Mar 03 2014
My college roommate is having her first baby (yay!) and was having a surprise shower this weekend. I would have loved to attend, but by the time I found out about it, my parents had been scheduled to visit me for many months so that was a no-go. However, I still wanted to give her something special, not just something off the registry so I decided to make her a baby quilt.
As it turns out, I had the perfect set of 8 Sommerville Spring fat quarters (which was good since I’m still on my “only use stuff in my stash” kick). Cute and perfect for a little kid. Although it’s a girl, this would work for a boy or a girl which I figured was good in case they were trying to avoid gender stereotypes or something like that (not that she’s really the kind to worry about that sort of thing). I cut each fat quarter into 3 5.5″ x 20″ strip. Then I sewed them together into one long massive strip using the same repeating order of strips, an order which nicely separated the very green strips by less green strips. Then I cut the super long strip into 11 42″ wide strips, varying the starting and ending panel sizes, maybe adding an extra piece here and there so it was more random and organic looking.
I stitched all the strips together and then sliced down the sides to make them nice and even. The resulting width was about 40″. I laid it on the batting (I used Warm & Natural batting in baby quilt size, also from my stash) and then laid that on the backing which I pieced together using two pieces. For the backing I used a bright pink tie dyed fuchsia snuggle flannel. It was super cozy and I hope the little lady likes it. I was pretty happy with how it brought out the bits of pink in the quilt.
For the actual quilting, I used large pins to pin the layers together, trying to keep the pins no more than 6″ apart. I stitched across, parallel to the strips, doing 1/4″ on either side of each seam and one down the center of each strip. I switched directions on each line of stitching to prevent the quilt from starting to drift in either direction.
For the binding I used the method from Made by Rae which just folds over the backing. I liked this because I would have made the binding the backing color anyways and it was super easy and clean looking! I was really happy with how it turned out and would definitely use this method again.
This is before i washed it. Before sending it off, I washed it because it had some stitch markings on it and also because I think quilts always look better after a washing. This is technically only the 3rd quilt I’ve ever finished (if you don’t count my tester long arm quilts — 5th in that case — but those are tiny) and I’m definitely inspired to do more since it was both satisfying and fun to make. The 2nd one was another baby quilt for our other college roommate when she had her first baby a couple years ago. Coincidentally that quilt was also a similar shade of green but my quilting skills have increased considerably since then.
For the actual packaging, I took the strips of backing fabric that I had cut off and made a long sash of it by folding it in half and then folding the raw edges in and stitching down the both sides. Then I used that as a ribbon to wrap up the quilt, put that in a bag with a card and mailed it off. Can’t wait to hear what she thinks of it!