Monday, June 20, 2011

Growing Up Sew Liberated

We've ALL been enjoying Meg's book

I am completely honored, and quite honestly - giddy as as school girl, to be one of the stops on Meg's blog tour for her new book Growing Up Sew Liberated: Making Handmade Clothes & Projects for Your Creative Child

I first came across Meg about 2 1/2 years ago when our mutual friend hosted a nature table exchange called Seasons Round. I was quite lucky, to say the least, to have the gifted Meg as my exchange partner. I can remember my family and I were about to move cross country when the exchange was going on so I had to mail out her package months in advance. I think she liked it, though (Finn, too!). She made the most beautiful and thoughtful package for us - including her first needle felted art and, oh my, is it beautiful. We still treasure it and get excited when Autumn comes around so we may bring it all out again.

I plan on making lots of these for baby L when he's just a little bit bigger

As soon as Meg's book arrived at my doorstep I, after letting out a squeal, devoured it from start to finish. I just couldn't put it down (I even had to fend off both my girls who wanted to steal it from me so they could make a list of things they wanted me to make from it. They eventually won and I'm sure you'll be seeing those projects soon!). I wanted to drop everything and just start making every single project in there. The title alone really spoke to me 'Making Handmade Clothes and Projects for Your Creative Child'. I think it's safe to say that my girls are creative in every sense of the word, and the idea of putting so much thought and love into creations that help them create - perfection! Of course it doesn't surprise me that Meg would think of something like that!! Just look at her posts on her blog, and you'll see how much thought she puts into everything she does.

This book is not only great resource for patterns and projects but also wisdom on family life, rhythm (one of my favorite topics),and teaching - to name just a few.

These make me want to forget my fear of knitted fabrics.

I recently had the chance to ask Meg a few questions and I am excited to share her answers with all of you.
.:Nicole:. I love how you incorporated both Montessori and Waldorf teachings in this book. You have really shown me how well they go together.
How did you come across both teachings?

.:Meg:. My history with Montessori goes way back - I was a Montessori child myself, so a lot of the philosophy is quite ingrained in my being. I rediscovered my own Montessori roots after teaching 5th grade at a public school in New York City straight out of college. The teach-to-the-test way of doing things at that school really didn't fit with my own definition of what it meant to be educated. Did education mean learning the basics just well enough to get a grade on a test? Did it mean teaching children to go through life with external motivations only (such as test scores and other scholastic accolades?) No. For me, being well educated means that you have a passion for life and possess the skills and the motivation to follow your own path of discovery, whether that path be in academics, farming, the arts, movement, mothering, etc.

My foray into Waldorf began through the blog world, and reading blogs like yours, Nicole! I was very inspired by the beauty and the warm, intentional parenting that came through. I really enjoyed reading "Heaven on Earth" and "Simplicity Parenting". I admit that I have only a cursory understanding of the philosophy behind Waldorf education, but I do embrace the slower pace, the reverence for nature, and the focus on beautifying the child's environment that is prevalent in Waldorf education.

.:Nicole:. That is truly profound. We could really use more teachers that think the way you do. And blush, I don't even know what to say! What type of schooling do you think you will choose for your children?

.:Meg:. If it were up to me, I would unschool/Montessori/Waldorf. But really, it's my children who will ultimately decide what kind of education is best for them. We do intend to homeschool, and Patrick and I will do that together. We each have slightly different views of what an ideal "school day" might look like in the future, so we'll definitely have an eclectic approach.

In the 3-6 year age range, which is the age I am certified to teach in a Montessori classroom, I will incorporate certain aspects of the curricula into our daily lives, skipping the parts that require expensive materials. From the Waldorf tradition, I will bring in art, a reverence for free, imaginative play, and an awareness of nature and the passing of the seasons.

I think we'll call our educational path "discovery-based learning." While I will guide my children's learning experiences, I will also feel free to wander down side trails that my boys find interesting.

The girls' number one request a papoose!

.:Nicole:. That sounds like the absolute perfect way to educate. I truly admire how much thought you put into it. Now just one last question, please.
Where did you get all of the beautiful fabric you used in the book? ahem - more of a personal question, especially that ladybug print fabric for the scavenger hunt bag?

.:Meg:. I got my fabric from these sources:, and Most of the prints are from Purl or Spoonflower, and the fabric I used for the scavenger hunt bag is Echino Ladybug Circles from the 2009 collection. It is likely out of stock at most larger online fabric boutiques, but you might find someone selling it on Etsy or elsewhere. It's such a bummer when prints like that are retired - the print runs are usually quite limited.

Thank you again, Meg, for including me in your tour and for taking the time to stop by. I always feel refreshed and inspired after visiting with you, even if just in 'blog form'.


Meg is kindly offering all of you a 20% discount on everything in her shop, including her new book! Just simply use the coupon code FrontierDreams when you check out.The code is good until the 26th of June.

To learn more about Meg's new book and to see some fun projects made from it, please visit her other tour stops below. Thanks again Meg!

Growing Up Sew Liberated Blog Tour













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