June 11, 2012

Handicraft for Girls: Children in Native Costume Doll's Quilt Pt. 1

Hullo! Our next project is from the book Handicraft for Girls by Idabelle McGlauflin, published in 1910.

In Chapter 2 of the book, an embroidery pattern of 4 children in native costume are provided and to be used in the different exercises.

Each design is embroidered with running stitches on a 6" x 8" piece of unbleached muslin. Now, it says to use "colored thread No. 50", and once again I have no idea what color that will be so enlightenment is welcome of course.

When done with the designs, we will continue to make the elective exercise which is a doll's quilt:

To attach the designs together, it states that they are to be "overhanded together" by turning a quarter-inch fold on the long side of both pieces and basting the folded pieces together and overhand.

The stitch is not shown in the book, only described so I went to look for an illustration and found this from ChestofBooks.com. It is the overhand stitch as described and illustrated in School of Needlework. A Course Study in Sewing designed for use in Schools:

Should you wish to make this too, a pattern will be provided after each part every Monday. We will begin this week with Child in Native Costume No. 1:

Have a lovely week ahead everyone and keep on stitching!

Part 2.


  1. Do they say what "native" culture each costume is from?
    What an interesting find...

  2. Hi Lara, It doesn't seem to say where, or even describe the design at least, just talks about exercises using the pattern titled as so. Since it is a school instruction book, I am guessing it reflects on other lessons the kids had at that time so no descriptions necessary perhaps? These old instruction books are quite vague, some even verge on the poetic in describing how to do something. The language also reflects the era so its' quite a time machine to read these.

  3. Wow! Published
    in 1910? That was awesome. If the author only elaborated where the children’s
    ‘native’ costumes did came from. But thanks for posting this!

  4. Yes, I wish they did too! No. 2 is specially curious as to where. Thank you for appreciating!

  5. Wow, that is very strange. These look a lot like an illustration by Jessie Willcox Smith. The rhyme was called "Foreign Children" by Robert Louis Stevenson. Here's a link (at least, I hope the link works) to the illustration: http://www.flickr.com/photos/38275730@N04/3621731823/

  6. thank you for this information Cathy!! You solved the mystery! :-)

  7. Each and every design looks pretty unique and different is well from others, but it is an interesting is well.

  8. Cute ones! love the different designs and wonder how gorgeous these will look in the that! Loving these colours also!