Little House on the Prairie; Maple Leaf

My 7 year old, Penny, just finished sewing her Maple Leaf block for our Little House on the Prairie sew along.  This block design was actually contributed by a little girl named Caitlyn who sewed along with us a few years ago when I made this quilt with my older daughter.

To refresh your memory, this is Caitlyn and her completed quilt from the first Little House on the Prairie sewalong.  Caitlyn just won a second place ribbon for another quilt that she entered into QuiltCon this year!  How exciting for her!

Both of my girls are feeling sick this weekend so we are taking it easy.  Penny decided that she still wanted to sew her maple leaf though.  As she sat down at the sewing machine she said “I’m just like you Mommy!  I am wearing a robe and slippers and sewing!”  She said it with a great deal of pride which made me laugh. It’s true, I walk around most of the day in the winter with my robe and slippers (over my clothes I might add, not over pjs) just for added warmth because our old house is drafty and I am always cold.  It’s probably how my kids will remember me! It could be worse. Come to think of it, I can clearly remember the robe that my mom lived in during my childhood. And it evokes pretty happy memories.

It’s fun watching Penny make her fabric selections.  She leans towards incorporating solids into her blocks and her sister was only interested in prints.  I can’t wait to see how different their two quilts look once they are done.

For this block, we made 4 half square triangle units. I don’t want Penny using a rotary cutter yet but wanted to give her the chance to cut along the line separating the units. I bought these scissors when I started sewing with my kids and recommend them:

They are inexpensive yet work well on fabric. I recently bought a number of pairs to use with my Girl Scout troop as we work on our sewing badge. They are a worthwhile investment AND keep the kids away from your good scissors!  It’s important to explain to your child how they have to work their fingers to pull the blades together when cutting.  It took Penny a moment to catch on but then she was all set.  She doesn’t need to squeeze her hand like that with the kids craft scissors.  So, it’s another good lesson!

We are making our way through Farmer Boy still.  We are probably half way.  Maybe next weekend we will make another block.  Please join in!  All the posts can be found here.  Remember to click on Lily’s version for full instructions.

Little House on the Prairie Sewalong; Bunny

My cute little second grader finished up her fourth block in the Little House on the Prairie Sewalong over the weekend!  When we finish a block, I am never sure who feels more victorious, me or my child.  It’s a lot of work to sew with a child, there’s no getting around that!  But it is very rewarding too.

This block is supposed to represent Pet and Patty, the two horses that Pa bought to pull the wagon from the little house in the big woods to the little house on the prairie.  But, in the book Little House on the Prairie, there is a new baby colt named Bunny, as well.  So, Penny has decided that her block is Bunny.  She chose a textured solid background for her block and went right for one of my favorite stashed woodgrain prints for the mane and tail. She thought that they looked like hair and I couldn’t disagree with that good choice.

This block is sewn with templates. I precut the pieces for Penny and then had her tell me which order she thought that we should sew them in by looking at the key on the pattern sheets.  She was very good at it and could see right away what she had to do. I was impressed. I did all the pinning because there are lots of angled pieces in this block and they are tricker to pin.  She did all the sewing though and did a fabulous job!

We hope you will join us and sew along!  All the instructions for this block can be found in my earlier post right here.

Little House on the Prairie Sew Along; Mary’s Nine Patch

Penny just completed the third block for her Little House on the Prairie Quilt!  Information about the free sewalong and the block pattern can be found here.

In The Little House on the Prairie, Mary is sewing nine patch blocks.  It’s the perfect block for a beginner sampler like this because it’s easy!  And it gave me the chance to teach Penny about chain piecing and nesting seams too.  In this book, Mary and Laura spent hours watching bunnies in the tall prairie grass so as soon as Penny spotted this lavender bunny print in my stash, she knew she wanted to use it.  I think it was the perfect choice.  It has just a touch of red to coordinate with her log cabin block and she paired the lavender with aqua which she also used in the log cabin.

Remember to post images of your blocks on Instagram using the hashtag #littlehousealong. If you want to tag me too, @duringquiettime, I will be sure to see it sooner and can compliment you on your work!

Today, I am a guest blogger on The Quilter’s Planner blog, talking about ways to introduce your child to sewing.  If you have a younger child and think that they might not be quite ready for this project yet, maybe you will enjoy some of my tips.