I’ve had this project in mind for ages, and finally HAD to make it. I had casually mentioned to Anneliese one day that I was going to make her a stove. Every day after that, she would tell me as she played with her toys, “Mama make stove!”
So… she knows how to get me moving. It still took me a while, doing the sewing in quiet stolen moments here and there, but now it’s finished and she LOVES it.
This stove is basically a mini-quilt, and includes ties for rolling and storing, or for throwing in a bag to take to grandparents’ houses, the front yard, or wherever your little chef wants to cook up a storm!
No, it isn’t realistic (anyone have a floral stove??). The knobs don’t turn, and the burners don’t glow. But this is a place where realism isn’t necessary. Our kids can exercise their imaginations, and practice their (novice) culinary skills at the same time. You should see my daughter jiggling veggies in a pan as she sautes them!
In case you’d like to make a fabric stove for your little one, I’ve made a step-by-step tutorial! I hope it helps you!
1. Find some fabric for the burners and knobs. Trace some circles onto the wrong side of the fabrics, using a water-soluble pen or chalk. I made one of the burners smaller, for a simmer burner. But yours can be all the same size if you want.
2. Iron on some wonder under fusible web. Not the interfacing that is only fusible on one side… but the web, which is just like ironing on a layer of glue. (My iron really is pink.)
3. Remove the paper backing from the web, and cut out your shapes. (You’ll be able to see your trace lines through the web.)
4. Arrange your burners and knobs onto a rectangle of another fabric, which will be your stovetop.
5. Being careful not to move them from their positions, iron the circles into place, following the directions on the Wonder Under.
6. Using embroidery thread, blanket stitch around the edges of the circles. This is optional, but will make it more attractive (in my opinion) and sturdier when you wash it.
7. Also optional, at this point you can add more embellishment. I used a chain stitch to make swirls on the burners, and sewed buttons onto the knobs.
8. Layer your stovetop with some batting and backing, the same size or a bit bigger (you can trim later).
9. Quilt your layers however you’d like. I’m not really a quilter, so I just made little x’s on the top, and tied off the threads on the bottom using a square knot. I know my mom had quilts that were made like this when I was a kid, and I always thought they were neat. I left about 1/4 inch of the thread on each knot.
10. Add binding to the edges, and be sure to sew in a couple of strips (binding which was sewn closed, or ribbons, twill tape, or anything really) for rolling up the stovetop.
11. Now you can roll it up and tie! Add a couple of wooden spoons under the bow, and you have yourself a self-wrapping gift!
12. The most important step — play!
I hope you and your little ones enjoy your mini-quilt stovetop!
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