Running stitch example close up

The Running Stitch and the Whip Stitch

  ​​When visitors sew for the first time, they often worry about the tools, like how to thread a needle and whether they’re going to poke themselves with the needle once it’s threaded. Once they start, however, they shift their focus to making a stitch. There are lots of ways to make a stitch, but there are two stitches that new sewers tend to start with: the running stitch and the whip stitch. Both
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Perfect Pentagons

Check out these neat stuffed balls. They are made of twelve pentagons, and for the ball to turn out nice and round, these pentagons should be exactly the same. Using a template will produce the same shape each time, but the template should be a perfect pentagon. Perfect, in this case, means more than doing an awesome job, it means that all the sides are the same length, and the angles where sides meet are also the sa
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Pop-Pop Boats

Pop-pop boats, so named for the popping sound they make as they travel, are a great way to experiment with a steam powered contraption at home. These toy boats have been made by children around the world for over a hundred years — starting back when steam powered real oceangoing ships. Many plans and how-to videos exist on the internet, but here are a few which move from simple to complex. These involve cutting
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Turning Problems Into Solutions: Frick Environmental Charter School Collaboration

Have you ever wanted to make something work better? The first graders at Frick Environmental Charter School did; from December to February, they identified problems in their classrooms and worked to invent solutions for those problems. MAKESHOP Teaching Artists worked with the first graders throughout their process via FaceTime chats, in-class sessions, and a field trip that brought the students into our workshop. In
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DIY RPG (an original MAKESHOP strategy game)

At our last Youth Maker Night we gave the kids the opportunity to create their own board game using pieces and parts from existing games (chess pieces, dice, paper money, etc.). One boy in particular decided to take this activity to a whole other level.  He developed a role playing strategy game using chess pieces and postit notes.  The materials were simple.  The instructions were not. We spent roughly 20 minutes go
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How-To: Origami Garrison Cap

Recently at MAKESHOP we’ve been wearing a lot of hats… Literally! A lot of them were pretty heavy on precision cutting and sewing, but I figured out how to make an awesome garrison cap with only a few materials.   Supplies: An iron Spray starch A bandanna-sized handkerchief (depending on the size of your head and intended size of hat, a smaller handkerchief might work better.)   Directions: Firs
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