A Stitch in Time: 25 Sewing Projects Grandma Would Make for You


Remember Grandma at her sewing machine, crafting something just for you? Or the cozy quilts that became family legends, or the soft pillowcases that smelled faintly of lavender? Maybe you had embroidered tea towels or a perfectly-fitting apron for those baking adventures. Grandmas – they’re the queens of heartwarming, handcrafted gifts. From holiday table runners that invoke special memories to costumes that bring imagination to life, each stitch contains love, tradition, and comfort. These aren’t just sewn creations, they’re treasures woven with care and stories.

And guess what? The magic doesn’t have to stop there! I’ve scoured the web for free sewing patterns that capture that same Grandma magic. So, grab your fabric and thread – it’s time to create your own heartwarming heirlooms!

Woven Heart Quilt Pattern

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Snuggle up with someone you love this winter with a beautiful Swedish Woven Heart Quilt. This free woven heart quilt block and throw quilt pattern is suitable for a beginner quilter. 

Ruffled Pillow Cases

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Sew dreamy, old-fashioned pillowcases that will look amazing in your bedroom! This DIY sewing tutorial takes just a yard and a half of fabric per pillowcase and works great with cotton, linen, satin, or another light to medium-weight fabric.

Kids Romper Pattern

My kids’ grandma used to make the most adorable clothes for us. She made matching rompers for my brother and me that were a lot like this one!

Check out the free kids’ romper pattern.

Pretty Tea Towels from Fat Quarters

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Learn how to make darling tea towels out of fat quarters that you have leftover from other sewing projects. The two layers of cotton are not too thick, which I really like, plus the more I wash them the softer and more absorbent they become. Not to mention that I get to brighten up my kitchen with beautiful fabric!

Vintage Doily Table Runner

Photo credit: Sum of Their Stories

Your grandma probably had a collection of vintage lace and doilies. Did she leave them to you? Turn them into a beautiful and useful table runner. This clever tutorial will have you sewing and feeling nostalgic.

Sweet Bow Tie Pattern

Photo credit: Heather Handmade

Grandma loves to see her favorite boys all dressed up. Learn how to make a child’s bow tie with this free bow tie pattern. It’s a faux tie version (so no messing around and coming undone) in three styles and sizes.

DIY Milk Carton Coin Pouch

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Of course, this adorable Milk Carton Pouch reminds me of Grandma’s. No, I don’t think the milkman ever really delivered milk to my Grandma’s house…but I like to imagine he did.

Padded Binder Cover

Photo credit: Crafty Staci

Do you remember these padded binder covers from the 1980s? I do! They used to be all the rage. I bet grandmas today would make them as well if they knew about this free padded binder cover tutorial.

Pocket Tissue Cover

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Grandma always has tissues in her purse for teary eyes, stuffy noses, and accidental spills. And, of course, she probably kept her tissue package in a fabric tissue cover.

Liberty Rainbow Quilt

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I love Liberty fabrics because of their timeless charm and silky feel. This Liberty Rainbow Quilt reminds me of my grandma so much! She wore dresses in floral prints that remind me of these.

Old-Fashioned Apron Pattern

Photo credit: Melissa Mortenson / Polka Dot Chair

I love the nostalgic and pretty look of a pinafore apron! Here is a gorgeous pattern for a Pinafore Apron with rick rack trim on the skirt edges and the bib. So lovely.

Cloth Napkins

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Do you remember using cloth napkins when eating special food at grandma’s house? I do! Make your meals special like hers with pretty DIY cloth napkins. This tutorial is fat-quarter friendly.

DIY Fabric Covered Journal

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These beautiful Fabric Covered Journals remind me of Grandma because I think of all the things I’d like to write about my Grandma. Things she taught me, things she did with me, things I want to do with her someday… I also think of how cool it would be to read an old journal of hers.

Lovely Scarves with Crochet Ends

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Scarves with Vintage Crochet always remind me of Grandma’s scarves because they look like doilies!

A Patchwork Quilt

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Nothing shares love like a patchwork quilt! I bet your grandma had lots of quilts like these, and she probably made them herself.

DIY Candy Cups

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Grandmas always have an endless supply of delicate candy in beautiful candy containers. They are also incredibly smart! These Pretty Quilted Desk Cups are just right for little hands to hold and not break…Grandmas already know this.

Pretty Box Pouch

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Fabric boxes like this were popular a hundred years ago. I wonder what kind of treasures were kept inside. Love letters? Stamp collections? Brooches?

Candle Jar Pincushion

Photo credit: Sum of Their Stories

I don’t think grandma would throw away a perfectly good candle jar. She would probably hers her super sewing skills to make it into something useful. This beautiful upcycled pincushion reminds me of something she would make.

Pretty Placemats

Photo credit: sew4home.com

One thing I distinctly remember about eating in grandma’s kitchen is she always had placemats! Make your own pretty patchwork placemats with this free tutorial from Sew4Home.

Argyle Christmas Stockings

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Argyle? YES! Doesn’t it take you back to old times? These Argyle Christmas Stockings will be cherished. The top of the stocking has a classic cuff that you can fold down. I used fleece, but fur, minky, or regular cotton also work great.

Bunny Treat Bags

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Bunny Treat Bags are so much fun to make You only need some charm squares, thread, ribbon, and a sewing machine. This free sewing pattern includes templates and step-by-step instructions. Sewing the curves is easy – check out my tips and tricks.

DIY Jewelry Bag

Photo credit: The Sewing Loft

I remember a grandma who would keep her treasures in a small pouch like this. The simple bag tutorial requires no special pattern or rulers and can be made with your favorite fat quarters.

Old-Fashioned Drawstring Bags

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Small details make all the difference in these sweet drawstring bags. They are perfect for holding small gifts and treats. Learn how to make them from a free tutorial.

Half Square Triangle Heart Quilt

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Love, acceptance, security, and kindness. All the feelings Grandmas share best. That’s what I see in this pretty Half Square Triangle Heart Quilt.

DIY Pillbox Sewing Pattern

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A dainty little pill pouch to hold whatever is needed to remedy a scraped knee, broken heart, or curious mind can always be found at Grandma’s house…one just like this Pillbox Pouch sewing pattern!

Free Mini Pouch Pattern

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And finally, we have the Bit O’ Kindness Pouch. Grandmas know the most powerful acts we can make are acts of kindness. They not only know this, but they show it.

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Disclosure: some of my posts contain affiliate links. If you purchase something through one of those links I may receive a small commission, so thank you for supporting SewCanShe when you shop! All of the opinions are my own and I only suggest products that I actually use. 🙂