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!
My granddaughter has learning disabilities and I thought her at 9 years old. I started her on a quilt for her dolls. We cut squares. There was only straight sewing and she tied it. . I took her to my quilt guild and she showed it at sew and tell. Now she always wants to sew and she is fast.
Way to go Nicole! It should be 'learning abilities'! We could all do without the 'dis..' in our lives. A number of years ago I taught a girl with one eye to cross stitch and she did a beautiful job! I thought she would get frustrated and angry because she didn't have any depth perception but it was something she wanted to learn to do and she did it well! I guess she showed me what happens when we try to limit someones 'abliities'. Tell your granddaughter she is not just learning to sew but she is learning a dying art - quilt making. I am a first generation, as far back as I know, quilter in my family and feel so fortunate to have such talented and experienced ladies as all of you to help me along with my craft.
This is a wonderful opportunity for you and the young lady. I worked with some students this year making quilts for a crisis center. Quilt Daddy is right keep it simple. If your heart is leaning towards a true quilt then I would recommend something like yellow brick road. It is simple, straight seams and makes up quickly.
How about a raggy? Let her cut up some of her old jeans (and perhaps some of her dad's with his permission) and then back it with flannel of her choosing. Six inch squares with 5/8" seams go quick and they are forgiving both when she is sewing and when she is dragging it to sleep-overs. Every age loves raggies!
As a matter of fact, a 10 year old just visited our Senior Centre quilting group with her grandmother, who is a member. We had a teddy bear quilt on the go...very easy rail fence like pattern with little appliqued bears. Our little student talked about her project between sessions and wanted to come back...to a senior centre...amazing. After three weeks in a row, she is finishing the mitred borders next week.
My point is that, if a child is interested, time between sessions is good as it promotes anticipation. This simple thing...anticipation of personal progress towards a goal...is something I find is missing in a lot of modern life. It is good for character building and something that quilting teaches. So by all means teach the child, but check that she is interested in the project itself during the first session. nothing is better than doing something you like or worse than doing something you do not like. There is no way of telling until you try...so try everything once before you make up your mind.
I used this strategy with 3 special needs girls. I have a stash of charm squares (5" squares) that I piled in the middle of the table, then I let them try different arrangements. I gave suggestions, showed them some ideas, and specified how many squares across and down, but tried to let them make it their own design. Then I sewed the squares into rows, and let them sew the rows together. Then we tied the quilt, and I bound it. You want their first experience to be fun and for them to have something they are proud of at the end!
My grandson, age 8.5 yrs, was interested in my quilting so this summer I decided I would teach him to sew. I have a new Janome that is perfect for a beginner so I set him up with that. He was interested in what all the stitches looked like that show up on the right side of the machine so i gave him a square of fabric large enough to become a pillow later. I let him experiment with the various stitches, deciding where he wanted to start and stop each stitch pattern and once he was happy knowing what they looked like, I wrote his name on the fabric in large capital letters and had him choose a stitch and sew over the letters to create his name. Of course he loved seeing his name on the fabric! Then we put that square together with another and he learned to sew a straight seam. He had a ball stuffing the "pillow" and then we finished it up with the closing. I had him do the straight stitching on the outside of the pillow, not the inside, with a different color fabric and marked it 2 " from the edge. This made a border around the outside of the pillow which looks great. He is so proud of his pillow. Next we're making a simple "stuffie", stuffed animal, then on to shorts at his request.
Marsha, that is great! Lucky grandson to have you. We'd love to see a picture of the pillow he made.