Friday, 7 October 2011

Quilts for my babies (Part 1)

While on holidays I thought I would take the opportunity to reflect on and share the quilts that I made for Blossom & Bean.. and because I have a tendancy to ramble I've split them into two separate posts so that you won't be here all night!

The first "real" quilt I ever made was for Bean. A girlfriend and I had decided to make a cot quilt for another friend's baby shower after finding one of those tear & share patterns at Spotlight. The whole thing was a bit of a debacle, partly because almost all of the measurements were wrong (for example, the typo that said we needed 85cm x 11cm of wadding instead of 85cm x 110cm.. and even the 85x110 was wrong, btw!) and partly because we were both inexperienced when it came to quilting.. infact my girlfriend was a complete sewing novice!

Anyway, we ended up with about 3 times too much fabric (instructions said 1/2 metre per fabric and we only needed 15cm max). After making the horrendous cot quilt (really, it was terribly embarrassing!) my girlfriend and I started attending my local quilting friendship group having decided to use the leftover fabric to make quilt tops for both out little boys (and yes, we had enough of the print fabric to do both quilt tops - which were also about 2-3 times the size of the original cot quilt design... and I still have a little bit of fabric left over!).

The girls at my local quilting group were lovely, so welcoming and willing to share their knowledge and expertise! They taught me so much about quilting -for example, how to chain piece, what binding was & how to make it etc. In virtually no time my quilt top was complete and I was experimenting with machine quilting. I stuck to the basics and went with diagonal lines, but I can't begin to tell you how proud I was when that quilt was finished!

My girlfriend never ended up completing her quilt. Infact it's still sitting in my craft cupboard. The problem with hers was that she wasn't quite as pedantic about accuracy when cutting & sewing as I was and as a result her rows ended up skewed. Very skewed. She gave up, and at the time I was too busy trying to work out what I was doing myself. She's pregnant with baby #2 now though and I've considered pulling the quilt top out and trying to work out if I can salvage it without having to pull the whole thing apart (because that would be WAY too much effort). I was thinking something along the lines of appliqueing some baby rattles/bears/sheep etc over the joins so that you don't notice as much. I haven't actually looked at it in quite some time.. but it's on my to do list!

Meanwhile, Bean still uses his quilt virtually every night. He's using it right now, as it happens! We take it on holidays, and it's always at the end of his bed incase he's too cold. But he's outgrowing it, and not just size-wise. Because it was leftover baby fabric is really is a *baby* quilt. One day he will wake up, look at his quilt, then tell me that he can't use it anymore because he is a big boy. And then I will be sad. So instead I decided that if I made him a new, bigger quilt that I could side-step the rejection heartbreak! And that is why I'm making the Harry Potter quilt.

But I'm still proud of my first "real" quilt.

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