjoy the success of finishing “something.” A whole, completed project is better, I think, than many practice scraps (although the practice scraps are necessary, too!), especially when it comes to boosting confidence and awakening interest. It also teaches them the discipline of finishing what they start, which I think is good for any child to learn.
So I thought I’d ask the world-wide embroidery community for suggestions! What do you think would be a good idea for a project, and do you have any good links or resources that would be helpful as I plan this summer’s classes? Input would be greatly appreciated!! And you never know who else you may help – or what child may benefit!! Thanks heaps!