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Prairie Cottage Dolls


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Pattern Details

By the time the Civil War came about, women of America were experiencing enough prosperity among the middle classes to make it possible for the latest fashions of the civilized world to come into their hands. Later on, new dyes and new fabric production methods would make the most fashionable of fabrics readily available, even at the "general store" level. So began the era of the crinoline. Sue and her daughter Sally lived alone in a cottage on Main Street in Anytown, USA. The year was 1862, and the Civil War was in motion. Sue's husband, Paul, was far away, fighting the war. Sue's daily life was one of hard work, prayer and loneliness; but also of family love, creativity and dreams of better times to come. The days were taken up with the simple doings of life such as washing, cooking, mending, shopping, gardening, sewing, visiting neighbors and attending church and choir practice. Quilts and blankets were badly needed in the war effort, so there were always quilts to piece and stitch. Today, we have much that is written of the history of the Civil War. Girls of the time probably had dolls like these to play with, hand-stitched by their mothers. The fabrics of the days long past, have now been reproduced so we have a wide array of lovely colors and patterns from which to choose. I hope you will enjoy sewing these lovely dolls and that your daughters will enjoy playing with them for a long time to come.

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Prairie Cottage Corner
Prairie Cottage Corner
My grandmother, Ruby Steele, lived to be more than 100 years old. In her retired years, she made a lot of quilts (1940's - 1980's). Some have survived her. They were all hand machine quilting at all. We did, once, get her a nice White sewing machine, but she never used it. It was both treadle and electric, but she never bonded with the idea of machine quilting. I thought, "How does she do it? I'll never be able to sit still long enough to hand stitch anything." But, time passes and our perspectives change. My mother loved embroidery. She never quilted. She also crocheted and knitted and taught me those things. When Mom passed away, she left an afghan and some pillow cases that needed finishing. I'm sorry to say I haven't finished the afghan but I have finished one of the sets of pillow cases. When I finished the pillowcases, about ten years ago, I decided I would make quilts for all the grandkids and some neices and nephews. What happened to me, that I decided that?!!! Changes, I guess. I was still working full time and decided to add a new career? Well, I haven't stopped stitching since then.