When I was a kid I was good at my "please and thank you's" but whenever it came time for a Thanksgiving round table of what we were thankful for, I froze up. It wasn't that I didn't have anything to say, it was just that I hated being put on the spot with all those eyes on me, even if they were the loving eyes of my family members. My mind would go blank and my heart would start racing until I managed to utter some sort of sentence which usually involved what was right in front of me. If I'd had a little more time and space to come to it on my own terms I probably wouldn't have been thankful for just "pie". . . although I'm always thankful for pie :)
So this year I decide to make. . .
. . . a gratitude leaf garland. . .
. . . with little pockets, perfect for hiding thank you notes on your own time and in your own space. . .
. . . that can be read together at the table on Thanksgiving day for all the lovely gratitude without any of the stress.
- Scrap fabric (a bit of felt is good to mix in, particularly for the pockets as it doesn't fray)
- Ribbon or rope that you can sew through
- Needle and thread or a sewing machine
- Paper and pens or pencils (for secret note writing)
Pick out your favorite leaf shape and draw it onto a piece of paper. If you prefer more of a direct pattern you could use a large maple leaf and trace it, or use one of the leaf templates from the back of our book.
Once you have your shape, cut it out and use it as a pattern to cut your shapes out of your scrap fabric. You can make your garland as long or short as you like and the length will dictate the number of leaves you need to cut out.
If you fabric is very wrinkled like mine was, you may want to iron the leaves before you begin sewing.
I only made pockets on some of the leave, but you could add it to all of them if you'd like. To do this, simply cut a shape out of felt that fits nicely on your leaves and sew along three sides leaving the top open (see image above).
Once you have all your pockets in place attach the leaves to your ribbon or rope. I chose to sew a line of leaves with the rope on top and then go back over and add a second layer of the pocket leaves over the rope to make a fuller garland, but one row would be lovely as well.
Hang your garland and leave a stack of small pieces of scrap paper and a pen or pencil nearby so your kiddos can sneak thank you notes in there whenever they would like to.
*Last time in Craft and Activities: Our New Lookbook is Here!