Determining What to Sew for Beginners - a tutorial by The Sewing Korner

Contrary to what many people believe, determining what to sew for beginners doesn’t have to be a difficult decision. In fact, if you want to start out slow to improve your skills, there are numerous projects you can work on that produce exciting results.

  • Keychain Attachment
  • Large Baby Receiving Blanket
  • Easy Pillowcase
  • Holders for Sunglasses

Most beginning sewing projects involve square-shaped or rectangle-shaped objects such as purses or blankets, which are super-easy to make. Below we go into more depth on the above mentioned projects.

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    Keychain Attachment

    This is a super-simple project often included in a list of what to sew for beginners because it uses very little fabric and only a few stitching points.

    People use this attachment to carry Chapstick around and other small items, and it only takes a few supplies to complete it. In fact, it is the perfect project to choose if you have pieces of leftover fabric that you’re not sure what to do with.

    Take a piece of material that is 3.5” x 9” in size and fold it in half lengthwise, then sew it along the edge of the length of the fabric. As it’s right-side out, fold up one end about ½” and secure with a seam. Fold over again and do the same.

    Turn it over on the other side and fold a flap that reaches roughly two inches from the top. Sew just the two long edges so that you create a pocket on the fabric. Next, make a hem on the other side to create a way to attach a keyring to it.

    Secure the keyring to the top portion of the fabric and use the pocket to hold your Chapstick!

    Large Baby Receiving Blanket

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    Receiving blankets for babies are usually made out of flannel material, and you’ll need two pieces of flannel cut into one-yard pieces. To make it more interesting, you can choose two flannel pieces with two different patterns and colors!

    First, you have to wash your flannel because this type of fabric shrinks. Wash it in the washing machine and dry it on high heat so that most of the shrinkage will occur. This helps the blanket “fit” better once you start to work on it.

    Place the pieces on top of one another and pin the blanket so it stays together. If your pieces have a blank side, make sure that side is showing. Next, sew the pieces all the way around except for a six-inch section that will be left unsewn.

    Clip the corners of the fabric so the blanket doesn’t bunch up once you turn it right-side out. After turning it right-side out, flatten the blankets, which are now one blanket, and iron them so they’re nice and smooth.

    Finally, sew up the six-inch space very close to the edge of the blanket so that the blanket is now without holes. If you like, you can sew some decorative ribbons around the blanket on all four sides, but that isn’t necessary for it to look good.

    Blankets are basically large squares that you sew up and decorate, and this is a great project for beginning seamstresses. In fact, you can make most baby blankets in 30 minutes or less!

    Determining What to Sew for Beginners: Additional Projects

    Easy Pillowcase

    Just like baby blankets, pillowcases are simply rectangle-shaped pieces of fabric sewn together, so they make a great project for beginning seamstresses. When sewing, always start by washing and drying the fabric you’re planning to use.

    You’ll need 1 to 1 ½ yards of material, depending on the type of fabric you choose.

    Take two pieces of the same fabric and hem them all the way around so the piece is hemmed properly. Place them together wrong-side out. Sew them on three sides, leaving one of the “short” sides open and unsewn.

    If you’re curious about the size of the pillowcase, most of them run 28” x 40” in size, so that’s what you should aim for.

    When you’re done sewing the pieces together, you can always choose to make the pillowcase more decorative by adding ribbons or decorative appliques, especially if it is intended for a child.

    Pillowcases are exceptionally easy to sew and work great for most types of fabric. Try using cotton, flannel, or even satin for an extra-luxurious look, and don’t forget to wash and dry the fabric before you start to sew.

    Holders for Sunglasses

    Easy to make and very functional, you can choose any type of colorful fabric for this sunglasses case! Start with a piece of fabric that is 7.75” x 9.5” in size, and make sure you have 16 inches of ribbon or bias tape.

    Take the fabric and fold it in half lengthwise with the right sides together. On the side with the raw edges, mark two points with pins: 1.5” and 2” from the top. When you look at the section between the markings, that’s where the drawstring opening will go.

    Start at the top edge and stitch until you get to the first marking, then stitch backward a bit and cut the thread. Do the same thing with the other side until you get to the second marking. Pivot when you get to the corner and stitch until you get to the folded edge. Don’t forget to backstitch and cut your thread.

    Next, press your seams open and fold the top edge down 1.5 inches, then press. Fold the edge in ½” and press again, then topstitch the casing in place. Make sure you stitch about one inch from the top and close to the folded edge.

    Place a safety pin on the edge of your ribbon and run it through the casing. This is your drawstring. If you prefer, you can knot the edges of the ribbon when you’re done.

    If you turn your eyeglasses case right-side out at this point, it should be ready for you to use. Clip off any remaining pieces of thread that may be protruding from the fabric.

    Try going wacky and wild with your case and use brightly colored, very graphic pieces of fabric to make it even more eye-catching and noticeable!

    Video: Some Additional Sewing Projects for Beginners

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