doing her thing

I think she was three when I took the first picture of her sewing at my machine by herself. When I pick up my camera and capture her doing what she loves, I often wonder if we will look back at these pictures one day and smile about how ‘she’s been sewing since she could walk’. You know, like the musicians that have pictures of them strumming a guitar as a toddler. Maybe one day she’ll be a fashion designer and teach her mom that there is more to style than jeans and a t-shirt. I have no idea where it will lead, but I sure hope I am given years to watch.

50mm, ISO 400, 1/125, f/2.8

1.16pillow-01Her brothers were training for American Ninja Warrior all around the room. They were loud, busy, and such a distraction for any normal person, but not for her. She’s got the gift of focus when she is doing what she loves.

85mm, ISO 250, 1/160, f/2.8 ~ 50mm, ISO 250, 1/160, f/1.81.16pillow-0285mm, ISO 400, 1/100, f/2.81.16pillow-0450mm, ISO 250, 1/160, f/1.81.16pillow-05Little eyes always watching her big sister…

50mm, ISO 250, 1/160, f/2.81.16pillow-06She told me homeschool would be more fun if there was more crafting involved. I happily agreed, so we worked on a pillow between subjects. She always wants to use my good fabric scissors, but they are a challenge for left-handed self. If any of you seamstresses out there have a suggestion on scissors for lefties, please share. Not kid scissors…the real deal, please…she’s serious folks.

I’m going to keep capturing her doing her thing and it will keep making me smile to think about how it might play out in her life in the years to come.

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  • Tammy Henderson - Love the little peak of her tongue sticking out. I found these on Amazon.Looks like they have good reviews. Wish I’d thought to get them for my lefty when she was still home and we were working on Home-ec class.

  • Lisa K - My eight year old “lefty” just got a sewing machine for Christmas and I was just about to start Googling for sewing scissors. Are you reading my mind πŸ™‚ I’ll let you know if I find any!

  • Sara - My mom gifted us all a pair of gingher scissors when we were at home….my lefty sister got some as well.

  • Southern Gal - I love how she’s using the scissors upside down so they will cut properly with her left hand. And I love her seriousness. My granddaughter wants to sew on my machine so badly. I’m just going to let her go here shortly.

  • Emily - I use mundial (I’m a lefty) and they serve me well.

    If she wants a cutting wheel, it would be beneficial to try those out before buying — a lot of them have a guard on the left side to protect a left hand that would be holding the fabric but I have found that those just get in the way for me.

    When she’s a bit older and wants a serious kitchen knife, the Shun D-shaped handle is delicious for lefties – and my righty husband can use them comfortably as well.

    Happy crafting!

  • Southern Gal - Oh, and Gingher makes the best fabric scissors in my opinion. My mother has a pair that must be 50 years old.

  • Iselin RenΓ©e - Great photos πŸ™‚

  • Meg - Long time reader, first time commenter! As a leftie and a quilter I can say from my own experience that I do not like left handed scissors at all and I’ve tried quite a few. Might be a personal thing. My favourite sewing scissors are these Singers – shorter blades and a comfy grip so they’re not too uncomfortable to use
    For straight cutting she’s probably old enough to use a rotary cutter and ruler, with supervision, and you can always get a ruler holder to keep little fingers safe – if she’s serious about sewing I’d recommend learning to use a rotary cutter!

  • Bonnie - Another vote for ginghers! I got mine as a child and still have them into my 30’s! Maybe look at estate sales for gently used ones? Or Ebay? You can get them sharpened at craft stores pretty inexpensively.

  • Debbie H -

    Hi Ashley. I’m a long time sewer. The best scissors, in my opinion, are Gingher’s. I have a lefty also, now 24, and she has her own pair, although your daughter could work circles around mine, I’m afraid. If you take care of them, they will last a lifetime. I’ve had mine for 40 years. Amazon has them for the best price you’d likely find, but you might check your local fabric store to see if they carry them, especially if you can take advantage of coupon discounts, like JoAnn’s Fabrics. I’m from California, so your stores may likely be different than here. Much easier to do any job with the correct tools πŸ™‚ She is amazing to watch grow up. Her inner light is STRONG!

  • Byron - I look forward to seeing your sons on American Ninja Warrior!

    Her focus is amazing (but I doubt she ever gets you out of jeans and a t-shirt)! Wonderful pictures!

  • Marcie - another leftie here! My mom gave me a left-handed gingher scissors years ago when I was learning to sew – love them and no one steals them cuz they drive a right-handed person crazy πŸ˜‰ Also LOVE my Rada fabric scissors!!

  • Haley - I LOVE this. It is so fun following along seeing how she has grown. I take lots of pictures of my 2.5 year old painting and I always thing similar thoughts.

  • Suzanne - Love it, love it! I do believe sewing is somewhat of a lost art but I sew for fun, for a living, and to keep my children from looking like waifs! I have been sewing since I was 8 years old and have made many of my own clothes (not anymore but for many years!) and now I do more home interior work. I left corp. America when I was pregnant with my second son (have 3 now) and starting make custom window treatments for others. After 13 years, I am still – there is nothing more relaxing for me than to sit down to my machine and just sew. I am left handed and the best scissors by far are Gingher and made specifically for left handers. I used ones for right handers for years but these are wonderful! Enjoy!

  • Kim B. - That’s great that you asked about scissors for lefties — as a lefty, looking at that one photo of her with the scissors in her left hand was killing me!! ow ow ow ow ow!!

    Your readers have provided good suggestions, obviously the highest quality are the Ginghers. I must say as a little girl I started out with Fiskars that are kind of “no-handed” rather than being specifically left- or right-handed – you can see on the package which ones are for which hand.

    That’s so awesome that she has loved sewing, I can remember pictures of her sewing her ribbon. I didn’t care when I was a little girl and it would have meant so much to my mom to share with me.

  • Olivia - Hello, I’m a left handed person, and when I was just a tyke my mother gently taught me to use right handed scissors. She never tried to change my writing hand or anything else, but because left handed scissors were completely inaccessible in the 80s she was determined that I would not be held back from crafting by lack of usable equipment. I’ve always been very grateful that I know this one skill using my right hand. It’s hard to find left handed scissors, and do think it’s a skill that can be learned. Good Luck πŸ™‚

  • Alysa - I adore this! Especially that you’re thinking of continuing on the tradition of snapping pictures as she grows up doing what she loves!!

  • Tobi - Beautiful pics of your little seamstress! I have to admit, though, as a boy mama, my absolute favorite is the one with ol’ Spidey climbing the stairs upside down in the background. Classic!

  • Renae Bradley - My daughter is left handed and has had the most success with right handed sharp/fresh embroidery scissors (we do more wool felt crafting over here then fabric) -she tends to like them better then her lefty ones. Share when you find one that your daughter likes!

  • Tiffani - I’m a lefty and I swear by fiskars. They have a line of scissors in multiple sizes that have a spring action. They are ambidextrous and reduce strain on your wrists. Goods for both me and my right handed daughter to use the same pair.

  • Katie - I’m a lefty too! Got given a pair of left-handed ginghers for my 21st birthday, and they are great!

  • Rachel - I would love to second the commenter who recommended the spring-action fiskers. As a lefty, I was pretty sure cutting anything was the worst. My lefty mom bought me a pair of these when I was sewing for 4H as a kid. Total game changer. Cutting out the patterns and fabric became one of my favorite parts of the project because the scissors were no longer the enemy. (Lefties have pretty passionate responses to scissor memories. The old school lefty scissors from elementary school would not be allowed for prisoners under the Geneva Convention.) So thankful for my early training in sewing!

  • Alison - Hi Ashley!

    I met you at the Be Crafty workshop in Friday Harbor. ? I am also a lefty and my mom gifted me a pair of left-handed Gingher scissors years ago. They are probably the best gift she has ever gotten me. I know you have a bunch of comments saying the exact same thing already but I couldn’t resist sharing my thoughts too. I hope this helps!!

  • Erin - I’m a lefty, and there were never left handed scissors around when I needed them while I was growing up. I learned to deal with regular scissors and now don’t mind them at all. Today I’m 36 years old, and I might not know what to do with them if you gave me a pair of lefty’s!

  • Janae - Gingers make excelllant quality sewing scissors, and I know the sell ones for lefties!!! They are sold at any true sewing store, great to use a 40%off coupon on at JoAnns fabrics!

  • Courtney - How I wish i had started sewing that young!! I have a feeling my career path would have taken a very different turn, but then again God’s plan is always better! Does your daughter sew using patterns. I love Modkid!