Gift Inspiration Day Thirteen: Checkerboard Table Topper + Bucket o’ Beans

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When I was a child, my mom found a checker’s game that was intended to be played on the floor.  It included a carpet that was approximately 36″ x 36.”  We would lay it out on the floor, get comfy and play a couple of games.  When we were coming up with gift ideas for the blog, I decided to try to recreate our  childhood checker game.

as a table topper

I picked two fat quarters that match my living room.  It’s always available for the kids to use, with the game pieces stored in a fabric pouch.  But, when not in use, it doubles as a table topper or as part of my decorations on my display case.  I also decreased the size to approximately 22.5″ x 22.5.”

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Another option is to choose fat quarters that match a little girl’s room.  When not in use as a checkerboard, the topper can be used as a doll quilt.  Use little boy themed fat quarters, and it becomes a playmat when not in use.

The pattern for the Checkboard Table Topper is free with purchase both in-store and on-line.

Since it’s Black Friday and everyone is out looking for great deals…here’s a bonus idea for you today.

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Do you remember playing with bean bags?  They were our favorite toys at school when we were forced to play inside due to the weather.  My children were given a set of beanbags when they were younger, and they still find ways to play with them.   A bucket of beanbags is the perfect gift for any young child.  It’s also a great gift for teachers.  They are fast to make, take very little supplies and are so easy, you won’t even need a pattern.

At Quilt Expressions, we sell 5″ strips of minky.  I happened to have one at home, along with a left over strip of Cat in the Hat fabric.  Cut (5) 5″ squares from the minky and (5) 5″ squares from the fabric.  Place wrong sides together and sew 1/2″ seam around three sides.  Pour 1/4 cup of pinto beans in the open side, carefully sew the remaining side closed.

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With pinking shears, trim all four sides 1/4,” leaving a 1/4″ beyond the seams.  Finished!

Find a fun tin or pail to give the bean bags in, along with some game ideas.  An on-line search will give you lots of ideas.


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