For Mother's Day, I thought I'd share a hand-sewing project that I learned recently from my mother, Anita Sennott, who learned it from her mother, Anna Kruse (nee Koestner).
When I visited my mother in Florida during March, I asked her where she
got the cover on one of her living room chairs. I was really taken with those little circles.
She said she made it. So then I asked about the pattern, but she said there was no pattern. She learned to make these fabric disks from her mother, who stitched them together to make pillow covers and other household items. I was touched to see this tangible connection to the grandmother I never knew (she died when my mom was only 14).
Mom offered to show me how to make them. She didn't have any fabric on hand, so we planned to go to Jo-Ann Fabrics later in the week. Unfortunately, we never made it due to a medical procedure being delayed (not a fun story, though it had a good outcome). I had to return to Massachusetts without learning to make the fabric disks.
A week or so later, an envelope arrived in the mail. Inside was a disk and instructions typed up by my mother. With her permission, I'm sharing them here:
It was brilliant of her to leave the disk unfinished, so that I could open it up and see how it was made.
I found her instructions easy to follow. To make one, I used a cereal bowl and a disappearing ink pen to mark the circle.
You can make the disks any size. My bowl, which was about 5 1/4 inches in diameter, produced a disk about 2 1/4 inches in diameter.
After cutting the fabric, you simply thread a needle, knot the thread, fold over 1/4 inch or less of fabric, and start stitching. I found it easiest to gather the fabric as I went, rather than wait to gather it at the end.
When you're back where you started, pull the thread tight tight and tie a knot. The photo below shows the difference in size between the cut fabric and the finished disk.
Join them together with a few small stitches to make whatever you like: garlands, pillow covers, chair covers, book covers ...
Happy Mother's Day, Mom! Thank you for letting me share your creativity on my blog.