Monday, June 3, 2013
Simple Baby Quilt Tutorial
Have I mentioned we’re expecting our third child?
Perhaps I’ve neglected to share that news.
Or maybe you noticed in my post about the pleated chevron bags last week…I am looking pregnant.
We’re very excited…right now I’m about 22 weeks into this pregnancy. Too early to nest, but I’ve been thinking about some things I’d like to make this baby.
We opted not to find out if we’re expecting a boy or a girl, the same as we’ve done with our two older boys. So anything I make has to be neutral enough for either gender. I do always guess ‘boy’, though, and so far I’ve been right! We’ll just have to wait until late September to find out….
I decided to try making a quilt. This is the first one I’ve ever made that’s a ‘real’ quilt, with binding at the edges. And let me tell you, it was easy! I can’t wait to make another (maybe just a blanket next time…) with the same technique.
I love the gray and yellow color combination. 'I’ve never gotten very into decorating either of my children’s rooms, but with this baby, I am planning a few projects to decorate the nursery. Wherever that is, we haven’t decided who will be rooming where.
To make this quilt (which measures 32" x 40"), I did 45 simple rectangles for the blocks. I cut each rectangle to 5” x 7.5".
I laid the blocks out so I could decide what order I wanted them in. I didn’t want any blocks of the same pattern next to each other. I drew a map of where each block was to go since I couldn’t finish the whole quilt at once.
Then I sewed them into rows (using 1/4” seam allowance). Then I sewed those strips into the offset pattern you see below (also using 1/4” seam allowance).
I pressed each of the seams open, as you can see below.
Next, I had to cut off every other block at the end of the row to make it even on each side.
Preparing the quilt for quilting is the next step. Keep in mind, I do not have a special machine, so I just did straight lines of stitching.
Lay the quilt out on the back fabric with wrong sides together. If you want to use batting, now is the time to add that. I skipped that step, mostly because I wasn’t sure I wanted the quilt to be too thick. I would recommend using batting and would use it if I could have a do-over!
Carefully smooth out both layers. Starting at the middle of the quilt, place safety pins (or straight pins, I ran out of safety pins) at the center of each block, securing the quilt top to the backing (through the batting, if necessary).
Continue until you’ve safety pinned all the blocks into place.
Now roll the quilt up to the middle to start quilting. I recommend using a thread color that matches the backing of the quilt. I used yellow and didn't really love the result against a navy backing.
I started at the edge and quilted across each row first. Then I rolled it the other way (from the sides) and quilted each column. I have double and even triple stitches in some locations because I didn’t want to stop and backstitch in the middle of a row or column, but I can’t really tell unless I look at the back.
Close-up of my stitching:
After the quilting is done, smooth out the quilt and cut the back fabric to 2” all around.
Fold down the edges 1/2”, press, and then over 1”. To do a meitered corner, I used this tutorial. I had to adjust the dimensions since my border is wider than the one in that tutorial, but it shows how to fold the corner into a triangle (1”) and that will start the next border side.
Pin everything into place and press again. Stitch the border.
After you stitch up the border, the quilt is finished. Give it one final press and then admire it.
Or let your sweet little “baby” (who is about to become your middle child) admire it and think it is his.
Making a quilt wasn’t quite as difficult as I had thought. I’ve made blankets before, but never quilted them and then done a binding. I wish I would’ve used some batting between the layers of this quilt.
So I guess I’ll have to make another one. Someday.
Places I have linked:
Or So She Says, Train to Crazy, Tater tots & Jello, Merry Messy Life, Sugar Bee Crafts, Reasons to Skip the Housework, The 36th Avenue, House of Hepworths, Someday Crafts, Southern Lovely, 504 Main,Serenity Now, Fingerprints on the Fridge, I heart NapTime, Classy Clutter, A Glimpse Inside, Somewhat Simple, Gingerly Made, Serenity Now, Today's Creative Blog, The Winthrop Chronicles, Home Stories A to Z, CraftyScrappyHappy