Last weekend my husband and I were privileged to keep three of our granddaughters while their parents enjoyed an overnight date. As the girls’ were carrying in their belongings, I was reminded of “Grandma Hugs.”
The girls, big enough to carry their own belongings, arrived with their arms loaded with pillows, sleeping bags, back packs, and treasures. As my five-year-old granddaughter set her pillow and bag on the sofa during all the commotion, I saw her reach into her bag, pull something out, and squeal, “Look, Grandma, I brought my Grandma Hug!”
Grandma Hugs were one way I decided a few years ago to reach out to my young, long-distance grandchildren in an effort to build relationship with them across the miles. They are also one of my grandchildren’s favorite treasures! Each is well-worn now with use and love. One grandchild even took her Grandma Hug with her last year when she had surgery to remove her tonsils and adenoids. As the nurses prepped their patient for the surgery, mom attempted to take the Hug away. The nurses stopped her and allowed the Hug to accompany the six-year-old patient through the entire procedure!
Since the Hugs were so recently brought to mind through the love of a child, I thought I would share the directions with you so that you can make your own.
“Grandma Hug” Directions
- Sheet of 8 1/2 x 11” white paper (or Google an image of a hand outline and print)
- 2 pieces of “skin color” felt
- Thread to match felt
- 1/2 yard fabric of your choice
- Sewing machine or needle and thread to match fabric
- Use the pencil to trace around your hand on the white sheet of paper. (You can easily print out a copy of a hand outline instead.)
- Cut out the traced or printed hand to use as a pattern.
- Use the pattern to cut four (4) hands from the “skin color” felt.
- Sew two hands together using a sewing machine or hand stitch using a needle and thread. Use a 1/4” seam allowance to sew completely around the outside of the hands or use a zigzag stitch and stitch along the edges. (Sewing two hands together will make the hands sturdier.)
- Repeat for the other two hands that have been cut out. Put hands aside.
- Fold the fabric in half right sides together. Fold bringing cut side to cut side, not selvage to selvage. This will create longer arms for the “hug.”
- Sew along the cut edge creating a tube. Use a 5/8” seam allowance.
- Press the seam open.
- Turn the tube right side out.
- Leave selvage edges as is or trim using a pair of pinking shears.
- Run a gathering stitch completely around both open, selvage ends; about one (1) inch from the edge.
- Gather the stitching.
- Fit one hand into one gathered end of tube. Be sure the thumb is facing up. (Place pinky side of hand at the seam of the tube as a guide for placement).
- Use a regular length stitch to sew along the gather stitching. Trim threads.
- Repeat for the other hand/arm.
All that’s left to do, now, is package it up with love and mail it off to that very special grandchild who is desperate for a Hug from Grandma!