Purls of Wisdom

Sewing: The Perfect Individual or Group Activity

Posted by Libby Foxman on Tue, Sep 27, 2016 @ 11:00 AM

Sewing is a great skill to have whether you want to make your own toys or need to fix up ripped clothes. Depending on what project you are working on, sewing can be a fun group or individual activity. When it is being done as an individual activity, sewing is a great way to relax. The repetitive nature of sewing will give you the opportunity to de-stress from your busy life. However, when sewing with a group, it’s an opportune time to develop teamwork skills while also catching up with friends. Whether you are looking for some alone time to relax or time to catch up with old friends, sewing is the perfect activity.

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Benefits of Sewing As An Individual Activity

            Sewing is a fun activity to do when you are in need of some quiet time. Since there are not many supplies required for hand or machine sewing, it will be easy to gather what you need and find an empty space to work. The alone time you will have while working on your project will give you the opportunity to de-stress from school, work, or personal relationships. Another benefit of sewing by yourself is that you are the only person responsible for the project. You don’t have to worry about working at the same level as an expert sewer; rather you can work at your own level and pace. You also get to pick what you want the project to be. This way you can tailor the project so that it fits your interests, whether that is your favorite colors, movies, or sports. Hand or machine sewing on your own is a great opportunity to further develop your skills, make something that shows your interests, and clear your mind.

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Benefits of Sewing As A Group Activity

            Sewing can also be the perfect time to catch up with friends. Whether you are each working on your own project or are doing a project together, the repetitive motions of sewing will allow you to complete your projects while also holding a conversation. You can get together with a group of friends to make another a gift, such as a blanket or bag. Participating in a sewing group is also a great way to give back to your community. Your group can make hats for cancer patients or blankets for a homeless shelter. Both of these places will regularly be accepting donations. Look online to find a local hospital or homeless shelter and contact them to find out where you can drop off your projects.

Check out this website to find a sewing group in your area!

If you think you or your child would be interested in learning to sew, The Handwork Studio offers classes for children ages 5-16 through out the year. They also invite adults to inquire about private lessons for themselves or their children. Visit their website or call (610) 660-9600 for more information.

Tags: handwork classes begin, Machine Sewing, machine sewing classes begin, Sewing, The Handwork Studio

Handwork skills can help you make a thoughtful homemade gift

Posted by Libby Foxman on Tue, Sep 20, 2016 @ 11:00 AM

There are many benefits to learning handwork skills, such as hand and machine sewing, knitting, and feltings. Besides the more obvious uses of handwork skills, such as making and altering your own clothes, it is also a great way to make thoughtful homemade gifts for your friends and family.

 

It takes time and patience

            Its easy to go to the mall to buy someone a present and even easier to just get a gift card but the time and patience you put into making your handwork gift will make whoever you are giving it to that much more appreciative. This gift is actually a piece of you. Time is the most precious thing we have and by making something, we are showing that we care. It also shows that you really know what they will like. You can tailor your handwork craft so that it matches their interests. Patience is a very important, life-long skill that can be developed through handwork skills. Making someone a gift through handwork crafts is a great way to practice this skill. You want their gift to look as nice and neat as it can, so you need to take your time. By being patient with the process and not rushing to get it finished, your gift will come out looking amazing!

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It’s Thoughtful

            It is always really nice to receive a personalized gift. It shows the person receiving it that you know them well. Show the person that you listen to them and are aware of the things they like by giving your gift a theme. If you know that their favorite movie is Frozen, you can decorate their gift with snowflakes and snowmen. If you are giving a gift to someone for a holiday, that makes it even easier to incorporate a theme. Gifts for Valentine’s Day can be covered in hearts and sweet messages to show how much you love them.

 

Here are a few ideas

            While there are so many handwork crafts you can make, here a few ideas to get you started.

            An Apron is a great Mother’s of Father’s Day gift. You can decorate it with needle-felted pockets, buttons, and more. It will show that you recognize and appreciate all that they do for you. You could even make a matching one to help them cook. Check out this video by The Handwork Studio on how you make one.

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            A Knitted hat is the perfect winter holiday gift. Whether it is for Christmas of Hanukah, you can decorate the hat with symbols of those holidays. You can also decorate in a winter theme, with snowflakes or snowmen. This is a very thoughtful gift during those cold winter months to keep someone else warm.

 

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            If you are interested in learning the skills used to make these gifts, The Handwork Studio, a kid’s needle arts, machine sewing, and fashion camp, offers classes in the summer and during the school year. Head to their website for more information and to register today. Also, if you want to see step-by-step videos of how to make great handwork projects, check out The Handwork Studio’s YouTube channel where our counselors walk you through many projects.

Tags: Kids Birthday Parties, Machine Sewing, Summer Camp, Sewing, Gifts

3 Unique Birthday Party Ideas

Posted by Libby Foxman on Tue, Sep 13, 2016 @ 11:00 AM

Birthday parties are exciting for everyone involved. For the birthday boy or girl, it is their special day when all of their closest family and friends will come together to celebrate them. For those invited, it’s a fun-filled day with friends, family, games, and dessert. To make your birthday party special, here are some unique ideas that will have everyone excited!

 

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Cooking Party

            Cooking is a very important skill to have as an adult. If you teach it in a fun way, such as a cooking-themed birthday party, kids will learn to love it! As the kids begin to arrive, you can set them up at a table with paper chef hats that they are able to decorate with markers or stickers. Once everyone has arrived, you can begin cooking the main meal. An easy thing to make is mini pizza. Give each child a small, rolled out piece of dough and put bowls of pizza sauce, cheese, and various toppings in the middle of the table. As those are cooking, you can set out cupcakes for the kids to decorate with frosting and other treats. Through this party, you’ll save yourself the hassle of buying food for the party, while also teaching the kids a great skill.

 

Gardening Party

            For a spring or summer baby, a gardening-themed birthday party is a great way to get kids outside and learning a useful skill. You can set them up at a table with a small pot, planting soil, and a variety of different types of flower seeds. Before they start planting the flower seeds, you can have them paint the pots with puffy paint or glue on jewels. This will allow everyone to put their own unique spin on the flower pots and it will make them easy for parents to identify at the end of the party. Be sure to give the party goers instructions on how to plant and take care of their plant but it wouldn’t hurt to give a written copy to the parents as well. To stick with the theme, have worms and dirt for dessert!

 

Handwork Party

            Handwork parties are great for anytime of year because, no matter the season, there is something to make. Whether you’re sewing, knitting, or weaving, the children can practice their handwork skills while also making a fun project with all of their friends! Before getting started, it will be important to talk the kids through the project, especially if they are working with sharp tools like needles. Once they understand the project, give the party goes enough supplies to make their projects unique. They will love seeing how everyone decorated their projects once they are done. A great birthday party handwork project is party hats. While this video from The Handwork Studio shows party hats for New Year’s, it is also perfect for a birthday celebration! Check out this How-To-Tuesday Video to see how to make it.

 

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            During the school year, The Handwork Studio offers customizable birthday parties. The birthday boy or girl can choose what project they want to make. These include a tote bag, a glamorize your doll dress, bed pockets, or clothes if they do a Fashion and Machine Sewing party. The Handwork Studio also offers embroidery kits, kumi himo kits, or knitting kits to be purchased as party favors. Head to The Handwork Studio’s website to request availability for your child’s birthday party.

Tags: crafts, Kids Birthday Parties, Sewing, The Handwork Studio, Handwork

3 ways handwork crafts can get your kid excited for the school year

Posted by Libby Foxman on Tue, Sep 06, 2016 @ 11:00 AM

The start of the school year is always a difficult adjustment. Going back to early mornings, especially as the weather gets colder, and homework is definitely not as fun as all of the cool activities children get to do during the summer. However, with these handwork crafts children will be excited and ready to start the school year!

 

Notebook cover:

            A lot of schools now include book covers on their list of required school supplies. Rather than spending money and buying one, it’s a very easy project for students to make their own! All that is needed is some fabric, a needle, and thread. If you are more advanced sewer, you can use a sewing machine instead of a needle and thread. With their notebooks or textbooks, students can open the book and the lay the fabric across it. They then should fold the fabric over to the inside covers of the book so that it looks like a pocket. Now that you have the shape of your book cover figured out, you can remove the book and get ready to sew. With the book cover laying flat on a table, fold the two sides of the shorter inside cover to the outside cover on both sides on the book cover and sew the sides together. Now that it is all sewed together you can put you book in it and are ready for school! This fun and easy project is a great way for students to get excited about the books the get to read during the school year. They can have fun with the fabrics they use and show off their handwork skills!

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Pencil Toppers:

            With every new school year comes a lot of writing. Whether it is for math homework or history or english essays, students can add some excitement to all the writing they have to do by making these fun pencil toppers! To get started, you will need a pencil, felt, a needle, and thread. Take the felt and cut two pieces of the same shape, like the shamrock below. These two pieces will be sewn together so that they fit over the pencil. To sew them together, you can place the two felt pieces on either side of the pencil and use a pen to mark the width of the pencil inside the felt. Remove the pencil and sew up one side, across the top, and then down the third side. Be sure to leave an opening at the bottom for the pencil to fit through! These pencil toppers are easy to make for holidays or just for fun! It will definitely add some excitement to your student’s school day!

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A new stuffed animal for show and tell:

            For young students, show and tell is often a highlight of their day; however, finding something new every week for them to bring to school can be difficult. A great way for students to practice their handwork skills while also making their show and tell project is to make a stuffed animal. Students will need two pieces of felt cut into the same shape of their favorite animal, some extra felt or fabric for decorating, a needle, thread, and stuffing. To get started, students can decorate one side of the felt of their stuffed animal. They can do this by sewing other pieces of felt, beads, or fabric directly onto the felt. Once they are happy with the decorations, place the two pieces of felt back to back and use the needle and thread to sew most of it together. Leave a wide enough gap so that they are able to get the stuffing inside the felt. Now that the stuffed animal is nice and fluffy, sew up the last side and now you have your own homemade stuffed animal! While this project will be great for show and tell to show off your handwork skills, it will also be loved a long time after that.

            The Handwork Studio is a kid’s needle arts, machine sewing, and fashion camp. In the summer we have 43 locations across 10 states up and down the east coast but we also continue classes, workshops, and birthday parties year round at our Narberth, PA location. If you think your child would be interested in learning to skills needed to make these projects, there is still time to register for classes starting in the fall.

Tags: crafts, Machine Sewing, Kids Camp, Sewing, school

Celebrate National Sewing Month

Posted by Libby Foxman on Tue, Aug 30, 2016 @ 11:00 AM

Celebrate National Sewing Month!

            September celebrates National Sewing Month and The Handwork Studio wants to help you celebrate! Since the sewing machine was invented in 1846, people have been able to make their own clothes, accessories, and home décor in a manner and speed that they had not been able to before. At The Handwork Studio, we teach kids how to use a sewing machine and the different projects you can make with it. To help you celebrate, we have complied videos from our How-To-Tuesdays to make your National Sewing Machine Month the best one yet!

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            Before you get started on any of your projects, it is very important to know how to use a sewing machine. We understand that it may be tricky if you are new to sewing, so Miss Alisha takes you step-by-step to show you how to thread your sewing machine. Once you have your machine threaded, it will be ready to go and you can start a project of your choice

 

            Since National Sewing Month is celebrated at the same time the school year starts, making school supplies is a great project. While the school probably provides a list of what students need for classes, you still need to find backpacks, gym shoes and clothes, and lunch boxes. To help you with this dilemma, The Handwork Studio shows you how to make your own reusable sandwich bag with a sewing machine. All that you need is a sewing machine and fabric. However, if your child wants, they can decorate the finished sandwich bag with jewels, buttons, or more fabric.

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            If your child is interested in celebrating National Sewing Month with The Handwork Studio, we offer classes beginning in September. Visit our website or call (610) 660 9600 for more information or to register now! We also have plenty of more projects for sewing machines on our YouTube page.

 

           

Tags: Machine Sewing, Sewing, The Handwork Studio

Sewing Classes For The Fashion Focused

Posted by Libby Foxman on Tue, Aug 23, 2016 @ 11:00 AM

Fostering creativity from a young age will help children find their passions early on. By discovering what they are interested in early on in their lives will give them time to explore this area and develop the skills needed for it. The fashion industry is a difficult one to get into, especially as a designer. The glitz and glamour of the fashion industry you see on reality TV is very different for real life. Anyone in the industry can tell you fashion is a tough business. Exposing your kids to what it really entails can give help them make the right college career choice. If you child has an interest in fashion, here are some things they should know.

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What Fashion sewing classes include

            A great place to get started is by learning the techniques needed to make your own designs. Whether this is sketching, sewing, or fabric draping, any fashion or sewing camp will teach you these skills. Sewing classes will give campers an introduction to everything they need to know about the skill. They will be taught both hand and machine sewing, how to thread a sewing machine, and the various kinds of stitches. This introduction will give campers the confidence to continue to use these techniques to help them pursue their interests.

           

Where you can find sewing classes

            It is easy to find these fashion oriented sewing classes wherever you are. During the summer months, many camps, both day camp and specialty camps, will offer instruction to their campers. Fabric stores also offer introductory classes through out the year.

 

Fashion Camp

After you’ve tried your hand at fashion classes, get a more in depth study at fashion camp. Camp will give you more time to explore fashion design in depth. Find a camp where your child can learn about inspirations, sketch a collection, learn about fabrics and tools of the trade, sew a collection, and put on a fashion show. Going to camp will also give them pieces for their college portfolios that will help them get into fashion school.

            The Handwork Studio is a kid’s needle arts, machine sewing, and fashion camp. During both the summer and school year, this camp offers Fashion and Machine Sewing and Fashion Boot Camp. Fashion and Machine Sewing is a great introduction to machine sewing for any camper. They will learn the basics of machine sewing, including how to set up the sewing machine and then how to piece together their own clothing. Fashion Boot Camp is a 3-week program that will teach campers how to put together their own collection through sketching, draping, sewing, and modeling. Both of these programs end their sessions with a fashion show. Campers are given the opportunity to show off what they have learned and their amazing designs.

 

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Lizzy Gee

            Before she became the head designer of Tres Lizzy, Lizzy Gee was a camper and counselor at The Handwork Studio. While there, she learned “the process of design and basic sewing skills.” She had taken Fashion Boot Camp four times, allowing her to discover her dream of creating clothing line. Lizzy began taking classes at The Handwork Studio when she was eight years old. Of her time there, she said, “The teachers were all very encouraging and gave me confidence I otherwise may have struggled to attain since no one in my family sewed or pursued anything in the arts. The studio helped me prove fashion design wasn't just a hobby for me.” Since her time at The Handwork Studio, Lizzy has attended the Pratt Institute, has been featured in over twelve shows, and has been a participant in Philadelphia Fashion Week. Lizzy has also designed clothes for celebrities, such as Jared Leto, Grimes, and Kyle Monaghan. Lizzy’s time at The Handwork Studio taught her not only “the basis of fashion design but how to love the sewing process, which for most is the toughest.”

 

If you child has an interest in the fashion industry or just wants to create their own designs for fun, The Handwork Studio offers Fashion and Machine Sewing and Fashion Boot Camp, as well as their other programs, year round. Go to their website or call (610) 660-9600 to get more information or register.

 

 

 

Tags: Machine Sewing, Fashion Camp, Sewing, Fashion, Fashion Bootcamp, Fashion & Machine Sewing, Fashion Design

Counselor Spotlight

Posted by Libby Foxman on Tue, Aug 16, 2016 @ 11:00 AM

The Handwork Studio employs creative and passionate people every year. These people are often artists, teachers, students, or anyone with an interest in helping children develop amazing handwork skills that kids will find useful in every aspect of their lives. Miss Caelie is a first year junior counselor but has been a part of The Handwork Studio family for many years.

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            Before Miss Caelie was a counselor at The Handwork Studio, she had been a camper for many years. Like many of the campers we have at The Handwork Studio, when she started, she did not have previous experience with any of the techniques. She is now a junior counselor, teaching all new and old campers how to sew, knit, weave, and more. She loves the sense of community that is present at The Handwork Studio. Everyone is supportive of one another and all hold similar passions.

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            At The Handwork Studio’s Narberth location, Miss Caelie assists the lead instructor, Miss Alyssa, at Handwork Day Camp. Handwork Day Camp is for children aged 5 to 12. At this program, campers get an introduction to hand and machine sewing, knitting, weaving, and wet felting. Miss Caelie’s favorite project at Handwork Day Camp is the stuffed owl. Campers cut out a stencil of an owl, stuff it, and hand sew it together. They also get to decorate their own project with needle felting. The introduction to these techniques will allow campers to successfully go onto The Handwork Studio’s other camps, including Fashion and Machine Sewing, Glamorize Your Doll, Sew Tech, and Fashion Boot Camp.

            When Miss Caelie is not at The Handwork Studio she loves acting and reading. Like the work done at The Handwork Studio, these two activities provide Miss Caelie with a creative and relaxing outlet. Miss Caelie is going to begin her sophomore year of college this fall where she is pursuing a degree in science. While she plans to get her PhD before settling into a career, she hopes to be a science teacher and thinks that her time working at The Handwork Studio will help her discover her teaching style and give her the confidence to continue on this career path. The campers at The Handwork Studio are very well supported by counselors, like Miss Caelie. They are constantly encouraging campers to challenge themselves and help them with whatever they need.
           If you are interested in The Handwork Studio as a place for your child to learn useful handwork skills from great counselors like Miss Caelie, head to our website to register.

Tags: Handwork Day Camp, Summer Camp, Sewing, Knitting, The Handwork Studio, miss caelie

How skills learned at summer camp can be applied during the school year

Posted by Libby Foxman on Tue, Aug 09, 2016 @ 11:00 AM

It is important to not lose the skills learned at summer camp during the school year. Similar to how students are required to do summer work so that they do not forget their math or reading skills, it is also important to keep practicing summer camp skills during the school year. The easiest way to do this is to incorporate it into your weekly activities. Use these tips to continue practicing all of your skills from summer!

 

Take a break from homework and go outside to practice sports:

            Whether your camper attended a sports camp where they got an introduction to many different sports or it was specialty one where they really developed their skills, encourage them to get outside and practice after school. Taking a break from homework, especially when it is getting overwhelming, is the perfect time to get some fresh air and practice the new techniques you learned at sports camp. Not only will the fresh air have you feeling refreshed when you go back inside, but you will have the chance to practice the skills you learned at summer camp. As they say, practice makes perfect. By continually practicing anything, you will only get better at it.

 

Practice handwork and art skills by decorating your school supplies:

            Lets be honest, most notebooks and binders students have to get for school are pretty boring and you can bet that at least one other student has the same one. A great way to make your school supplies unique while also practicing art skills is to decorate them! You can decorate your notebooks or binders with puffy paint or stamps, creating fun designs so that it is easily recognizable. Decorate your backpack or pencil case by sewing on patchwork or sewing on fun designs. This is a sure way to liven up the school day. Practicing these skills from art camp will allow you to become even better at them and make your school supplies stand out.

 

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Enroll in after school classes:

            Why should camp only be for the summer? Year round camps are a great way to continue practicing the skills you learned at summer camp during the school year. By working with knowledgeable instructors, students will be able to really hone the skills they learned during summer camp. It is also a great way to stay in contact with friends met at summer camp. Like year round art camps, a great way for those who attended sports camp to continue to develop their skills, is to sign them up for an intermural year round team. They will get to practice every week and make new friends.

 

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            The Handwork Studio is a kid’s needle arts, machine sewing, and fashion camp. During the summer they have locations in 10 states but during the school year, they offer spring break and winter break camps, as well as classes, workshops and birthday parties at the Narberth, PA location. The Handwork Studio offers classes year round so that their students can turn handwork skills in to a passion, not just a summer hobby.

 

            If you think your child would be interested in year round classes with The Handwork Studio, visit their website or call 610-660-9600 for more information.

Tags: handwork classes begin, kids art classes in narberth pennsylvania, Machine Sewing, Workshops, machine sewing classes begin, knitting classes begin, Classes, Summer Camp, Sewing, The Handwork Studio, school

Why summer camp is the perfect place for kids to discover their true passions

Posted by Libby Foxman on Tue, Aug 02, 2016 @ 11:00 AM

It is typical of children to have a new interest every week. They are constantly exposed to new and exciting things. However, it is also during this period that a lot of children find their true passions. At summer camps, children are exposed to a lot of new activities where they are constantly learning things, which make it a great place to discover what they are truly passionate about.

 

They Will Try Many New Things

            At any type of summer camp, whether it is a sleep away camp, day camp, or specialty camp, campers will constantly be exposed to new things. This can include sports, arts, theatre, and even people. The exposure to new activities and people will allow young campers to learn about things that they haven’t before. As they see their new friends at camp trying the new activities, they will be encouraged to do the same. Hopefully one of the new activities will become a life long passion for a camper.

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Creative and fun environment

            Summer camp is supposed to be a fun and stress free environment. This atmosphere allows children to try new things without having to worry about being tested on it. The fresh, exciting atmosphere of summer camp will encourage children’s creativity so that they are able to really explore all of the new things they are participating in. In this creative and supportive environment, campers may experience a new excitement for any activity they try. This environment won’t make children feel self-conscious when they are trying something that they don’t know how to do. Instead, both counselors and campers will support them in the new activity by providing guidance and encouragement.

 

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They are out of their comfort zone

            Great things can happen when a person ventures outside their comfort zone. For a lot of young children, going to camp is one of the first times they are away from home. They are in a new setting with new people participating in new activities. For these reasons, summer camp is a great place to do things you are not accustomed to doing. Whether it is trying out for the camp play or playing a new sport, campers are required to do something where they are not comfortable. While this may be scary at first, once they decide to try, they may find that they love it.

 

            At The Handwork Studio, campers are taught new skills and are given the chance to create their own handmade projects to bring home. These skills can give them a great introduction into needle art, machine sewing, and fashion. If you think your child would be interested in any of The Handwork Studio’s programs, visit our website or call 610-660-9600 to get more information.

Tags: Machine Sewing, Summer Camp, Kids Camp, Fashion, The Handwork Studio, Sewing Machine

Art Camp Helps Develop Life Long Skills

Posted by Libby Foxman on Tue, Jul 26, 2016 @ 11:00 AM

            People of all skill levels can attend art camp. There are entry-level introduction camps and camps for experienced artists. Whether your camper is new or experienced, they will see the benefits regardless. While art camps are a great place to hone your skills, whether it’s in painting, sewing, or pottery, it is also a great place to develop life long skills outside of the studio. Campers will learn practical skills, test their patience, and learn to appreciate different perspectives.

 

Practical Skills

            Art camp is a great place to practice and improve your skills but the techniques you learn there can also be applied outside of art. Painting at art camps usually focuses on figures and landscapes but now that you have developed an understanding of painting and the use of colors, that might translate to the color you use in your home. While at painting camp, if you find that a certain color makes you happy, that might be a good one to use when painting your house. Sewing camp will also give you the ability to make or fix your own clothes. Most sewing camps teach either hand or machine sewing, if not both. This will give you a creative outlet and an easy way to save money.

 

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Patience

            No art project can be finished in five minutes. It takes a lot of time and patience to complete any art project, whether it is waiting for paint to dry, clay to harden, or ripping out seems in a garment you are sewing. Due to this, art camp is a great place to learn patience. If you want your project to turn out well, you need to give it time to finish so nothing gets smudged, cracked, or when sewing, you can wear it with pride. In this day and age of media gratification, patience you learn in art camp will be applicable for your whole life. Whether it is in work, with your family, or with friends, there will always be times when you need to exercise that patience. Being able to develop patience early on will make it that much easier when you get older.

 

Respect

            One of the great things about art is that it is subjective. Any one piece of art can be interpreted in many different ways and there is no right answer. While, at art camp, most campers will all be making the same project, every project will look different. Even if you don’t understand another person’s project or how it fits the theme, you will understand the effort that it took to make that creation. Each camper spends a lot of time on their projects and deserves to be proud of it when they are finished. Understanding the time and effort that goes into an art piece will give you an appreciation whether you like a style or not. Be respectful of how other people put their own, unique spin on a project even if you don’t agree with it.

 

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            There is so much more to art camp then just coming home with creative projects. While you are in the process of making these, you will learn practical skills, such as painting and sewing that will be useful as you grow up. You will also learn patience and respect, which will benefit you in every part of life, whether its work, family, friends, or hobbies.

 

            The Handwork Studio is a kid’s needle arts, machine sewing, and fashion camp that teach kids practical skills that can help them through out life. If you think your child would be interested visit The Handwork Studio website or call 610-660-9600 for more information.

Tags: kids art classes in narberth pennsylvania, Machine Sewing, Summer Camp, Kids Camp, Sewing, Summer, Fashion & Machine Sewing