Recently, after much coveting of other people’s gorgeous quilts on Pinterest, Sherry from Young House Love’s story of taking on her first quilt, and discovering the world’s coolest sewing circle, The Modern Quilt Guild, I decided to jump into quilting with both feet! Luckily, I had a brand new nephew who could be my quilting guinea pig… Something he did happily, as you can see from the photos.
I began by planning my quilt’s design. I had seen this one and thought I could use it as a general basis for my own unique quilt. Next, I hit the fabric store during one of their quilting material sales and picked up a package of Warm & Natural organic cotton baby quilt batting, along with the polka dot fabrics that ultimately became Elliott’s quilt.
Along with the patterned fabric and batting, I also grabbed a yard of Kona cotton in Snow for the front, some Heat ‘N Bond for the monogram and name, and some grey extra wide double-fold bias tape for the binding.
I printed the letters comprising Elliot’s name (plus the E for the large initial) on regular paper. I then traced them onto the fabric, which I had already prepared with the Heat ‘N Bond. I’ve since found out that a Cricut cutter will cut through fabric which would be a much faster and more precise way of accomplishing this look.
Using this tutorial, I created the mitred border and joined that to the white main fabric. I appliqued the letters onto the white main fabric and then sandwiched the whole thing with the batting in between. I elected to baste the sandwich with sewn basting stitches which I did in bright pink and later removed. You can use a basting spray or safety pins if you like.
The quilting is done to mimic a wood grain — I found this idea on Leah Day’s absolutely awesome website. I did not, however, use free motion quilting to accomplish this. I used my regular sewing machine with its feed dogs in place. I simply got really creative with my “reverse” button on my machine. It took a lot of hours to quilt, but in the end, I love the way it turned out! Once I’d completely finished the quilting, I did the binding using this great tutorial. One day I’ll be adventurous enough to make my own fabric binding!
The finished quilt measures about 42 inches square and has a thick, firm texture. Probably not ideal for using as a blanket, but more for when Elliott enjoys tummy time on the floor or for in his stroller. I can’t wait to start my next quilt — I’ve got all my fabric piled up, ready to go, on my sewing table. Just have to find the time!