Area Girl Scouts are threading needles and handling sewing machines nearly as confidently as they can text and video chat.
The obvious differences are that using electronics can seem effortless, while learning to sew requires practice, precision and being prepared for a few finger pokes from sharp needles.
“Sew Easy, Sew Fun” Day Camp showed about 20 Girl Scouts from July 13-17, how to sew a different project each day using materials to create pillowcases, tote bags, wallets, purses and other items.
“I think sewing is a really useful thing,” said Aline Jacobs, volunteer sewing instructor and former home economics teacher. “You may never sew a dress but you may learn how to hem a pair of pants. It’s a skill they’ll use for the rest of their lives.”
Campers also completed a service project by creating drawstring bags filled with trinkets for children at the Bishop Ott Center.
To keep projects simple, Jacobs, who has run the class for 16 years, said she pre-cuts an array of colorful fabrics that her campers can use.
Ainsly Woods, 10, was one of her eager sewing campers.
“I like making and creating things,” Ainsly said. “My favorite part is sewing on the machine. I feel like I’m in a different place. It’s just me and the machine.”
Jacobs teaches her students how to sew a straight seam, back stitch and practice precision using needles, pins, seam gauges and more. Campers were also responsible for some hand sewing and they had to iron their fabrics to press them into place.
“It’s very important to be accurate or it won’t work,” Jacobs told her class.
Breanna Taylor, 12, couldn’t get enough of sewing camp. For the third summer in a row, she attended the camp to pick up more sewing skills.
“I find it fun,” Breanna said, who sewed her first pair of shorts last summer. “Ms. Aline inspired me to keep sewing. My mom bought me a sewing machine for Christmas and I use it to make pillows as gifts.”
Delaney Poiencot, 10, said Jacobs encouraged her to continue sewing and her new interest in the craft convinced her grandmother to give her a sewing machine for her birthday.
“I love to sew. It’s my favorite thing,” Delaney said. Her least favorite part is getting stuck by her own needles, she said.
Even though Ana Victoria Isaac, 12, encountered a few hang-ups with her sewing machine on the second day of class, she refused to give up.
After she threaded her thread through the needle, turned on her sewing light and placed her foot on the machine pedal, the thread got tangled.
“It’s a lot of multitasking,” said Ana Victoria, who got some help from a fellow camper.
Ainsly said her choice for favorite hobby is simple.
“If I had to choose between electronics and sewing, I’d choose the sewing machine,” she said.