My First Baby Quilt

I recently finished my first baby quilt using the instructions from this post on The Polka Dot Chair for inspiration.

baby-quilt-8 It was a lot of fun to make, especially since it came together so quickly. I got this one done in five days, which is a vast improvement over the time it took me to complete my first quilt: two years. Granted, this one is a lot smaller and has a simpler design, but I think it helps too that I’m getting more familiar with the process.

baby-quilt-2 The hardest part was the actual quilting, that is, making the pattern on the top. My first quilt was hand-tied, so this technique was entirely new to me. I started by drawing the designs with a bar of soap, something that grandma taught me. That’s when I learned how much Toby likes soap. One morning I came in the craft room and found he had the entire bar in his mouth.

baby-quilt-1 He also seems to like quilts because whenever I had it spread out on the floor he chose to lie on top of it. That may not seem like a big deal, but this is the dog who loves the tile in our house and avoids any sort of cushion, pillow, carpet or blanket because it makes him too hot. It’s like he was saying, “Mom, I’m a baby and you haven’t made me a blanket.” Or maybe he just liked the smell of soap all over it.

baby-quilt-5 When I first started sewing the pattern, I was very concerned about each leaf-like design being perfect and exact, but I loosened up as I went along and that made it more fun. After all, I told myself, no two leaves are alike in nature, so they don’t have to be on my quilt top either. In the end, the overall effect was very nice, and you can only tell there are nuances in the leaves if you’re looking at it closely.

baby-quilt-3 For the back I chose this sweet elephant, turtle and bird print – a cotton flannel sort of thing I picked up from Jo-Ann Fabric. It was nice and soft – perfect for a baby blanket.

baby-quilt-9 The last challenge was the binding. The technique I used on my other quilt was binding it so that the fabric I used on the back came around to the front. That meant I only had to sew it on one side and could use the machine. With this quilt, however, I wanted to try making the binding in a completely different fabric. To do this, I relied on The Ultimate Quilt Binding Tutorial from the Missouri Quilt Co. I can’t say enough about how easy it was to follow — easy enough that I’m already looking forward to making my next quilt.

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