Little House on the Prairie Sew Along: Eagle Feather


Lily with Eagle Feather

Lily and I completed block 14 in the Little House on the Prairie Sew Along today.  This is the last block for The Long Winter.  At the beginning of the book, an Indian walked in the store in town where the men were congregating and warned them of a severe winter that would last 7 long months.  The Indian wore a single Eagle feather.  As Lily said, it’s a tiny part of the story but so important!

Our block is inspired by Anna Maria Horner’s beautiful feathers.

eagle feather

I want to answer a few sewalong questions today.  Some people have asked about the templates and how to use them.  I want to make the blocks in this sewalong work for children and beginning sewists.  Often, with a block like this one, I would choose to paper piece.  But paper piecing scares away beginners and I think that the concept of sewing a mirror image and through the paper is a big foreign for children.  So, for blocks that cannot be easily pieced with cutting instructions alone (which do always include your seam allowance, fyi–that was another question I received), I thought that templates might work.  They can be assembled in the normal manner, right sides together, 1/4″ seam, etc. but allow me to design some blocks that I couldn’t otherwise.

Sometimes, the templates have to be taped together.  That’s the case this time.  The taping together can often be the most annoying part-just think of it as a puzzle!  Cut with your template facing up on the right side of your fabric.  Rely on the diagram that prints with the template to figure out which piece is which.

Today I am going to give you the option of paper piecing since I know some more advanced quilters are also joining in.  So, download whichever you prefer:

Eagle Feather Templates

Eagle Feather Paper Piecing Pattern

We used the templates and they were ok but I had a hard time getting the top corner piece right so we just stitched on a larger piece and trimmed it down, squaring up the block while we were at it.

I didn’t include instructions with either because I think that as long as you lay things out you can figure out the sewing order.  If you need more help though, just email.


  1. Beautiful way to tie in the story Lily and Amy!

  2. Beautiful feather, Lily! What a clever use of fabrics! I’ve enjoyed using the templates with my beginner; they help her see how the patchwork fits together, sort of like figuring out a puzzle.

  3. Beautiful feather, Lily. I am having so much fun cheering you on. Your Mom is a great teacher!

  4. Great job Lily!

  5. I am loving your blocks & this is such a great idea. These were my favourite books as a child – even though I am in the UK I loved the adventures in print & then on the TV. You are inspiring me to get my books out & reread them. I have been so fortunate to have visited some of the sites from the books – including Laura & Almanzo’s home in Mansfield Missouri…. I don’t know where you are but several of the sites are scattered across the US to visit & are a wonderful experience for Laura fans.. I will be sewing along to make a quilt for my Granddaughter & hope to read them to her when she is older…. But I have time as she is only 10 months old. Congratulations to Lily on her choice of colours & her needlework.

  6. Melody A. says:

    Fabulous block Lily, !!!

  7. Lily, the fabrics you chose for the feather are spot on and the piecing is perfect. Keep reading and keep making those blocks.

  8. Love the feather! Thanks for the option of templates and paper piecing 🙂

  9. Beautiful work ladies. Miss Lily is becoming a rather accomplished seamstress (is that the right word for quilters?). I’m in awe!!

  10. Amanda Harvey says:

    Wow ladies what stars you are, I just love the feather! Such a brilliant idea and one I would like to do with my granddaughters.
    Keep up the good sewing xxx

  11. Another great block. You have inspired me to read the series. Yes, I am a grandmother and have never read these books. I have read the first 4, which I borrowed from my daughter. She cannot find the others right now, so off to the library I go. They are wonderful, even for a first time read at my age. Thanks Amy and Lily.

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