Fabric pillow cover
One of the easiest projects around the humble pillow or cushion cover makes a great starting point for anyone just beginning. There are many types of pillow and cushion covers to choose from with some of the easiest designs using the envelope style which requires no closures such as buttons or zippers. Common skills you’ll learn include basic straight stitching, seam finishing and hemming, and all skills that you’ll use on more advanced projects.
Another beginner-friendly project is a tote bag. Not only are they incredibly versatile and useful, now that the majority of people are eschewing plastics, but they also make a fantastic gift item. Using similar skills to that of a cushion cover, a tote bag is the next natural progression and will help teach you about different shapes.
Everyone loves a comfy pair of pyjama bottoms and if you’ve mastered the first two projects then these should be well within your comfort zone. One of the great things about pyjamas is that they are designed to be a forgiving fit, which means that you don’t have to be overly worried about the sizing of your garment. Elastic waistbands or drawstrings are a great way to add an element of flexibility and help create a nice comfortable fit.
Zippers are one of the things that most people get hung up on the most and seem to have trouble with when it comes to sewing. One of the easiest projects to tackle is a zipper pouch or purse as it involves attaching the zipper to a seam that is open on each end. Unlike a skirt or a dress, an open pouch lets you practice working with zips without needing to sew the ends into a seam.
Like anything the more you sew, the better you will get and the more comfortable with different techniques. All of the projects above can be completed without any special equipment other than a good pair of sewing scissors, needles, material and threads. Of course, a sewing machine will help speed things up, but it is not necessary for the majority of beginner projects.