Alderaanian Royal Training Service Project: Making fleece blankets for refugees by Rosie & PandaCat

As part of her training and upbringing in the Royal House of Alderaan, Princess Leia and her childhood companion, Winter, were expected to begin their service while still quite young. Alderaan was always recognized as a haven for refugees whether from natural disasters or political upheaval, especially since they embraced a political philosophy of pacifism. This tradition offered food and shelter to the unfortunate refugees until they could get their lives back in order.

One of the greatest comforts the refugees desired was warmth. Transport ships were often cold and damp and the refugees almost always arrived with nothing but the clothes on their backs. When they arrived at the shelters, they were given warm fleece blankets, which were theirs to keep.

Alderaanian Royal Training Service Project:  Making fleece blankets for refugees

Leia and Winter were taught to make these simple but warm blankets by Leia's maiden aunts when they were very young. By the time they were 10 years old, they could turn out two blankets each in an afternoon. And once a month, the Organa aunts would take the girls to the shelters to distribute the blankets to the refugees. The girls learned to talk gently with the refugees as they proudly offereed them the product of their handiwork, especially with the children. They learned that how words were spoken could mean the difference between comfort and gratitude, versus resentment and hostility. It was a very important part of Leia's education and she used it in her own work with the Senate and later with the Rebellion and the New Republic.

Here's how the two young girls made these simple blankets that meant so much to their recipients:

Supplies:

(1) 2 yards each of contrasting or complementary colored polar fleece
(2) 1 pair of sharp fabric scissors
(3) A large, clean, flat surface to lay the project out, and to move around


How to do it:
Step 1:
Square off the ends of the fabric so that each corner is a 90 degree angle.

Step 2:
Trim the selvage edges of the fabric.
Step 3:
Lay one of the fabrics right side down out in a large enough area to be able to move around all four sides. Lay the second fabric out on top of it and smooth out all of the wrinkles.


Step 4:
Trim both pieces of fabric to the exact same size, being sure to keep the right angle corners.


Step 5:
Using a 5 to 5 inch square cardboard template, cut squares out of each corner of the fabric through both layers.



Step 6:
Cut 1-inch wide strips through both layers of fabric to match the length of the corner notches all the way around the perimeter of the blanket.


Step 7:
Tie the top to the bottom layer of fabric by taking the top and bottom layer of each strip and tying a square knot. Do this around the entire perimeter.


Step 8:
Voila! A lovely reversible no-sew blanket.







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