4-H youth have “sew” much fun

July 25, 2019

Sew Much Fun leaders and participants with their beautiful creations, back row, left to right: Instructor Tina McPhall, Ivy Frisch, Kerrigan Koch, Ruby Frisch, Camilla Nesheim; front row, left to right: Brailyn Tucker, Eliana Smith, Mariah DeGeer and Jasmine Mackie.

On July 9th and 10th, 4-H youth gathered at the Pere Marquette District Library to participate in 2 days of sewing fun at the Sew Much Fun Day Camp with certified sewing instructor, Tina McPhall. She was assisted by Clare County 4-H SPIN Coordinator, Maggie Mieske, and Camilla Nesheim, a 4-H exchange chaperone from Norway. Tina provided lunches and snacks, and beautiful sewing kits were donated by the Mid-Michigan Quilters Guild with chicken pin cushions made and donated by Keepsake Quilts, Inc in Mt. Pleasant.

Youth learned the basics of machine and hand sewing plus beginning quilting techniques to create beautiful patchwork pillows. Sisters Ruby and Ivy Frisch even squeezed in a more challenging project, creating a drawstring backpack. Participants ranged in age from 8-15 years old. All of them pushed themselves to their limits, helping each other, encouraging each other, and growing in their sewing expertise through the 4-H hands on experience. When asked in a survey what their favorite part of this 4-H experience was, they said “helping people,” “being kind,” “encouraging others,” and “not giving up.”

Youth were also treated to a special presentation by Camilla about Norway 4-H. Participants learned that while many of the programs are similar to 4-H in the U.S., Norwegian youth do a LOT of tent camping, foraging for and cooking chanterelle mushrooms in the woods as a part of 4-H.

Another sewing workshop called Sew and Go is coming up August 16th from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. in the basement of the Pere Marquette District Library, 185 E. 4th St. in Clare. This workshop is meant for older youth (11-19 years old as of 1-1-19) with some sewing experience. They will design and sew a book bag or string backpack just in time for school! Bring your own lunch, but snacks, fabric, sewing machine and sew much fun are provided! You’re also encouraged to bring your own sewing machine. Space is limited. This workshop is FREE to current 4H members. There is a one -time membership fee for new members. (Please ask about the availability of scholarships). Deadline to register: August 12th. NOTE: We would like to offer more sewing activities and projects to youth in Clare County and would love anyone with sewing skills and experience to volunteer. Call Maggie Mieske, Clare County 4-H SPIN Club Coordiinator at 989-539-7805 or email mieskema@msu.edu.

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