My class was studying the 50 states and it was Mother's Day, so what better idea than to make Tennessee state pillows for Mom? This project came together really fast and everyone loved it, especially the moms!
To help with the process, I prepped the pillow fabric. I used basically the same method for making the Heart in Hand quilt, so the kids knew just want to do.
First, I cut the pillow fabric into 8x8 squares. I made the state shape by enlarging a puzzle piece on the copier and then traced it onto Heat-n-Bond Lite then ironed the state shape onto the fabric.
The kids embroidered around the state using craft thread. Then, they added a tiny heart backed with Heat-n-Bond Ultra. This got ironed on right where Memphis is on the map! Since we used the Ultra Heat-n-Bond, there is no need to sew.
One of my students lives across the bridge in Arkansas, so she made a special one for her mom.
Next came machine sewing! I find that second grade is a good time to start machine sewing with kids. They have the "smarts" and coordination to machine sew without a lot of support. In my classroom, I had 2 machines set up, and I sat in the middle to guide and talk them through it. These pillows could easily be hand-sewn as well. To finish them, they stuffed them up and hand-sewed them closed using a whipstitch.
Basket of state pillows waiting to be wrapped.
We wrapped them with colorful sheets of tissue paper and wrote sweet letters to Mom. I know that they loved them! I even made a Texas state pillow for my own mom this year!