Thursday, August 19, 2010

Baby Quilt Part I

As promised, here is the first installment on the baby quilt I'm making for the much anticipated Martin Baby #2. As you can probably tell from the colours we've been told that the baby is going to be a girl, so I hope they're right! 

This is the top all pieced together and I'm really pleased with the result. I wanted to go for fresh, clean colours that weren't too baby-ish, and in terms of design the main principle was that it had to be simple since I'd never patchworked before, and not too contrived looking either. I got the design idea from etsy where there are literally hundreds of quilts for sale, and I just made it to fit the dimensions I wanted. Each of the large squares is 5 inches x 5 inches and the small yellow squares are 1 inch x 1 inch. The border is 4.5 inches wide I think. Anyway, all up the quilt is about 1m x 1.5m, so it'll be plenty big enough for a cot, and will still look good on a single bed.

I realised that cutting accurately was the key, so after watching several videos on You Tube on how to patchwork I went out and bought myself a patchwork ruler. What a brilliant invention! Bascially it's just a clear ruler with lots of different markings on it (I went for an imperial rather than metric one), but it allows you to cut lovely straight, square or angled lines. I already had the pizza-type cutter and the cutting board so I was all set then. Apart from the fabrics ...

I had the loveliest time going through my stash and picking out all those favourite fabrics that I've been collecting but waiting to use on that special project, and then I visited just about every patchwork shop in Christchurch looking for the right fabrics to coordinate with them. What fun! I was very restrained, but still managed to end up with lots of left-overs. I think this new baby will be wearing dresses that coordinate with her quilt for years until I've managed to use them all up! Anyway, for the backing fabric I decided on a Heather Bailey fabric called Church Flowers. The colours are beautiful and work perfectly with the top, plus because it's not plain hopefully it will mean any little imperfections when I come to the quilting will be hidden. For the binding I've decided on a stripe, also by Heather Bailey called Slim Dandy. Both fabrics are from her Nicey Jane collection.

I had thought all my decisions about this quilt were made, but that was until I went shopping for the inner. Who knew there were so many different options?! ... polyester (not recommended for babies under 12 months), cotton, cotton/bamboo, wool, the list goes on. I ended up going for cotton, simply because it's machine washable and I'm all for that! I'm going to use 2 layers though as I want a bit of weight in the quilt and since the batting it so wide I don't have to buy extra to allow for this. Now I just need to pin it all together (using the rather expensive but apparently invaluable quilters safety pins), quilt it, and sew on the binding. Time to do some more how-to videos watching on You Tube. Until next time ... 

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