Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Using "Leaving Gee's Bend" in the classroom

A friend said her son's 4th grade class had used Leaving Gee's Bend by Irene Latham as the basis for an Alabama history project. They read the book and had parents help in the classroom teaching the students to hand piece a 9-patch quilt block. The blocks were then pieced together into a quilt (actually each student ended up taking their own home. I will make them into a quilt.)

I am loving this idea and the teacher said that would be wonderful.

My concern is about the book. Have any of you read it? There is a small bit about childbirth and I am a little worried that it might offend some students/parents. Any thoughts on this? I am hoping to be able to have several parents read the book (it's a fast read) and get their feedback.

Now to get a concrete plan together so the our teacher can work it into the class plan.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Finished Teacher Quilts

I think these turned out better than any of us expected. The teachers were floored and thrilled and they cried a little too! Definitely a sign of a great gift!

(wrapped and ready for delivery)

I did turn them over to Meg to quilt. She did a great job working around the art work and had them done super fast. Thank you!!

The colors held fast except that a mild detergent or maybe none should be used. There was some little fading of the colors but more so on the signatures. I had intended to go back over them all again but forgot and ran out of time.

We also hung them up in the hall for the last two days of school so the students could see how it all came together. They loved seeing their art worked into a quilt. That puts me to mind of another project (more on that later.)

Without further ado, here they are.

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Monday, May 24, 2010

Blogger's Quilt Festival--Spring 2010

I have been out of the blogging loop for a few weeks and just now see that we are up again for another fantastic round of quilt inspiration with the Blogger's Quilt Festival Spring 2010!

Thank you Amy for organizing us again!

I have had a hard time choosing a quilt for the round. One of the beauties of blogging is its journalistic effect. I had to go back through all the older posts to see what I had made. I have chosen my Dad's quilt that I made last summer.

I have been quilting for eight years and haven't made him one yet. So this is it. I chose batiks because he spends his winters in Mexico and I wanted something cheerful and fun. This is also one of the quilts that I made with the Old Red Barn Co. quilt along last August.

I adore this quilt. I've never really worked with batiks before and their vibrancy really gave the quilt the feeling I was going for. The back is by far the biggest departure for me. I love the way it turned out. The only thing I would have changed is that I wish I had made it one row wider. It is just a bit short for their bed (which I had only intended it as a throw!)

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Monday, May 10, 2010

Teacher Retirement Quilts

This year we have two teachers retiring and I wanted to do something special for them. I was inspired by this quilt. I used the fabric pastels and so far they seem to be holding up. Once I ironed them they stopped smudging and seem set. I'll know for sure after I was them.Do not buy them on line. Your local craft store most likely carries them. I found them at Hobby Lobby with the t-shirts and fabric markers. They were $3.99 for the 15 ct and I used a 40% coupon.

My original idea was to have each student do 2-6" blocks with a garden theme (flower, butterfly, bird, tree etc.) Then I got to thinking about how much sewing that would mean for me. 137 blocks x 2. I only had a week to get the blocks done and the quilts made. I know that with 4 kids there was no way for me to get it done. So I opted for large panels. The first one I did 14x70 and had two classes share the panels and sashed them with "grass" in a green batik. On the bottom panel I made a large label of sorts.

For the second quilt I had more of a raised bed garden idea. The smaller panels I did one for each class (12x25). I like the way they turned out. The backings are simple white with a pieced strip. I'll post the finished product when I get them back this week.

I've sent them to a friend to quilt for me. I have never done that before and there is a sense of giving something up by not actually doing the quilting myself. I know they we be great but it was an interesting feeling I had not expected.
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Pillows, Apron, Babies

Finally decorated the newly covered couch with a fun throw pillow. I've made another one since in the same colors but wavy lines. Maybe I'll get a picture of them when I make more throws. I took on the invisible zipper for this pillow using these directions. If you want to see the whole couch you can see it at our family blog.

Yet another apron. You will see many of these this year. Last year our birthday gift was a pillowcase and this year it's aprons. We chose lizards for the birthday boy. Maybe I should make one for Ian whose 7th birthday is Wednesday....Hmm. Yep, probably should do that.

Also this past weekend there was a baby shower for a girl. I have done a lot of boy gifts lately so it was a nice and welcome change to make something girly. A diaper clutch. Two reversible bibs. A bird (link is on the left) to chew on and a ribbon ball. The kids want me to make many more balls for them to play with. This was a quick toy to make. I was just doing a test run but next time I will add more ribbons and maybe in all the seams.
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