Sewing Classes and Summer Camps Where LA Kids Can Have Sew Much Fun
Do you have a cool DIYer on your hands? An all-around crafty kid? A tween or teen interested in fashion design? This is the perfect summer to try a sewing or quilting camp. Sewing camps offer kids the opportunity to learn a useful skill, express themselves, and make new friends who keep them in stitches. Not sure your child is ready for a full camp of sewing? All of the sewing centers below also offer kids sewing classes year-round. (Of course, if you don't opt for sewing camp, you really ought to check out the dozens of other summer camps we know about!)
Most sewing camps cater to kids ages 8-13, but there are offerings for teens and younger kids as well. While some camps are all about girls, most happily welcome boys as well. Some camps focus on garment sewing, and others are for quilting, small project sewing, or fashion design. There are lots of options out there!
Sewing Arts Center
3330 Pico Blvd.
Santa Monica, CA 90405
Rock and Paper sessions 9am-11:30am or 12:30pm-2pm; Scissors sessions 11am-1:30pm
Ages : 9-16
More than 100 kids participated in Sewing Arts' Rock Paper Scissors Summer Camps in 2011, and the center has another full slate of sewing camps for 2012. All camps have a minimum of seven students and a maximum of 12. The Rock Studio, for beginners ages 9-13, focuses on machine techniques, with most students finishing four small projects. The Paper Studio, ages 9-13, is geared to returning students ready to move into accessories, wearables, and embellishment, with a focus on current fashion. In the Scissors Studio, ages 13-16, students chose a pattern based on their skill level and are taken through the entire construction process.
10921 W Pico Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90064
Times: Mon-Fri 10:30am-1:30pm; Mini Camp Tue-Thu only
Ages: 8 and up
Sew Modern is a newer, hip sewing shop near the Westside Pavilion, and this summer it's offering a smorgasbord of kids camps. In the Funway camps, students make their own outfits, which they show off in the last day's runway show. At quilt camp they learn to make their own quilts, from start to finish. At the mini slumber party camp, they aren't sleeping in the store; they're making what they take to a slumber party: jammies, a blanket, and a cool pillowcase. Sew Modern limits all classes to eight students, so there is plenty of individual attention.
1150 N. Western Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90029
FOrmerly known as Hands on 3rd, Unincorporated Education offers kids' fashion camps and sewing classes at its studio in Hollywood. Designed for beginning/intermediate sewers ages 9 and up, the camp lets kids design, sew, and re-purpose. The week culminates in a fashion show for friends and family.
Common Thread Studio
1011A Mission St.
South Pasadena, CA 91030
Times: Tue-Fri 10am - 2pm
Common Thread offers four different camps. The camps begin with machine threading and techniques to make simple but impressive items, and culminate in each camper making two projects. Common Thread not only offers camps and classes for kids and adults, but for $10 per hour you can access the studio space and sewing equipment (machines, sergers, etc). The shop offers items made on location.
The Sewing Studio
107 S. Fair Oaks Ave #107
Pasadena, CA 91105
Mini Camp and My Favorite Things: 10am - 1pm
American Girl: 1pm - 4pm
Teen Fashion: 2pm - 5pm
The Sewing Studio offers a wide range of classes for adults, teens, and kids, as well as one of the largest camp programs around. Any kids who are new to sewing or have never used a sewing machine before must attend a 1.5-hour Sewing Machine Fun class for $34 before starting camp. Camps cover how to read, lay out, and cut out projects; create matching outfits for themselves and American Girl dolls, and operate a sewing machine. Teen Fashion Camp is a one-week camp version of the popular five-week Teen Fashion class series.
Orange County and South Bay
Fashion Camp OC
3313 Hyland Ave.
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
No matter what your child's sewing/design interest, you can find something here. Fashion Camp OC is offering 16 different camp sessions for three different age groups this summer, from beginner-level sewing - including how to use a machine and use a pattern - to teen Style School, complete with runway show.
Sew Creative Cafe
1726 Aviation Blvd.
Redondo Beach, CA 90278
Times: 9am-12pm & 12:30pm-3:30pm
Sew Creative offers camps all summer long for kids ages six and up. Sewing and quilting camps are offered (as are knitting and crochet, for a complete choice of fiber camps). At sewing camp, kids begin by making a sewing bag, before moving on to a project appropriate to their skill level. All camps have a maximum of eight students.
The following sewing centers offer kids sewing classes and usually schedule some summer camp programs as well. Check their websites for updates:
Tanner's Sewing and Vacuum Center
6230 W. 87th St.
Westchester, CA 90045
Tanner's welcomes girls and boys ages 8-13, no sewing experience needed. A variety of themed camps and classes are usually offered, which may include funky accessories and sleepover goodies. Dates and themes have not been finalized for 2012; check Tanner's website for updates in the weeks before summer.
1637 1/2 Silver Lake Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90026
Sew LA runs classes nearly every night of the week, and the SewLab program provides access to a machine, serger, cutting table, and iron for $10/hour. At the end of April, the store is moving to a larger location in Atwater Village, with dedicated classroom space. Typically the store offers summer camps in July or August, but none are scheduled for 2012 until the move is complete.
Sew Vac Ltd
1762 Clark Ave
Long Beach, CA 90815
Sew Vac offers a full range of classes and clubs for adults, and has a year-round Kids Club, with plans to offer at least three themed kids camps this summer. Keep an eye on the website for updates.
And finally, for the kid who wants to design clothes without having to perform the actual needlework, consider the Cheryl Fudge Fashion Camp in Santa Monica, where campers can release their inner fashionistas on a plethora of fabrics and bling, then hand the creation off to seamstresses to sew up for a catwalk fashion show at the end. Who wouldn't enjoy that?