Tuesday, April 2, 2013

My quilt for Baby Girl






I'm not sure how it started, maybe on one of my many trips to the Quilt Store to plan and pick up fabric for the two lovely quilts that Nana is making for Baby Girl, I decided it was important that I make a quilt for her too. She needed to have a quilt from her Mama and I needed to make this for her no matter how imperfect and beginner my attempt would end up. With the help of several (overdue) library books and many emails and phone conversations with my Mom, I am very proud to have finished my first quilt. I imagine cuddling with my little love in this blanket and hope it's one that she will love.




I decided not to over think the quilting and simply bought a lot of fabric that I loved. I knew the colors would all work well together because I chose my favorite colors. I have a serious obsession with all things striped and polka dotted so there are quite a few of these patterns as well. The fabrics make me happy and I love the variety.

Thanks to a wonderful gift from my Mom of a cutting board and rotary cutter, the cutting of the squares was super easy! It took much longer to decide on the size, but I eventually decided I wanted the final squares to be 3" so I cut my fabric squares to 3 1/2" to account for the seam allowances.


I then spent one evening crawling on the floor laying out squares. A fairly hilarious thing considering the size of my belly. I also spent a great deal of time shooing away the cat who was every curious about why fabric was on the floor and continually had to investigate. 


Once the squares were laid out I spent only a little bit of time arranging them differently. I pretty much just laid them out randomly and as long as the same fabric wasn't close or too much of one color/pattern was too close, I didn't overthink it too much. I wanted it to look random and unplanned.






Then I got to work pinning and sewing the squares together. I thought it would take a lot longer but once I got going I couldn't stop and the rows came together really quickly. My first couple of rows didn't quite match up as well as I would have liked since I was just getting the feel for what a 1/4" seam allowance should be. As I got more practice and more sewing I found myself getting much more consistent. I had a couple mistakes with sewing things backwards (that's why I have a seam ripper!) but overall I found that if I took my time and thought things through before I started sewing (sometimes hard for me) and that I maintained consistency throughout, I didn't have many problems.




I am incredibly pleased with how well the top came together. My seams aren't perfect but I wasn't trying for perfection and I just love the way it looks. The fabrics are bright and happy and I love the squares. I knew I wanted this to be a soft and cuddly baby blanket so I chose to use quilt batting and the very soft minky dot fabric for the quilt backing.

Again I spent an evening crawling on the living room floor pinning the quilting layers together. I was careful to get everything smoothed out and probably pinned way more than necessary.


I decided to quilt the top with straight lines about 1/4" out from the square seams. This was easy and I didn't have to worry about practicing advandaced quilting techniques, I just sewed lines. The quilt got pretty bulking with the addition of the batting and minky fabric so it got a little tedious to do the quilting but I loved seeing the progress and it didn't take nearly as long as I imagined it would.





I was incredibly pleased with the results of the quilting. I feared that somehow this step would ruin all the work I had done to sew the squares together but it definitely completely the quilt. I used white thread so it shows up only subtly on the back and front. There are plenty of areas where the squares don't line up and thus my lines are a bit wonky, but I'd like to think you only notice that if you look hard enough :) The quilt is soft and cozy and obviously already loved by certain family members!







The final step was the binding. I was excited but had the least experience with this step. Basically, I knew nothing about what to do. With the help of some library books and mostly from my Mom, with one especially helpful Facetime session, I attempted my first quilt binding. It was actually alot easier than I anticipated and I really enjoyed this step. I machine sewed the binding on the top and hand sewed it to the back.

I am incredibly proud of my quilt and cannot wait to snuggle a sweet babe in it. As a final finishing touch I added a little "Love Mama" to the bottom corner. I knew I wanted to sign the quilt but this one was meant for Baby from Mama so I decided to add a little hand embroidered love note.








41 comments:

  1. I can't believe I just read an entire blog post on quilting.
    Very nice job Heather, I'm sure baby girl will love it.

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  2. I LOVE LOVE LOVE it!!! I love it all! The stripes...the dots...the chevron...and most of all the <3 Mama :)

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  3. That is gorgeous! So lovely! And an adorable jelly cat bunny too! Those particular stuffed animals are very well loved at our house! Congratulations, I'm so proud of you!

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  4. Wow, that's beautiful!!! Nice job! She will love it forever!

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  5. The "love mama" part put a knot in my throat, so much love put into this quilt for your baby girl! Good job Heather, it's super sweet!

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  6. Can you make me a quilt, too??? Amazing and beautiful job, Heather! The sweet baby girl will love it for years to come.

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  7. So very cute! I love simple patchwork. The colors you picked are perfect and you did an awesome job making it!

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  8. Beautiful quilt - and I love the shot with the cat!

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  9. How many yards of each fabric did you get?

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  10. I also would love to know how much of each fabric did you get?! This is GORGEOUS! So inspiring!

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  11. Found this on Pinterest. Love this quilt!! Love the patterns & the tiny squares :)

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  12. Love this quilt! Inspired me to make one for my little one on the way :)

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  13. So beautiful for your sweet baby girl! Love the kitty cat too!

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  14. I LOVE this!! Would you share how much of each fabric you bought? I always struggle with that part.

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  15. This is fantastic! I have yet to finish a quilt (I've only ever sewn squares together), and with my first baby due in February this is the quilt I want to make! ♡♡

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  16. LOVE!! I'm going to try! Thanks for the inspiration...

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  17. Ahhh, I love this!! I have a baby girl coming in two months and I would love to make this for her. Can you tell me what the final size of your quilt was? Just trying to figure out how much fabric to buy. Love your taste and style, and your precious signature!!

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  18. oh, that 'love mama' tag...so sweet!

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  19. Love the quilt but get the hairy cat off it.

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  20. Think I have said this before, love the quilt, just beautiful but how can you let the dang cat get one it and spread all the nasty cat hair on a beautiful quilt. Hope the person who receives the quilt is not allergic to cats.

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  21. I'm in love! This is gorgeous! I want to make one for my baby girl! How many fabric choices did you use? How many yards of each fabric did you get? And how large was the overall quilt? I can't wait to start mine. :)

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  22. This gives me hope - is the first quilt I've found that is not perfect but looks amazing anyway. I'm attempting to make my first baby quilt (for my new niece/nephew) and it's scary! I also would like to know how many colours you used - this is the first one I've seen that uses more than a few colours and still looks cohesive and not overcrowded. Impressed! :)

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  23. WOW... what a great quilt. The fact that you let your kitty on it tells me how loving you are and you are going to make a GREAT Mama !!

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  24. Great first quilt which is likely well loved two years later. Perfection is overrated. This quilt was made to be used and loved, not kept as a heirloom.

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  25. Quilt is lovely, and Karen is obviously not a cat person, or understands how they 'help' with every project.

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  26. Love the quilt and label! Congratulations on your first quilt and Baby Girl!

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  27. So pretty! I very much admire the way the squares are so lined up. I have a terrible time keeping the squares lined up. Love the colors, the patterns. Just a very nice job! Thank you for sharing.

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  28. I love this quilt. You did a great job and I applaud your courage and guts to take on the project!!!

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  29. Very beautiful! How much of each fabric did you buy/use?

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  30. So pretty, trying to learn tips for my first quilt, hope it comes out half as cute.

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    1. I used 6 different fabrics for the squares and used less than a quarter of a yard. 1/2 yard batting and 1/2 yard of back fabric. 1/4 yrd for binding fabric.

      Hope this helps :)

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  31. Thank you for this toutorial!! I just finished mine, wish I could upload a picture.

    My finished quilt is 42"x30".

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  32. I have been quilting for over 20 years and your quilt is so refreshing it reminds me why I took to p & q in the first place. I love the way you aren't inhibited by (your, not mine) perceived imperfections and just enjoyed the whole process. I'm sure your little one has had many snuggles with both the quilt and the cat. Well done!

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  33. I'm going to try to do the same concept on a quilt with my daughter's baby clothes:) Shes almost 3 and I asked around and people want a ridiculous amount of money to make one. So, I've always wanted to sew and for my birthday my family got me a sewing machine! I hope mine comes our as beautiful as yours. I will tell you, having a girl was the best gift I ever received (for me at least), shes my best friend and the love of my life.

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  34. Your quilt is perfect! I really want to try to make a quilt. My mother is an accomplished seamstress and my sister recently made 3 rag quilts in a week. I have been frozen by choosing the fabrics. I was afraid they wouldn't work together. I was waiting to find a coordinating line that I loved but now I'm going to just buy colors and patterns that I love and go for it. Thanks for the inspiration!!

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  35. I was looking for a quilt pattern for our parent bedroom. I am going to use your 'easy peasy, lets not worry about it' idea. Thank you for sharing! I think our girls are about the same age? Mine is from July 2013. Right now I am sewing an Elsa/Frozen quilt for her new bed. Have a nice Sunday :-)
    Greetings Floor from Holland

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  36. I love everything about this project.

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