One of my Christmas gifts was a pattern book by Linda Halpin, Quilting with Laura – Patterns Inspired by the “Little House on the Prairie” Series, published by RCW Publishing Company.
My youngest daughter, who is an admirer of Laura Ingalls Wilder and her books, gave me the pattern and I considered making the quilt for her, although I knew this type of quilt was not her decorating style. Surprisingly, she volunteered that she would like to have the quilt with all its scrappy blocks, so I started getting the fabrics together. The pattern is for a large 37″x46″ wall hanging and I added borders to make it large enough for a single bed.
The quilt includes blocks actually mentioned in the television series as well as traditional blocks whose names reflect events in Laura’s time. Instructions and templates are given for 14 blocks of varying sizes and a diagram is given for the layout of the quilt. My main complaint is that no measurements were given for the many types of sashing used to separate blocks. I was able to work it out but beginners might have a bit of a problem.
I’m not good at hand sewing, so all of the piecing and quilting were done on my Bernina. After the quilt was completed, I made a label for each block, printing on fabric and then making a frame for each from backing fabric. Each label, sewn on the back of the quilt at the spot where the block appears on the front, gave the name of the block for my non-quilting daughter and a brief explanation of why the block was chosen. Example: Nine Patch – a block that Mary was able to make even after losing her eyesight.
The most difficult block, and my favorite, was Doves in the Window, reportedly the pattern used by Laura in her wedding quilt.
The patterns in the book are:
- Nine Patch
- Indian Trails
- Flying Geese
- Corn and Beans
- Prairie Queen
- Trail of the Covered Wagon
- Bear’s Paw
- Log Cabin
- Doves in the Window
My daughter tells me this quilt with low loft batting has replaced her handmade, very heavy afghan and is just as warm.