by Mary Beth Krapil
Summer is almost here. The kids will soon be out of school and a couple of days after that, they will be BORED. Isn’t that how it goes?
If you have kids in your life, be it your own, your grandies, your neighbors, maybe you might want to take the opportunity to share your fun. Teach them to sew. I had a blast with my grand kids over Spring break. I have two beautiful grandies, a 6 year old girl, Natalie, and an 8 year old boy, Shane. They spent several days at our house and Natalie wanted to learn to sew. Shane preferred to spend his time with Papa out in the garage.
Natalie and I started with making a pillow. We chose fabric from my stash and set to work. Gramma cut the pieces, She wasn’t brave enough to let Natalie use the rotary cutter just yet.
We learned about seams and wrong sides together (sometimes I still have a problem with that). We pinned.
We learned about using the sewing machine. The speed control on the HQ Stitch 210 machine is perfect for keeping beginners from getting carried away!
We turned and we stuffed. I think this was Natalie’s favorite part!
We sewed the opening shut and we had a pretty pillow and a proud new sewer!
When brother saw the pillow, he wanted one too. Well then, you’ll just have to make it yourself. “Haha!” I thought, “he has fallen into my web!” 😉 Natalie was a natural follower of the See one, Do one, Teach one concept. It was really fun for her to show her big brother all the steps.
Of course they both wanted to give the HQ Infinity a try. Before we could quilt, we had to make quilt tops. Out came my box of 5 inch charm squares. They chose the colors and laid them out in the order they wanted. Natalie chose multi-colors while Shane stuck with a blue/teal palette. We learned about sewing rows and the importance of keeping seams straight and of a consistent size.
We set about sewing and pressing seams. Using the iron was fascinating.
They both learned that it takes some time to put a quilt top together. I think it instilled a deeper appreciation of the quilts I had given them over the years. Natalie stuck to it and enjoyed the process, especially the pressing (that was a surprise!). Shane tired of the repetitiveness and gave up to go hang with Papa some more.
Soon Natalie was ready to quilt. I loaded the frame in the evening after they had gone home so we would be ready to go in the morning. I loaded enough backing to do both quilts just in case Shane would be inspired to finish when he saw Natalie quilting.
I basted the edges of the quilt top and let Natalie do what ever she wanted. I suggested loops and zig-zags and she happily quilted away. Just as I had suspected, Shane wanted to get his hands on that big machine too; so he finished sewing his top while Natalie quilted. Gramma was a little frazzled trying to keep eyes on all of those little fingers and flying needles! Shane got his turn with the Infinity under Natalie’s watchful eye.
I knew Natalie was hooked when the next morning I heard, “What are we going to sew today, Gramma?” So we made a bag to carry her iPad. We quilted the fabric and cut pieces and assembled them into a bag. Sew much fun! And Shane made another pillow; one for his Dad!
Of course we also made time for fresh air and exercise. And baking cookies.
Who will you share your love of quilting with this summer?