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10 year old wants to learn to quilt.

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Steph posted on Mon, Jul 18 2011 12:27 PM

Any thoughts on how I can get her started?  I only see her about once a month, but she really loves to learn new things.  Are there patterns for kids who quilt?  She has a Sew Easy.  Any ideas would be great.  Her mother is quite ill right now and facing major surgery, which hopefully will correct the problem.  I'm thinking Kavita might like to make her a pillow case or fleece/flannel lap throw tied instead of quilted.  Any ideas you have would be appreciated by this great family under stress!

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I have been teaching a group of Girl Scouts quilting (they started at age 9) and have used a book called "Traditional Quilts for Kids to Make"  by Barbara J. Elkmeier. I think it is a great book - the girls love the patterns and the directions are simple. 

Carol W. in Arkansas

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replied on Mon, Jul 18 2011 1:19 PM

I just taught my gr-grand daughter last year at age 9 how to sew. I started with the book "I'll teach myself to sew" #1. She needed the first steps on sewing a straight line and then zig-zags and then curves. She also needed to know about all the parts of the machine.That worked very well and went fast. I wanted her to know that she could sew by herself without my hovering over her. Her first project was just a pillow. Her second pillow was made with an insert. Her third project was a pillowcase. I was totally amazed at the great job she did on it. From there, there was no holding her back. We then went to Kids can do it" on quilting. There are little projects to do in the books but some are a little boring.Then the last project in the Kids can do it book is a "Hopscotch lap quilt". This was perfect and she loves doing it. Next thing she asked for was her own sewing machine. She got that for her birthday and has already started her own stash!

Good luck and keep us posted.

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Fence rails work great.  I get excited when I see a young one wants to learn.  Gives me a warm fuzzy.

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Even a 4 patch would be a good one.  She could keep it small with large blocks and make a tote bag.

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Johnya replied on Mon, Jul 18 2011 6:14 PM

My grandmother started me on hand piecing pretty young. If the young lady already has experience with her Sew Easy, I see no reason why she can't try some simple piecing. Maybe rectangles or squares at first would be best. I am not familiar with the Sew Easy but if it is capable, maybe she could do some cross-hatching machine quilting? Or maybe just outline her geometric shapes. If the machine is not capable of machine quilting, I would recommend tying it. Let's put it this way: my hand-quilting was so bad that my grandmother didn't trust me with that until I was almost 15! LOL

Good luck to you, her and her mom.

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I would have her dig through your scraps and just make a single square out of several fabrics.  Selecting the fabrics will be part of the fun.  Simple One-patch will teach her the basic skill of sewing together squares. 

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Katie replied on Mon, Jul 18 2011 7:28 PM

I have 2 little ones that want to learn to quilt/sew....  On Qnn.tv they have a show called kids sew and they have patterns you can order to make a pillow.  I've ordered 2  patterns.  You might want to try it.  It gives you hints on how to speak their language and make it fun...

Good Luck!

Katie

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First I want to say thank you for taking the time to pass on this tradition. I do think a pillow case would be a great first project. Enjoy and let us all know what you  decide on.

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gini replied on Mon, Jul 18 2011 9:05 PM

i was at the abby aldrich rockerfeller folk art museum a few years ago.  the work done by little girls of 5 or 6 was incredible.  we happened to be there when they were opening all the drawers for a girl scout group who were getting their badges in hand sewing.   the other hygienist and i looked at one another  and decided kids that age could learn to floss too.  we had been told in school  that kids couldn't learn to effectively floss until they were 11 or 12,   after seeing that exhibit, we said phooey on that.   kids can do a lot more than we expect of them.     gini

gini in north idaho

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Answered (Not Verified) Steph replied on Wed, Jul 20 2011 11:29 AM

Thank you all so much!  You've really put me on the right track.  The ideas, the books. . .all terrific.  I'm going to start her out on guided hand sewing to get her eye trained for straight stitching.  Then on to how to use the machine.  Then four patches and go from there.  I will post pictures!  Thanks so much, my quilting friends!!

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I was terribly intimidated at age 10 with matching seams, etc and frustrated my grandmother beyond words.  She went with embroidery and other needle crafts for me rather than quilting.  Therefore, I ended up as a crazy quilter (not so much precision for matching seams and lots of fun with the embellishing that I learned to love). 

I have worked with the local 4H group multiple times teaching crazy quilting and have had kids as young as 8 learn to CQ.  This could be a great project for her to do for her mother because of the silkie textures you can use but could also be done with all cottons or flannels.  I tie most of my CQs and do as little or as much embellishing as the project seems appropriate for.  She could do a simple 12 in square and turn it into a pillow. 

If you are unfamiliar with CQ and need a resource, there are several good books discussed in the CrazyQuilt group.  I am at work and drawing major blanks regarding names of books I have.

You might enjoy doing a small project together.  I love CQ and find it so rewarding to pull all the elements together.

Good luck.

Darlene

Darlene

from Western New York

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I started my granddaughter, age 7, on a quilt for her doll.  She picked out the material; I did the cutting; and she sewed everything together.  Straight block sewing.  Worked great!  Have fun.

Susan Larson

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PatW replied on Thu, Jul 28 2011 4:31 PM

How about a rag quilt? Doesn't have to have anything perfect and no 1/4 inch seams! I have made a couple in the past and they go so quickly! My 10 year old granddaughter doesn't enjoy long projects, and seeks instant gratification, so maybe even a doll size to begin would be good. Good luck!

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