Friday, March 2, 2012

Only the World's Cutest Nephew Could Get Me to Make Another Quilt...

Well, posting around here has been a little slow, but that's not to say I haven't been busy! There is a backlog of recipes (partly handicapped by the inexplicable loss of my camera), but, first we'll get things back up and running with a little craftiness. So, since I lasted talked to you all, I have become a new Auntie (to the cutest snuggliest little nephew in the world). See?

So, I decided that this alone could get me to revisit my previous foray into quilting. Now, I still have my baby quilt and to this day use sometimes it as a couch blanket, so, without going into details about how ancient that means it is, lets just say it is very durable.

I decided for the new blanket, I'd stick with the very simple quilt tying approach. Now, at the time I started, we didn't know if this was going to be a niece or a nephew (forcing me to refer to him as my niecephew for months on end). So, I picked this super cute pink and blue retro looking animal print fabric, with some light green seersucker for the back and (since he came a little early I so knew what kind of baby he was before the blanket was finished) a blue satin blanket binding.

Basically, this was about a hundred times easier than blanket #1. I got crib sized quilt batting, which is usually 45x60, then washed the other fabrics on hot because they were so different they were sure to shrink at different rates. Then, I carefully, and very smoothly laid out the layers- seersucker, then batting, then flannel- getting it totally flat was definitely the hardest part. Then I measured, and cut, making a (mostly) rectangular 'quilt sandwich'.

Then, you have to put the yarn through. On my original blanket, the little ties were 5 inches apart, and alternated being on the front and on the back. Given the monumental durability of that system, I decided to stick with it. For this, you'll need a lot of yarn, and I don't see a way around wasting a lot, unfortunately. Go along the quilt and lightly mark in chalk or pencil a series of lines 5 inches apart. You'll need to make a mark every 10 inches, and make sure the marks are offset so that on each line, the mark you make is between two marks on the line above it (it makes more sense in the picture below). Then you take a pretty fat needle, thread a really really long strand of yarn, doubled over, and go along just making one stitch at each mark.

Then, flip it over, and do the same thing, except this time make the stitches along the same line, just in the empty areas (so that you have a grid, but on each side the stitches are in alternating locations). Then, you just snip the yarn and tie a square knot.

Then, it's time to bind it up!

Now, this part was hard, but not as hard as I'd feared. Get some perfectly matching thread, first of all, because the thread doesn't get folded under- you see it all. Now, some genius at the blanket binding company made this stuff so that one side of it is sliiiiiggghhhtly wider than the other. You want the slightly longer side on the underneath- basically, it's there because you can't see that side, and it gives you a little leeway when stitching it all together without accidentally driving the machine off the binding (which may or may not have happened anyways, but that wasn't their fault). The hardest part was the mitered corners. There are lots of people on the internet with video tutorials, which helped immensely. Now, I'm not going to lie, I was kind of freaking out about the corners- my mantra became "I do not love my blanket because it's perfect. I do not love my blanket because it's perfect..." But, after a few doings and undoings, and a LOT of pins, I finally got it! (although I think that kind of mantra is still important to keep in mind for this kind of thing.)

And.. that's it! Now the blanket is ready for some serious tummy time (photo cropped for privacy reasons,  but that's his Dad! and, I'm not going to post baby face pictures either, so you'll never get to verify his cutest-nephew status, but trust me, it's true. can't you just tell?)

I had extra flannel and not a lot of plans for it, so I bought a really little baby pillow and made a simple envelope case to cover it. Of course, the baby is too little to have a pillow right now, but I figure eventually he can use the pillow and blankie in the car, or for naps at other people's houses and things. Plus, it makes a cute little duo! 


Mary said...

What a treasure. I'm sure his mother was pleased. I am new to your blog, so I spent some time browsing through your earlier posts. I'm so glad I did that.I really like the food and recipes you share with your readers and I'll definitely be back. I hope you have a great day. Blessings...Mary

Rocio said...

This is beautiful! I can only imagine the hard work (and love) that went into the quilt. One day I will need to have a personal quilting session!

Rebeccas DIY said...

This was so cute, and the kransekake looks great. I bet it was delicious :)


Related Posts with Thumbnails