A creative mess is better than tidy idleness. ~Author Unknown
Any day spent sewing, is a good day. ~Author Unknown
I love sewing and have plenty of material witnesses. ~Author Unknown

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Preschool Teacher Gift

Last month my daughter completed her first year of school.  It didn't technically count seeing how it was preschool for three year olds or K3.

Her teacher was an amazing lady who made every penny of her private school tuition worth it.  What we didn't know until the end of the year was that her husband's job moved him back in November.  The teacher stayed back to both finish the year with her students and to allow her two kids to finish the year.  We are so thankful she did.  In the years past she taught K4 and was able watch the children grow throughout the years. 

On Kaitlyn Joy's first day of school older kids were popping their heads in to tell their old teacher hello.  I quickly realized Kj wouldn't be able to see her teacher later for quick hellos.  Nor would Mrs M be able to see her last 12 grow up. 

I sent an envelope of paper to school asking Mrs M to trace each child's hand.  I then traced the hands onto
 Wonder Under, cut them out, ironed them to green fabric, then cut them out leaving a 1/8" edge all the way around.  I arranged the hands then ironed them on and sewed them down one by one.  I left the 1/8" raw edge so it could fray.

Once the tree was done I finished the outer edge of the quilt top with different strip lengths.  In the first photo you can see an orange square at the bottom.  The Amish put an odd colored patch in their personal quilts to remind themselves that no one is perfect.  I thought that was neat so I added the orange patch to the quilt.  Once the quilt top was done I used the traced hand prints as templates to trace each child's hand print around the tree with blue washable ink.  I also put their name next to their handprint.  I used free motion quilting to add the hands and names to the quilt.
To quilt the outer edge, along the bottom I put, "Mrs M-------'s 2010-2011 Class".  I learned something when doing the year...  it's hard to sew numbers where they are joined and don't look odd.  Starting on the right side and going counterclockwise I sewed a note to the teacher thanking her for planting the seeds of faith into our children and the "address" to the verse about how the mustard seed is one of the smallest yet it grows into a tree.  She loved it!

The last photo is of Kj getting ready to take the quilt to school.  It was the second to the last day and everyone wore pajamas.
EDIT: I forgot to mention I sewed the names, hand prints and boarder note in thread that matched the tree background.  I didn't want the quilting to stand out even though it was special to her.  I figure it was something she could look for and discover.  I had both teachers and the ladies in the front office telling me they saw and loved it.  I told them I was taking bids for who would be Kj's teacher next year. =)  Hey, I have to bring that tuition down somehow.  Hehehe...

*Sorry, I've been MIA ladies.  We had a rough first five months of 2011.  I ended up not making the baby blankets I posted about probably back in March.  I also stopped crocheting the blanket.  At the end of March I had a missed miscarriage.  It was rough time.  Two weeks after the D&C I got the test results back and learned the little girl appeared fine, but the little boy had sever problems.  I'm thankful God knows better then I do and decided to take them both back with him.  My son, if he had made it full term and survived birth, would/could have died minutes after birth, perhaps made it close to a year, or would have been severally handicapped and died at some point during his childhood.  I'm better with all of this now, but wanted you all to know why I've been MIA.


NadineC said...

What a very sweet idea with the hands tree - I love it! So sorry about your miscarriage. May you continue to heal - it sounds like your faith has helped you to have a wonderful acceptance of it.

Jindi's Cottage said...

Love the tree quilt...what a fantastic idea and it looks so great...how lovely for the teacher to have such a personal reminder of her last class at that school...you are a braver woman than I machine quilting not only letters but numbers!!!

Anorina @SameliasMum said...

A lovely quilt. I'm sure it will be treasured for years to come.

Unknown said...

what an awesome gift!!

Great job! :)

KatieQ said...

Your quilt was a wonderful gift. My favorite gifts when I was a nursery school teacher were homemade items that were reminders of the children. Using their hands for the tree was inspired.
I'm so sorry for your loss. I'm glad your faith is helping to sustain you.

Val said...

Bless your heart. I am so sorry about your babies but you are so right HE knows better than us. Your quilt is wonderful. I LOVE this idea! I wanted to do a quilt with each square with my Grands handprints and footprints. I better hurry. They are growing up fast!