Sharing my love of Sewing with a new generation: I sew for Fun Blog Hop

Click below to watch the video!

I was so excited to learn about all of the fun sewing notions and tools created by Nancy’s Zieman. One of the last conversations I had with her in the summer of 2017 was about sharing sewing with her granddaughters. I shared with her my experiences teaching my kids, and it was really meaningful that she had such a passion to share sewing with the next generation.


It is my honor to use I Sew for Fun in my studio classroom. However, my inaugural use of these tools came about in a spur of the moment sewing project that my son came up with. I had planned to teach him the toy sleeping bag. Instead, He proclaimed that he wanted to make a “Long Sleeve Sweatshirt”. Who am I to argue with creativity?


He grabbed a bolt of my fabric and with little guidance, he proceeded to make a shirt. Mom, helped a very little bit, but he really enjoyed the new notions that are super kid-friendly. I thought rather than talk about all the tools, I would show you some of them in action and the successful results.


My 18-year-old niece even got in on the action and really loved the marking pen and hem gauge. I Sew for Fun is for EVERYONE! (and cool to teenagers!)

Joi teaching kids to sew at Designer Joi’s Sewing Factory Onsite classroom in Sioux City, Iowa
I have always allowed my kids to “play” in my studio. This is photo of my daughter standing on my cutting table draping many years ago.

I have fond memories of going to my grandma’s when I was young, playing with her sewing tools in the attic, and looking at her sewing catalogs. I remember being inspired by the projects and instructions. I have always thought it is so cool that you can take fabric and make things, and that there are many ways to do something. I have never let that mindset fade. I embrace it every day. I guess in a small way I am a sewing kid at heart.


I love teaching kids to sew. I taught my first sewing class when I was 14 years old to youth in my local 4-H club and have taught classes to kids ever since. Sharing my love of sewing with kids is so rewarding. Kids are not worried about being perfect and they jump right in without limiting themselves. They love creating, and they genuinely have joy and satisfaction with whatever the result. I mean just look at their faces when they are done with a project!  I firmly believe that teaching kids how to sew is less about perfection and more about a fun experience. Develop the love and the skills will follow.

Sam had a clear idea of what he wanted to make. He said it was a long sleeve sweatshirt. I love that he sketched out his idea.
Mom traced the pattern out on the double knit fabric, but sam used the marking pen to trace his stitching lines.
Cutting was lots of fun because he was holding those sheers all different directions, and the edges were very jagged. Mom did NOT say a word and he had a blast.
Let’s hold up the pattern to see how it looks.
Sam loved using the wonder clips and large pins to hold the fabric together. He grasped the order of sewing operations on the Baby Lock Crescendo quickly.
Sam had lots of fun trying on his shirt along the way.
Success! This was just what he wanted. Sam has worn this so many times and he PROUDLY told everyone including grandma’s, teachers and friends that he indeed made this shirt himself. He was also taking orders at school for making shirts for his friends LOL!
The day this shirt project happened I was actually tutoring my niece on a Doctor Who costume dress. I was teaching her to use the I Sew for Fun notions which she really liked. She thought they were cool looking.

More extended videos and sewing from Sammy’s I Sew for Fun day will be coming in the future. Check back for all the inside scoop and the hilarious video of how to measure your own body for sewing- a kids point of view!


View the complete I Sew For Fun (ISFF) product lineup at


Watch the New I Sew For Fun TV Show at In this 26 minute episode of Sewing With Nancy, Nancy shares her team sewing experience and valuable tips for sewing with the youth in your life:

Follow the entire I Sew for Fun Blog Hop at:

This blog is a part of the I Sew for Fun Blog Hop sponsored by Nancy’s Notions, Clover, DIME and Martingale.


  • Mary Silverman

    08.02.2018 at 15:22

    Looking forward to sewing with my 7 yr. old granddaughter!

  • Vicki Terpstra

    08.02.2018 at 16:32

    Your son is adorable. Loved the video. I am excited to be able to teach my youngest granddaughter to sew using Nancy’s products. I absolutely love the safety foot myself.

  • Pam Murphy

    08.02.2018 at 19:34

    I love that kids are so free with their creativity and don’t let their limits get in the way of a challenging project! The sweatshirt looks great…I bet you are very proud and so you should be.

    • joi

      09.02.2018 at 20:47

      It was so much fun and he had his mind set on sewing a long sleeve sweatshirt LOL. I can’t wait to share the measuring video

  • Angela J Short

    09.02.2018 at 04:03

    Really cool projects and notions. Thank you for sharing. Have a great day! angielovesgary2 atgmail dotcom

  • Kay Huff

    09.02.2018 at 20:44

    Absolutely love this and tell Sam, Awesome job.

    • joi

      09.02.2018 at 20:46

      thanks. Wait for the measuring video LOL!

  • Elizabeth Horowitz

    09.02.2018 at 20:54

    What a cool shirt. I am looking forward to sewing with my granddaughters.

  • Pam Murphy

    10.02.2018 at 00:34

    I love his sweatshirt! He looks so proud! We sewers have a responsibility to teach our kids and grandkids to be creative and accomplished! Nancy’s book is a great start.

  • Mehera Ortiz

    10.02.2018 at 01:11

    I enjoy teaching my children to sew. They are so proud when they finish a project.

  • Liz Ortiz

    10.02.2018 at 06:16

    This is one more wonderful gift Nancy has share with us, I love the idea of passing the love for this craft onto young people, with the right notions ( very cool looking by the way) and some patience there are plenty of memories on the making. I too, rember going to my grandma’s and learning a thing or two about sewing, she was my early mentor. I hope to be able to pass this onto my niece, thanks for sharing!

  • Donna Fecteau

    12.02.2018 at 20:24

    loved the video! I wish this book was available when my children and grandchildren were little.

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