Friday, April 19, 2013

little one's needle book, part one

 i mentioned that daughter #4 (who is newly 5) was in need of a place to store her needles and that we were improvising a felt needle book together. this is phase one of the needle book we are creating.

for now, she sews solely with tapestry needles because they are large, easy-to-handle, and quite blunt. the largest needle is too large and blunt to pierce her felt, so i cut a square of burlap for her to stitch down to the felt.
 we worked the first row together as she got used to this type of stitching. i had her backstitch using the large burlap threads as a guide. we went in all the holes under the outer most thread, working along each side. when the first green thread ran out, she chose purple to continue with. once we completed the outer square, we did a running stitch (every other hole) along the next inner thread for a bit more stability.

then i removed the outer thread (because it wasn't fastened down) and trimmed up the edges.
so now we have her largest tapestry needle tucked in to the burlap patch and the thinner needle sits in the felt.

phase two of the needle book will be cutting another, slightly smaller, square of felt to form a "page" for more needle storage. or, we could use this as the page and create a new cover. this is a project that can be revisited and added to over time as her skills and interest grow.

her interest in getting this one patch on came and went. it was slow and rather laborious for her to work with the felt, which could be tough to pull through sometimes. we stopped whenever she wanted to and i asked permission to complete some of it myself. i worked 2 sided alone and we did 2 together. being relaxed about it and not pushing her hard helps her keep a good attitude about sewing. i'm pleased with the outcome.

a few years ago, daughter #2 made some needle books for the older siblings for Christmas. at the time she was only 8 and new to sewing, so looking back i am impressed with what she accomplished. this is the one she made for her older sister:
 the cover is embellished with a contrasting felt square, stitching, a cute button, and some ribbon. it's also cut with pinking sheers for interest.
inside there is a felt "page" sewn in with embroidery floss worked in a running stitch. very simple.

eventually we might get daughter #4's book in to something that resembles this more decorative piece. but for now, what we have started is functional and has been a venue for developing some of her skills.

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