Saturday, June 16, 2012

Cruisin' with Nana

We are lucky enough to have my Nana living with us. She loves playing with the children and usually has some sort of little treat for them when they go to visit (which is everyday, if not multiple times a day.) For my nana’s birthday I made up this little seat cover so that she could safely take Grace for rides in her walker. It’s been so cute to see them whizz around the back yard, having a lovely time together.

I thought I would take a moment to tell you about my Nana. She is the most amazing seamstress and has sewn her whole life. She altered her first dress when she was twelve years old and practically made all of her own clothing from then on. She came out from Finland to Australia with her family when my dad was young and continued sewing from home while raising a large family. Many nights she sewed well into the early hours finishing off wedding dresses or special outfits.

Growing up, I spent nearly every Sunday afternoon at Nana and Grandpa’s house. I remember excitedly looking through her Burda magazines, picking out dresses for church and then going into her sewing room and selecting the fabric. Her sewing room was bursting with fabric... beautiful, expensive fabric. Once she made me a gorgeous black cocktail dress from detailed raw silk fabric that was $500 a metre. We must have kept her busy, my five sisters and I, as I cannot remember wearing an outfit to church that was not made by my dear Nana.  

She was quite the perfectionist, and I remember her carefully pinning dresses to my shape, her fingers working quickly, pulling and smoothing into place. Even now, if I show her some of my work that isn't quite right she advises me to redo it, or I wont be happy. She loves seeing what I create and is really encouraging. Occasionally Nana still fires up her sewing machine. and it's quite the beast. I thought mine was noisy, but hers is a fully industrial sewing machine and has a big motor on it. Nana paid quite a lot for it 30 years ago and it still works beautifully. There is so much I admire about my Nana, including her generosity, hard work and sewing talent. I'm so glad that my children get to spend time with their Great Grandmothers (we are lucky enough to have my other grandmother living just around the corner too).

To make the padded baby seat for the walker I just sewed 2 half yard cuts, with two layers of cotton batting in between, and some ties to tie it to Nana's walker.  I kind of just measured and cut and then measured and cut until everything was in the right spot.

It's soft and snuggly and quite safe to go cruising around.


And just letting you know, we have some university students from China staying with us for the next little while. It's fun having such a full house, but it's also a lot of work cooking and cleaning for 8 people (not including Nana), so you'll understand if I'm not on the blog all that much (I have to cook a decent meal every night, and clean the house every day ... shock horror... so that doesn't leave much time for crafting - but I'm sure I'll manage to sneak in a little bit.)


  1. what a wonderful pic of the 2 'girls' 4 generations apart, how lucky they both too

  2. What a wonderful tribute to your grandmother - aren't grandmothers wonderful? Hopefully Grace will remember these times she got to spend with her great-grandmother!

  3. You are so blessed to have your grandmother and great-grandmother around you. You told such a beautiful story about her too. I really enjoyed hearing about her.

  4. I'm a first timer to your blogger and I love it. I'm looking at making a quilt for my daughter and after asking around Kathryn H. suggested that yours was the blog to look at. Your quilts are amazing and just beautiful. Your work is wonderful. Love this post. I had my great great grandmother alive until she was 99, and my grandmother and great grandmother were also alive. 5 generations which was pretty amazing. I also love your insert that you made the the wheelie walker to sit the baby in ... what a great idea. Leonie (Lotti).

  5. My Grannie is 99 I'd love to see E & R cruisin with her but she lives in Scotland. Your photos of her and Grace are so beautiful!!!


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