My granddaughter, Makinley, loves to do “crafty” things. She had seen me make quilts and helped to make pillows, and when she was seven years old she wanted to make a quilt.
I cut 12-inch blocks from pre-washed, good-quality, 100 per cent cotton and ironed each block on a piece of white freezer paper. Then we got out some colouring books and found some suitable pictures. We tore the page out of the book, went to the window and traced the picture (with pencil) onto the fabric. The freezer paper keeps the picture stable and makes it much easier to colour. Makinley chose to draw the picture on some of the blocks. After each block was finished, using a light pressing cloth, I ironed the colour right into the fabric.
After the blocks were finished, she laid them out on the floor, leaving a space in between each block for a plain block. This is necessary to get the feel of how the quilt will look. She chose red and dark blue for her plain blocks and decided to do the colours alternately (which was a good choice). I showed her how to sew them together on the machine. (She loved that job!). After Makinley had sewn the blocks together, I sewed the strips together for her, and pressed them.
Then we chose the backing and layered first the backing, then the batt and then the top and trimmed the bottom layers to about 2 inches larger than the top.
Next we got out the safety pins and pinned all the layers together all over the quilt.
Since it was her quilt, I thought she should “tie” it to make it really hers.
She chose the red and white yarn and with a darning needle, went in and out and in and out again, cut and double knotted the yarn.
I put the binding on, and that was one very proud granddaughter with her first quilt. Her four-year-old sister wants to make one now but I may have to hold her off for a few years.
This was a fun project and although the blocks took almost a year to complete, we had fun putting it together this summer.
A wonderful grandma-granddaughter project to create lasting memories.
– Myrlene Currie writes from Carman, Manitoba