My five year old has been asking for a sewing machine for a while now, and this past Christmas we finally made it happen.
(For the record, I think she is a little young for it. I can't plug her into the machine and let her sew, while I do my own thing. I pretty much sit with her and walk her through almost every seam she sews. It's tedious, and definitely takes a lot of patience, but I think it is a good thing. I probably need to spend more time with my kids individually, so this is a start.)
But, we finished her first quilt and she is so proud of herself. She told me that I no longer need to make quilts for her, she can make them herself.
She really only made the quilt top, but she feels like she did the whole thing herself. I let her pick whatever fabric she wanted...(this is such a hard thing to do. I soooooo badly want to give suggestions, but I try to keep my opinions to myself). Of course kids pick the cute fabrics, and what appeals to them at that very moment (not what necessarily matches), and we end up with a quilt salad--a little bit of everything. And it ends up looking great!
We (I) cut the squares out at 15inches (the biggest square ruler I have), so we could make a quilt that was big enough but not completely overwhelming for her. She sewed the whole top together in one sitting! It was perfect for her. I think if she had to walk away from it, she might've become discouraged or lost interest.
She picked the backing too. Purple and red. Red=her favorite color and purple=her brothers favorite color. I was so happy to use up that purple fabric. I bought it to line a halloween witch cape for my daughter, but she wanted nothing to do with a cape after I had already purchased the fabric, of course. I don't know if I'd have ever used it otherwise. It's really bright.
For the binding, she wanted scrappy. (I don't know when I first started sewing the remains of my bindings together to make scrappy binding, but it's such a great way to make scrappy binding, and it's perpetually...virtually never ends.) I think it adds to the quilt salad perfectly.