Kids Sewing Gift Guide: Sewing Machine

Tis the season for giving, and I suspect that many kids will have a sewing machine on their wish lists.  I thought I'd give a few tips on purchasing a sewing machine for the crafty kid in your life.

* Buy a real sewing machine!  Don't be seduced by a "kid's sewing machine" that is essentially a toy.  These machines aren't worth the $19.99 they cost and will just cause frustration.  Trust me, I've experienced many a melt down at camp with these machines.  Those little "mending" machines don't work either.

* Look for a machine with a drop in bobbin. These machines are MUCH easier for a kid to operate.

* Keep it simple.  Don't worry about all the bells and whistles for a first machine.  Just get your basic model that is simple to operate.

 What age for a sewing machine?  I got my daughter a machine for her sixth birthday.  Most machines say ages 7 and up.  You know your child.  If they understand the concept of sewing and have been hand sewing for awhile and are responsible, then a machine will help to expand their sewing skills and creativity.

If you purchase a machine for a young sewer, don't forget to add some cute fabric and a few spools of thread to get started!
So, what do we recommend here at Sewing School?  If you've been with us for awhile, you'll know my love of the Janome Sew Mini when sewing with kids.  From my experience, it's the best starter machine for kids.

*A real machine, but it sews slowly so it's safer for little hands.  Simple and easy - just what a new sewer needs!
*Great size, lightweight.  Easy to store and doesn't take up too much room.
*Nice price.  I always buy mine when they go on sale at Hancock's.
*Drop in bobbin and nice selection of stitches.
*Sews up little projects with ease.

* Doesn't last forever, which is fine if you only want it for a starter machine.
*No zipper foot.
*It's hard to sew through multiple layers of fabric or fleece.
*It's a starter machine.  This wouldn't be the machine I would recommend for an adult.

I hope this helps!  I've had so much fun machine sewing with kids while working on Sewing School 2.  A machine really opens up a world of possibilities for kids and sewing!

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