It’s never hard to come up with ideas for quilts and quilted items for myself. I could fill the house with bed quilts, pillows, throws, wall hangings, bags… well you get the idea. Sometimes coming up with an idea for someone else isn’t so easy – especially children and men.
More about men another time; my focus for the past couple of weeks has been on little boys. I have a great nephew and a godchild who have birthdays the same week. One just turned two and the other had his very first birthday this past weekend.
Though I always give books as gifts for children, I also like to include something more personal that I have made. This year as I was casting about for ideas, I remembered seeing a listing for chalk cloth on one of my favorite online fabric websites (eQuilter.com).
Chalk cloth is an oil cloth that has been specially coated so it behaves like a chalk board. I quickly ordered a yard and then set about trying to decide what to make with it. I posted a query on an eQuilter.com forum and received a recommendation for a wonderful book by Chris Lynn Kirsch called Snuggle-and-Learn Quilts for Kids.
In the book is a pattern for this adorable roll-up mat with built in holders for chalk and erasers. The strings that attach the erasers tie up the rolled mat into a neat bundle that will fit in the stroller, or in mom’s all-purpose carry bag.
I found a really cute licensed Thomas the Train print for my grandnephew who is a bit train crazy, and for little Sullivan (we call him Sully) a dog themed print since he lives with three pups.
I suspect this toy may be a bit old for Sully, but of course we all think he is quite advanced (J) so I expect he will grow into it quickly. And I’m hoping both Mom’s will find the Roll-n-Go Blackboard a helpful management tool while they are sitting in a restaurant and hoping to get at least one bite of their meal before it is stone cold.