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2x the Baby Quilts - Baby Blocks Quilt

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This year a number of women that I know decided it would be a good idea to get pregnant with boys. Myself included there are 5 little boys brewing that I’m making a quilt for. In general, I find it more difficult to quilt for boys. The majority of the fabrics I find myself drawn to are very feminine. But in the depths of my quilting closet I found a jelly roll of batik fabrics that ranged from pearly white to black and every shade of blue in between. Perfect.

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I separated out individual strips from the jelly roll according to pattern and color and made as many of the 6.5” blocks as I could, resulting in 75 blocks. Typically when I quilt, I don’t actually follow a pattern. I just kinda wing it and hope everything looks good when I’m done. I knew that I wanted to make at least two quilts, and kill two birds with one stone.

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Each quilt got 36 blocks, making the quilt tops 6 x 6 block grids. The few extra blocks I had made their way to my scrap pile. The kids all had fun helping me play around with the layouts of the blocks, since my quilting took over the dining room. Each of the quilts, when finished measure about 36 x 36”.

For the sashing, borders and backing on one of the quilts, I used a flat sheet from from a sheet set I found on clearance at Target a while ago. I actually really like to use sheets for backing because they’re so soft and I always end up with snugly, pliable quilts rather than a rigid quilt that feels over stitched. The other quilt got a vintage type airplane print broadcloth, and I actually had to piece the backing with a few inches of the same navy fabric I used for the binding. Like I said, I wing it when I quilt! The airplane print was a misprint, and throughout the fabric you can see where the fabric was folded over during printing, but I like that it’s imperfect, it adds to the old feel of the fabric.

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With these quilts I also decided to start expanding my skills and hand embroider the quilt tags. Oh man, I’m awful at embroidery, but I decided to keep the labels I made because they have a homemade feel to them. And an infant won’t notice if my lettering isn’t a consistent size. On one of the quilts I used an extra block as the label.

The quilt with the airplane backing was machine quilted with a grid pattern. I top stitched through the sashing and the centers of the blocks. The quilt with the white backing was hand quilted with big fat stitches through the center 2 rows, and the rest of the blocks were tied in the of the blocks.

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I’m quite pleased with how these two quilts turned out, and I can’t wait to give them away. The quilt with the white backing is for one of Handsomepant’s coworkers so he’s going to gift the quilt at an office party later this month. The quilt with the airplane backing is for a girlfriend from church and I am so looking forward to her baby shower in just a few weeks. Giving quilts is one of my greatest pleasures in life.

Happy Quilting!

  • Rita

Ginger’s Quilts: Wince’s Baby Quilt

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Grandma Ginger has been busy making baby quilts for a while. Over the last seven years she’s been blessed with nine grand children, and she’s never missed a baby quilt for any of them. A few weeks ago this arrived in the mail and it’s been put through the ringer already! Between baby “fluids”, sticky toddlers, and dropped snacks this quilt has been washed a number of times in the few weeks we’ve had it.

Wince recently discovered his toes.

Wince recently discovered his toes.

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I tried to get a good shot of it and failed, Ginger used a feathered design for the quilting. It’s quite cute and adds to a well-used look on the quilt. This quilt is so soft and pliable, I wish my quilts were like hers. Maybe I need to wash them a few time once finished.

The little duckies where then all appliqued on top of the quilting. I love that they have wheels instead of feet. They remind me of an old fashioned pull toy.

Wince sure is pleased with his new quilt!

Wince sure is pleased with his new quilt!

The blues came from Ginger’s stash. The woman practically has a store in her house! The backing is a chevron printed fabric with ombre blues that match the pinwheels on the quilt top. The binding is a matching batik, and of course Ginger hand sewed the binding. I know there’s contention between hand sewn and machine sew binding, but it’s something she likes to do in the evening when sitting in the living room with my father-in-law before bed.

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Happy Quilting!

  • Rita

Independence Day Quilt Pattern

At the beginning of the year, I had made a series of New Year's resolutions that were selected in order to increase my skills in quilting.  All of my life I had been mediocre at everything I tried, a jack of all trades, master of none.  But quilting has been the only hobby I actually stuck to longer than a year, and it's something I plan to master.  One of the ways in which I wanted to stretch my abilities was to write my own quilt pattern.  This would challenge my creativity, help me master the art of quilty math, and would be a pretty legit thing to have on my "resume".  So without further ado, here's "Independence Day."

I've always really admired flag quilts.  The variety and colors are beautiful, and the scrappy fabrics and long tradition of flag quilts gives you a feeling of historical continuity.  Looking at those quilts gives me a sense of national pride and connection that all of their creators must share.  Binge watching Netflix documentaries on the Civil War and the World Wars helps too.  

I wanted something quick and easy, so "Independence Day" is an over sized, modern take on the American flag.  The lines of top stitching are 3" apart.  I didn't want the quilting to distract from the pattern, and sometimes I find that are quilted with a tight pattern are stiff and not as comfy-snuggly as I like a quilt to be.  I thought a snuggly patriotic quilt was appropriate, it should feel like a hug from friends, family, summer nights, bare feet, fireflies, and clean sheets.  It should feel like home.

I think this beauty will make a nice addition to our fireworks viewing this year too!

I will say that I have a new found appreciation for pattern writing.  In the future I'll plan better instead of just diving right in with piecing and making it up as I go.  That's how I usually quilt, but I learned a lot about the importance of organization.  Thank you Robert Kaufman Fabrics for your Quilter's Friend QuiltCalc, you saved me from several headaches!

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I also have a new found respect for those bloggers who regularly create pdf downloads, they are way more involved in creating them than I had anticipated.  I'm sorry to all of those blogger's whose downloads I abused and underappreciated in the past.  

You can download the pattern HERE

M helped me take pictures and decided she was tired after about 3 pictures.  I had to take the rest while she took a nap that afternoon!

M helped me take pictures and decided she was tired after about 3 pictures.  I had to take the rest while she took a nap that afternoon!

Do you like what you see? Let me know in the comments bellow!

Happy Quilting!

- Rita

A New Baby, Another Quilt!

It's official, Handsomepants and I are now outnumbered! Our little boy was born in October after a very exciting weekend spent in the emergency room. (Everything was fine, it turned out to be much ado about nothing too serious.) We kept Tiny's gender a surprise but we were still anticipating a girl, given our track record of producing girls and at one point I thought the doctor slipped up. Needless to say Handsomepants was literally speechless when Tiny popped out.

Hello Tiny! (Obligatory proud mom pic)

Hello Tiny! (Obligatory proud mom pic)

Every kiddo has gotten thier own quilt (although i still have to finish Gooses' quilt, it will make a nice 5 year birthday present right?) Tiny's was a quick tummy-time sized quilt. Full disclosure here, I cheated and already had the quilt made! Last year I had made the quilt for a cousin thinking she was having a boy, but I was wrong and had to quickly make aomething a little more pink! So I've had the quilt packed away for a little while.

The pattern is super simple, it's a checker board of single square and 4-square blocks.

The pattern is super simple, it's a checker board of single square and 4-square blocks.

I used a charmpack of Nocturnal by Janet Clare for Moda as well as a yard of the collections navy moon fabrich for the backing.  I tried some new techniques for me. I made the quilt self-binding, something I think I'll do more regularly. I also tied the quilt, which turned out to be pretty adorable.

I love the fabric. The charm pack was something I had in my stash for a while. It was an impulse buy, and I'm so glad I had it. Not only is navy one of my favorite colors, I have a hard time finding fabric for boys. I'm not into the cutesy fabric, I preference more mature patterns and because of this I find boys more difficult to quilt for. 

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I think I'll have to improve my quilting taste for little boys because I'm kind of in love!

 

Happy quilting! 

- Rita