CBMS Choice-Based Art Studio

CBMS Choice-Based Art Studio
CBMS Choice-Based Art Studio

Monday, January 26, 2015

Sewing in the Studio

We have two sewing machines in the studio. I am happy to show students how to thread them, how to sew a seam and make a corner – how to back stitch. I teach about sewing “right sides together” so that the seam is hidden inside. And that's about it. In the context of a busy art studio, I can't really teach sewing lessons (how to put in a zipper, how to set a sleeve) – this would take too much of my attention away from everyone else. 
This 8th grader taught herself to design & sew clothes. She doesn't follow written directions, but instead researches & cuts her own patterns.

"L" wore the dress she made yesterday to school today!

Students use the sewing machine to craft simple objects (pillows and their many “art-pillow” variations, for instance), and those with more advanced sewing skills use them for fashion design or other sewing projects, like quilt-making, perhaps. 
Day-Night Bear
By "L," grade 7, made as a gift to replicate a childhood toy belonging to her mother
Designing stuffed animals is a favorite choice. We've also used the sewing machine to bind books and to add texture to small drawings.
One from a series of Hogwarts Pillows

Sometimes a student learn to use the machine here in the studio, and then go home and dig out their family's old machine. Others have asked for a sewing machine for a special gift at Christmas or birthday time.

 In this day and age when more and more attention is diverted by screen-time, it is rewarding to observe students drawn to this traditional, versatile technology.