I have been on a kit making kick lately. I love that Mermaid is getting big enough that I can buy the kits for kids and we can work on them together.
We found the Stitch and Style Pouches kit at our local hobby shop and she fell in love with the images on the front. She is convinced that I am going to make each one on the picture for her and she will switch them out once a week on her book bag. You know because she is the only person in the world I craft for and I have all that free time on my hands.
At any rate we purchased the kit and brought it home. Yesterday while she was home from school for Veteran’s Day (thank you to all of my fellow Veterans) we opened it and got to work.
I love this kit. It has everything you need to get started making the little pouches right away. Well everything but scissors. Needles, embroidery floss and felt sheets in several colors, precut eyes & noses, templates, even the buttons were in the box.
The best part about the kit is the book. I would honestly buy the book without the kit if it came that way. There are detailed instructions that are clear enough for a kid to follow on their own for every step of the projects. They cover how to trace and cut the pieces, what order to sew them on in, and how to finish each type of project.
There are a two main types of pouches to choose from – the fold over (it is open on top with a piece that folds over and buttons in place, and the zippered pouch (both a top zip and a side zip). We did one of each and they are both easy.
If you want to get one for yourself this is my Amazon affiliate link (it won’t change your price but will support my crafting habit!)
If this will be your first time sewing (or your kids) felt pieces like this together then I suggest using a water soluble glue of some kind. Think a kid’s glue stick. For example you could rub the little premade eye on the glue then place it on the body of the pouch. This way you can figure out exactly where to place everything so your finished face doesn’t look wonky, and you are not going crazy trying to hold small pieces in place while sewing them on.
Make sure to group your templates when you cut them out. Don’t overlap or share a cut line but make them as close as you can. That way you get more out of each square.
When you trace the templates on to the felt use a disappearing or dissolvable marker. If you use a sharpie it might bleed into the felt and you will have to cut extra off to get rid of it. A regular ball point pen worked for some of the pieces but it was hard to get enough ink onto the felt to make it worth it.
This one is more of a statement. The quality of the felt is perfect for making some fun things with your kid. If you plan to use the book / templates to make some pouches to sell at your next art market you will need some higher end felt.
I made two projects in one afternoon with Mermaid. One is the kitten pouch with the foldover top that buttons on her nose and the other is the llama that zips on the bottom. Mermaid has plans for a donut, a yeti, and a sheep.
The fold over cat head was easy. You just cut out the pieces sew everything to the face, then sew the back to the front. The zipper on the llama was a little more difficult because you have to line up the zipper and trim the edges.
The only thing I would change in the instructions has to do with the zipper. Instead of cutting off the zipper end like it says and doing a whip stitch to keep the zipper pull in place. Your kid is going to pull to hard at some point and the pull will go through those stitches. Then you have a puppet not a pouch. Ask me how I know this. Go ahead and ask. Instead of cutting the end off line up the sides of your pouch so you can tuck it inside and out of the way.
MORE THINGS TO DO WITH IT
Once you have the kit and made all the pouches you could possibly want there are a few things you can do with the templates. You can make them using any fabric and they would make cute pin cushions, sachets, or even pet toys. You could make just the faces and front part of the pouch, then applique them to things – the bottom of a jean jacket, a canvas tote, or a kitchen towel.
Go crazy and have fun with it, because we will be!