Friday, 27 April 2018

Learning to Stitch : Five benefits of sewing

An example of layering stitching combined with initials
This week I taught a class of elementary students how to stitch. The students ranged from 5 - 12 years old, and for many this was their first experience of sewing.

There are many reasons why sewing is beneficial....

Pockets designed to hold sticks

1. Hand Eye Coordination 
Sewing with a needle and thread requires coordination, and is a great way for little fingers to learn that fingers help us feel and see. Practicing these skills keeps our brain as nimble as our fingers. 

2. Sewing is Creating
Choosing the colour of material and thread is an act of creativity and it is delightful to see the colour combinations chosen. Getting creative by making these choices means we are engaging our brains in creative thought which is great for the mind. It also assists with boosting our confidence as we learn to trust our choices.

3. Environmental Impact 
Learning to sew on buttons or repair holes saves clothes from being thrown away. According to the Huffington Post a devastating 85% of our clothing ends up in landfill. By lovingly repairing our own clothes we are more likely to continue to wear them and cherish them for longer.  

4. Emotional Wellbeing
Sewing can be therapeutic, which leads to being calmer, happier and relaxed. It encourages a state of mindfulness, awareness or meditation. 

5. A Sense of Accomplishment
The best reason for learning to sew is the sense of accomplishment that comes from creating something handmade. 

Layers of colour

Tree embellishment on pocket : work in progress

Even the teachers got involved and commented on
the meditative qualities of stitching

These days our lives are so busy I feel that it is such a treat to be able to sit still and sew,  listening to the sound of the thread as itpasses through the fabric, feeling the textures on my fingers whilst letting my mind drift. The humble act of sewing and repairing is becoming a sought after experience - and can be a meditation retreat in our own home! 

These are just some of the benefits sewing can offer that I can think of - and I'd love to hear from you too. What are the benefits of sewing that you have recognized on how it can impact positively on your life? Leave a comment below and let me know. 

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