For the love of craft: Why I think all children should be encouraged to create something 28



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Since I can remember, I’ve loved arts and crafts. My first grade teacher told my mum that she was sure I was born with a paint brush in my hand. I used to spend hours in a tree in my backyard, painting and creating things. I would even unravel the whole toilet roll just so I could make something out of it, much to my parent’s dismay!

As I grew up, my art changed and I would do bigger pieces, and I was interested in fashion. My grandmother gave me her Singer sewing machine and my world was opened up. She had a box full of sewing patterns and I’d spend hours pouring over which one to do. We’d each sit down and sew for days, sipping tea and making bags, skirts, dresses and beautiful tops.

When my own daughter was old enough to do arts and crafts, I couldn’t wait to show her what I had learnt. She loved art too and is now an accomplished artist with her own studio. So I guess you can imagine that my grandchildren had a wonderful upbringing!

It worries me that there might be some children out there who don’t have the opportunity to create things such as their own clothes. It’s such a useful skill and not only is there the sense of accomplishment when you finish a piece, you also save money making clothes for yourself and you’re keep a local fabric shop in business. And kids are just so delightful with a set of paints and some cardboard, it gives them fun for hours, yet parents insist on giving them iPads or taking them on fancy holidays overseas which they don’t like or appreciate.

Back when I was growing up, everyone made their own clothes and Mum would put you in a summer dress she made, or if she was like my mum and a terrible seamstress, she would put you in a shapeless sack and let you run around. What happened to those days? We’re so wasteful with money and so ready to buy more and more clothes yet it was the pleasure of making clothes that used to be exciting.

My mother-in-law is in her late 80s and sews clothes for the local clothing store. You wouldn’t know it was a 89-year-old doing it! And no one does. The would rather she make clothes than them…and I think it’s a bit sad.


So I want to know, do you still make clothes for your grandchildren and yourself? Or do you think it’s easier to just buy clothing? Do you show your kids how to be crafty?

Starts at 60 Writers

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  1. The urge to create comes from within. If kids want to learn to make things they will do it regardless of if they are influenced to do it or not.

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  3. Unfortunately electronic equipment has taken over, most kids are not interested in craft or playing outside. I have a number of grandchildren and there would be about 3 or 4 that would do craft.. It is a sad world.

  4. Art/craft and creativity is alive and well within the children. It just needs to be bought out and fostered.

  5. yes yes yes and yes. Way too many parents do not take the time to teach their kids any crafts. They stick a device in their hands. I have been creating all my life & it is a savage urge within. I may not always achive what is in my head but I find it sad that kids don’t have this urge or suppressed for the quick fix of a device. Just families being lazy as I think everyone has a creative streak that just needs to come out. Many forms of that, building, photography, art, craft. we need to nurture the skills of thinking laterally.

  6. Teaches them coordination, too & can also be a great way for them to make a very personal card or small gift for a parent, relative or friend. Lead by example, let them see you doing it & hopefully they will want to help/join in.

  7. I had little opportunity for creativity as a child, so I grew up thinking I didn’t have a creative bone within me. However, when my own children came along I let my wild child out and each one and all my grandies have shared the great joy of masses of messy paint and glue and glitter! Little scraps of anything could become amazing sculptures by pulling something out of the craft box and even the boys learnt to sew and knit and crochet little bits and pieces. One of the parents is anal about mess, and I feel sad for him because he like me had never had the opportunity. So Marie Nelson, in a way I agree with you, but the fostering and bringing out Rod Faithful is what is needed.

  8. Oh yes , yes, yes! Was tickled pink at Easter when granddaughters Gabby + Anna had lessons from their Mum on how to knit . This granny is a knitter and gets great results but rests a needle on the tummy as I knit, Cannot teach another to knit but can’t wait for them to learn sewing/ patchwork whatever. Oh bliss, having little creative hands around.

  9. My Grannies are being to sew they make me things. My grandson has made many toys and boxes with wood with his builder dads help. Arts and crafts are important and should be in schools especially if you have creative blood it needs to be expressed But some children don’t like doing arty stuff as they get older it’s a trial for them.

  10. Absolutely! Craft is such an important part of their development. My beautiful granddaughters have numerous large craft boxes. I always come up with a new craft when I visit. They just love learning new things.

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