When I put a sewing machine on my daughter Bloomer’s wish list for Christmas, it was more of a “gee wouldn’t that be fun… someday” sort of thing. She likes to make things and draw things and generally very crafty, but hadn’t shown a lot of consistent interest in sewing herself. So imagine my delight when I asked if she wanted to make a card for my mom’s birthday (which is tomorrow, the 25th), and she said she wanted to make her a quilt instead.
The benefit of having my scraps already cut out and organized means that she can go in the box and pick out squares that are ready to go. She picked out four squares for a simple four patch, and off we went! Once we got the 4 patch top put together, she picked out a 10″ square for the back and sandwiched it. To keep it easy, we just straight line quilted it with a couple lines on each square. I did the binding on my machine since it’s kind of a tough thing to master.
She’s a big fan of using the foot pedal and the reverse switch on her machine. She’s not quite to the point of guiding the fabric herself under the presser foot, and is relying on my to tell her when to start and stop stitching, but hey, you have to start somewhere.
Well, after riding the high of finishing her first quilt, she wanted to make a second one for my dad. We went with the same design as the first one to keep it easy.
We wrapped these up and sent them to my parents in the “birthday box” for my mom, and they’ve put them in the Fancy Cabinet of Doodads. The thing on top of them is a box my aunt made out of plastic canvas – it’s kind of cool.
Well, having all those victories under her belt, I asked if she wanted to make a doll quilt for a friend of hers who is having a birthday party this weekend. She said no, but that she wanted to make her a stuffed animal instead.
Bloomer has a pink fleece owl I made her when she was two and needed something for “O” week at daycare, so she asked to make an owl. We cut out the the owl shape from pink fleece, and she picked out the fabric from the scrap bin for the belly and inside of the wings. This was a bit trickier to sew because of the curves, and she got introduced to our friend: the seam ripper.
She got a “My First Sewing Kit” for her birthday last weekend with some hand sewing projects in it, so I’m hopeful she’ll want to work on those in the coming weeks to learn more about hand construction techniques. The important thing, I think, is letter her guide what she wants to work on so she stays interested, and not put pressure on her. It’s difficult for me to not to guide her completely in how I would do things, so we’re both learning.