One of my little sister's Christmas gifts was a basket of sewing items all her own. She has long been interested in 'helping' me to sew - but I thought it might help for her to have her own projects to work on. I had been admiring all the cute felt items on Etsy - and I thought felt would be a great material for her to begin doing small sewing projects on her own - since it doesn't ravel and it is generally very easy to work with.
In her basket were scissors, pins/cushion, measuring tape, needles, decorative beads, some pink cotton yarn and a crochet hook, and a set of colorful felt squares.
This was her first project - all done in one day. She hand and machine sewed it, and glue the decorative bead sprinkles to the donut 'icing'. She is very proud of it - and I think it turned out very cute!! I think she is planning on using it in her play kitchen.
I included a few simple patterns (including the donut) for some felt food and a pincushion just to get her started. If you don't feel like coming up with original ideas, there are some very inspiring ideas on Etsy! Just search 'felt food'.
I also found this great shop that sells very affordable PDF patterns for felt food sets! I'll definately be getting some in the future...
Felt pincushions are also an easy project! They can be a simple or as decorative as desired.
If you have a young sibling or little friend who has an interest in sewing (or whatever your particular talent might be) - encourage them to learn - get them started and help them along! It seems to me that kids are often underestimated and need a challenge to help them grown and learn.
The 'starter kit' idea would also work for cooking items if you have a youngster interested in that, or knitting/crochet, artwork....whatever their interest may be. Carolina has been having lots of fun with her sewing basket, and I can already tell she has a love and talent for sewing.