Monday, February 23, 2015

Just Four-Patchin’!

I have been deep in sewing mode with nothing much to share but MORE of the same blocks added to the design wall – it doesn’t look that much different, and I’m sure you can imagine it so instead – I want to share an email that I received with permission!

See this sweet thing sewing on a big girl Bernina??

Oh I love stories of Quilty Grandmas encouraging Quilty Granddaughters to get stitchin!!

If you have a young person, boy or girl, that shows any interest in what you are doing with fabric – please encourage them!  This is how seeds are planted.  This is how creativity is explored!

This is how we get kids off of the video games and ipads and ipods and away from the television.

This is how we get kids to know the joy and fulfillment of creating something useful and beautiful with their own hands.

This is how we teach them that it is fun to PLAY!

Linda writes:
Hi Bonnie,
I just thought I would write a quick note to thank you for telling us about the four-patch quilt-a-long.  I am working on the many four patch in a squares needed for Edyta's quilt.
Due to the extreme cold here in New Jersey,  my ten year old granddaughter spent last weekend with me.  We pulled some fabrics and she began to  also make  four patches. 
She learned to make four patches without pinning intersections, how to chain piece and how to use leader/enders. 
Oh, I almost forgot.  She also learned how you can sew with no bobbin thread! 
Ha!  How we laughed.
Look at that smile of accomplishment!
We will be using the four patches in your free "I Spy" quilt.  She is quite excited to make this quilt for her brothers.
I have attached a few pictures of my young quilter.
Thanks for all you do, Bonnie!
Doesn't this just warm your heart?
I also think that it is important for kids to learn how to sew on a grown up machine that is capable of sewing a good stitch.  A machine that will teach them to respect the tools of our trade, and give them that sense of “I can do it.”  Toy machines just might not do that –and while we love our machines and may fear for the tension being screwed up, or other issues being caused by youngsters, with the proper supervision, they CAN learn to use our machines with respect and care.
And if they are sewing on a machine that gives them a happy result, instead of some cheap big box store plastic disposable number that will cause them headache and heartache, they will LOVE the whole experience rather than learn to hate it.
A good machine doesn’t have to be expensive, but it does have to be reliable, and that is why I would definitely choose a vintage non-computerized machine for a young sewer to learn on.  Less knobs and options also mean less temptation to “turn this and see what it does!”
Come to think of it, that worked for my friend Mona too!  It doesn’t have to be a young person learning to sew without intimidation ---
Have you joined in on the APQ Quilt Along?  
I’ve also heard from many of you who have already signed up for the Vegas Retreat in August!  Hooray!  We are going to have a ball – just you wait and see!  Click the Vegas Retreat tab at the top of the blog for more info if you missed that post.

And for those worried about the heat?  For heaven's sake -- we are NOT sewing outside!  Think of being pampered in air conditioned comfort.  A veritable oasis! Besides, it's a dry heat.  Come on!  You know you want to come!
What’s brewing around here!
Sadie and I just got back from a pre-dark walk.  Temps are just under 30 degrees again so back to freezing.  SO happy the water is functional!  This is what warms me up on my return from outside.  Twinings Chai tea in my Keurig.  I love it milky and just a bit sweet…mmmmm good!
Back to the sewing.  Since I’m here alone tonight – it’s leftovers ala microwave.
Sew sew sew!

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  1. My 11 year old grand-daughter made a quilt for her new baby brother while visiting here last summer. Two years before she and my grandson (her older brother) made a quilt together. They both learned a lot and enjoyed the process.

  2. Super excited for Las Vegas! Got my confirmation that I made the cutoff. Really looking forward to this trip, so glad you are coming Bonnie!

  3. When I was about 9 (around 1956) my Mom got a brand new Necchi, one that had many fancy stitches using cams. She taught me to sew on that machine. Her friends were appalled that she let me use this expensive machine, but I guess she had faith in me and I made many, many garments, etc. on that machine. Sure wish I had that today, it was a workhorse!!

  4. Thank you so much for sharing that email. Cute, cute pictures...what a sweetie!

  5. So much fun to teach children. Four patches are so perfect for a start. Microwave, movies, sewing...it sounds like heaven.

  6. Hi from Lake Jackson, TX. I just heard that I am 'in' for the Vegas eventt! Yeah for me! I can't wait for the next issue of Quiltmaker to come out to see what our project will be!, I've been fortunate to take classes from you in McKinney, TX twice and once in Michigan! Love all you do and thank you for all you do for us quilters.

  7. Hi Bonnie. What a wonderful report! It's always good to see young people get interested in creating or doing instead of being glued to a screen. You are right on the button about teaching a child on a real machine. I have been a piano teacher for 25 years. When parents say they picked up a rickety out of tune old piano with "just a few strings broken, and "only one or two" keys missing just to see if their child will be interested and stick with it, it really makes me cringe. EVERYONE becomes frustrated when their equipment doesn't work properly - even children. There is no better way to make them lose interest than by giving them a piece of junk to learn on.

  8. Bonnie: Thanks for Sharing. I learned to sew on my Grandma's Treadle machine when I was 8 and graduated to my moms electric when I was ten, making my own clothes. We did not have TV, a phone or even indoor plumbing, yet! My Granddaughter is only one, so it will be a while before she can sew! LOL! BUT, My son learned to sew on an electric, Singer when he was 11! I taught them how to larch hook when they were 4 yrs old. Very therapeutic for them.


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