Here is a super fun craft project that will get your kids excited about sewing! My kids love buttons. If you've ever been down the button isle of Michaels or Joanns you've seen that buttons are the new sticker! They have them in every shape and size. Your kids will get super excited about picking out buttons for their own sewing project!
Recommended for ages 4 and above. Never leave your child unattended with a sharp needle!
Get your supplies. I recommend taking a trip to Michaels or Joanns with your kids and letting them pick their own buttons, felt colors and even a spool of thread. This gives them ownership in the project. If you have a sewing kit with lots of this stuff already laying around let them pick from there.
Pick a safe spot to work. I recommend working at the dinner table, it's less likely that they will poke themselves and it's a little easier to control what's going on up there. Show your child how sharp a sewing needle is. Let them lightly touch the tip. Also if you have very sharp cutting scissors, you may want to tell them that you will do all the cutting. A small pair of kids scissors could be used to cut the thread. Depending on the age of your child (under 5) you will need to thread and tie the needle for them. Definitely show them how to do this, and if they would like to try, you could let them.
Set up the work station before your kids sit down. I did this project with both my kids at the same time (ages 2.5 and 4). I don't recommend trying to do this with a 2 year old, especially if you have more than one child, it is hard to manage more than one child, especially when one of them is 2. If I had it to do over again I would have done it with each child separately. I had everything ready to go for my kids, needles threaded and tied and felt cut in half and on the table. I had a pair of kid scissors out, because my son loves cutting more than anything.
Have your child pick a button and show you where they want it on the felt. Begin by showing them how to start the needle on the back of the felt and work it through a hole, then back through another hole. Please note that simple buttons with two or four holes are the best, the fancy ones with the single loop on the back are a challenge for kids. Let them take over when they want to. Keep your eye on them, they will get confused about where to send the thread. They will probably at some point make the thread go around the outside of the felt and across the button. Felt is great, because you can usually reverse the needle back out for them to try again.
Repeat until they have as many buttons as they want. It's pretty fun watching your kids trying to figure out this sewing thing! It was amazing for me when I saw that even my two year old could be trusted with a needle. If you are worried that your child is too young for this, instead of sewing buttons on you could just let your child practice sewing, then move up to buttons!
You could stop there or go on. I found it fun to cut out simple shapes for my son and having him "button" them on the top. If you feel like your child is too young for sewing, you could make this yourself for them and it would be a fun way for them to practice their colors, shapes and buttoning. My daughter decided she wanted to make a picture frame out of hers, I will post a pic when we complete it!
This project is a great way to work on fine motor skills while the kids build a toy they can play with again in the future. The buttoned felt can be a fun decoration in their room along with being something they are proud of!
Sewing is such a nostalgic activity for me. It brings back many memories of watching and helping my mom sew when I was a little girl! It is an important skill that I think all kids should learn!