I saw a picture…

Some of my favorite projects begin with seeing a photo of someone else’s project. This one didn’t turn out exactly like the original, but I love it just the same.

First, the complication. We are moving again, and I already packed up my patterns, foolishly thinking I wouldn’t need them. There is a baby shower coming up and I wanted to sew a gift, so I turned to the internet for inspiration. I found a photo of a baby drooling bib that looks like flower petals and calyces (the green parts that protect the bud before opening).

I eyeballed it from the photo, drew the pattern pieces, and started digging for fabric. I counted 4 large petals and 8 calyces, so I cut twice as many pieces of fabric for each, sewed them together right sides together, leaving the top portion open, and turned and pressed the pieces.

I found some bias tape in the dark green. Although it’s very wide, it would work. I would have preferred half the size. I opened the tape and laid the pieces inside, layering how it pleased me. I pinned it all and topstitched. I found I missed some places in the back, so I topstitched again. I’ll never admit that the original plan wasn’t double-topstitching!

If you have made your own version of something you’ve seen in a picture, I’d love it if you share it with me.

Flower bib

Flower bib

DSCN0173

Simple potholders or hotpads

I belong to a quilting group on Facebook and this project for pot holders was posted. Here is my own photo tutorial on the simple potholders.

DSCN0050

template for batting

template for batting

Using dish covers, I traced circles on the cotton batting. I made both sizes, blue and orange. ;) You can use cotton batting or batting that is made specifically for potholders.

DSCN0039

Widows and orphans and crazy patch

These are some of the potholders I whipped up quickly.

 

DSCN0040

scrap pile

I gathered my materials – scraps from other projects and box of bias tape bindings. I plan to use up much of what you see.

DSCN0041

On to the tutorial. To start, I placed a leftover block on the cotton batting. I did not use a separate foundation (muslin); I simply sewed right onto the batting.DSCN0042

I topstitched the seam lines, because I like the quilted look.DSCN0043

I placed coordinating fabric along the edges so that fabric covers the batting completely.DSCN0044

DSCN0045 DSCN0046

Trim around the batting.

Then I found another green print and cut 3 circles. Place one circle on the back of the batting with the right side up. The other two circles should be folded in half with right sides facing. Place them on the back of the potholder so the fold lines are together.DSCN0047 DSCN0048

I sewed a narrow zigzag all around the edge to keep the layers together.DSCN0049

Add a binding and you are done. If you are making a circle, you must use bias binding. DSCN0050

The folded circles added to the back allow you to use the potholder as a pan or lid grabber.DSCN0051

 

More Quick and Simple Quilts

I have decided, since two of our grandchildren are a bit older, that they will receive the drag-around, kid-friendly quick quilts that I made a few years ago for the oldest ones.  I showed the quilts and the steps here  when I made the frog and the monkey quilts, and here when I made the pink and rainbows quilt. Time to brush up on my fleece quilting, and I have to admit that I referred back to my original postings to see details of what I did.

topstitching

topstitching

Hearts for Lilly

Hearts for Lilly

Monsters for Aidan

Monsters for Aidan

I didn’t get a photo, but with some of the leftover fabrics I made a doll quilt for Lilly’s doll that matches her quilt.

For Lea

Our 7th grandchild was born early, and I was caught unprepared. I finally have the quilt done for baby Lea. I started it soon after I finished Callan’s in June, and I even had a shortcut. I already had a lot of small patches cut, and several were joined in various formations that I could use in this one. I had found a photo on the internet, which is how many of my ideas happen, and knew I wanted to try my own version of it. It didn’t matter what sizes the original poster had made hers, I was using what I already had. I can’t find the person’s blog where I found the design, so I can’t give credit. If you recognize this, please comment and let me refer to your post.

A couple of things slowed me down – I have arthritis in my hands and it is getting worse. The patchwork didn’t bother me, but even machine quilting isn’t comfortable for very long. I even gave up finishing the binding by hand, using the machine only. I also fell and sprained a wrist and the opposite hand’s thumb, so it really hurt to quilt by machine!

So, enjoy the photos, and the baby will soon be enjoying the quilt.
lea quilt1

lea quilt2

lea quilt3

Quilt finished in time

I love it when I can deliver a baby quilt before the baby is delivered. Grandson Callan is still expected, as I write this, and the quilt is in the hands of the parents, completed a couple of weeks ago.

Image

Image

I did the binding differently this time. I machine-stitched it to the front and folded it to the back, but what is different is that I machine-stitched it to the back as well. I made sure the stitches would catch the binding, and used a blind hem stitch (3 straight stitches then a zig zag). The arthritis in my hands just won’t allow the tug of hand-stitching binding any more. I did hand-stitch the label into place, which I created on my 12-year-old Brother embroidery machine.

I have already begun the quilt for the September grandbaby.

 

Change of plans

Once before, I made a baby quilt and it was sized more for a twin bed (almost) than a baby. That was the fireworks quilt from 2011, posted here. I almost made that error again. Somehow, when I added the sizes of the blocks and the sashing, it didn’t seem as large as when I started sewing it all together.

When I had several rows sewn together, still 6 blocks wide, I realized it was far too big. I laid it on the floor and reimagined how it should look. I decided it was one block wider than it should be, and I would only sew rows 3-8 together. That meant some stitch ripping, which is not unusual for me in any project. It made for a much friendlier, crib-sized quilt.

Image

Examples of twins:

ImageImage

ImageImage

The floral fabric above and to the right is leftover from sewing the baby’s aunt an Easter dress when she was about 7 years old.

Image

The baby’s father requested the Hershey print fabric for a wall hanging project when he was a teenager.

Image

Sadly, the block from this fabric didn’t make it into the quilt (poor planning on my part) but I’m glad there are two cornerstones with the bowling pin fabric. I spent a lot of time with the baby’s father and the rest of our family in a bowling alley while he was a young teenager (and a very good bowler, I must add).

 

Blocks into rows

The next step is to add sashing and cornerstones. The pattern of the blocks and the colors make it far too busy to simply sew them together. I added white sashing and cornerstones of the printed fabrics. I laid out the blocks and chose the cornerstones so that they would not obviously match the block before or after in that row. I did not go so far as to make sure rows above and below were the same way, so there could be some adjacent matching that way. There is only so much OCD I can stand in myself!

Image

I started with the first row and made the sashing to the left and top of the block. The final block on the right side of the row would need an extra sashing and cornerstone on the right side, and the final row would need an extra sashing and cornerstone on the bottom of the block.

Image

I always mark my rows with a piece of paper, or I’d never keep it all straight.

After sewing blocks into rows, I had this:

Image

My plan was to have 8 rows with 6 blocks in each row. More about that in the next post. “The best laid plans of mice and men…”