Saturday sewing: Kid friendly little project.

Wanting a fun project to amuse kids on a weekend? I watched this Facebook Live from Janome America and Kimberley Einmo a while ago and was inspired to make a similar “Done before Dinner” project. Thank you, Kimberly. I now use my iPad rice pillow or stand every day!  Look for Kimberly’s video on Facebook > Janome Sewing Machines > videos > Kimberly Einmo Done before Dinner series.  It has add yarns and decorative trims to your projects with couching techniques in the video title. 

“Done before dinner” iPad stand filled with rice. Courtesy of Janome America and Kimberly Einmo

I used a green cotton/linen blend fabric and couched a slightly bubbly yarn as embellishment – as suggested by Kimberly.  You could, of course, recycle denim jeans and make your iPad stand from upcycled materials. 

iPad in place. The size of the stand can be made smaller for a phone or different tablet.

So recently I had 2 little people staying over as their Mom & Dad’s shifts overlapped and there is no childcare on weekends. So we got sewing together! 

They chose fabric in my stash and we cut 2 pieces of fabric for each of them measuring approx 9 x 6 inches. Kimberley suggests 12 x 9 inches in her Facebook Live but I wanted these to be a little smaller to accommodate their phones.

To make it an easier and quicker project for them (attention spans are fairly short at that age) I omitted the couching embellishment and just had them sew their little cell phone pillows together. 

There was a strong need to catch the wave of the attention span and get the job done quickly. This little project delivered!

Fold in half right sides together so it will be a double layer 6 x 4.5 inches with a fold down the one side. 

Sew as follows ( there is a video on Janome Sewing Machines Facebook page where Kimberly shows how to make this):

  1. Sew one short 4.5 inch side leaving an opening of about 2 inches in the middle of the seam (so you can add the rice later)
  2. Now sew the long side seam. 
  3. Turn the fabric on the other short side to form a triangle sort of shape. The side seam will be in the centre of this 4.5 inch seam and not at the end. Sew closed like in #1 leaving a similar 2 inch opening for the rice filling. 
  4. Trim the corners to reduce bulk. 
  5. Turn right side out. You will need to give a bit of assistance here as it is a little fiddly to get it turned out through that 2 inch hole. Poke the corners gently. 
  6. Line up the bottom edge of the pillow with the 1 – 1.5 inch needle plate marking and stitch right across. Stitch again about 1/2 inch further into the pillow. This creates the little “furrow” where the iPad or phone will rest. 
  7. Now comes the fun part with the rice. Take care supervising the little ones or you may end up with rice all over your floor! You need a funnel and a little cup to transfer rice. Much fun was had playing with the rice! I think it was a good thing for a rainy day as we had not been able to go to the waterpark – playing with rice instead of sand at the beach was a diversion. Yay for Kimberly’s project!  
  8. Fill the short bottom section first. Fill with rice using the funnel and whip stitch closed. 
  9. Then fill up the other part – it takes about 3 cups of rice per “pillow”. Whip stitch closed as well. 

They were both very proud of their achievement and the cell phones were put to the test on their new little cell phone pillows real quick. Speaking as a grandma: is it not a little weird to see this when some of us maybe only got our first cell phones well into our adulthood?! Times sure change.

Whip stitching is a skill to be perfected but it sure got the job done to keep the rice inside the fabric pocket!

We were sewing on the Janome MC15000 as that is what I have set up and ready. However, this project can be sewed on ANY Janome sewing machine as all you need is a straight stitch. Very kid friendly and probably took less than 1/2 an hour to complete. 

  1. Thank you Kimberly for the inspiration and totally useful little project! 

About Liz Thompson

I am the National Education Manager for Janome & Elna Canada and I LOVE to sew! I have been employed full time in the sewing and quilting industry for over 30 years so I bring a wealth of sewing knowledge & expertise to this blog. I enjoy all forms of sewing from quilting to sewing garments to machine embroidery and software. Pretty much everything in my life is seen through the eyes of a passionate sewer! I am constantly on the look out for fun, innovative and inspiring ideas to share with you all on this blog. I also love to sew, read, knit , crochet, travel and spend time with my family and friends.
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