Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Getting Ready for Baby Boy: The Blanket

For each of my girls, I have made a quilt before she was born.  I guess it's part of my "nesting process" or whatever.  So, in my preparations for our sweet boy I, of course, had to make him a blanket.

I have to admit that I (even as I type) am a bit embarrassed to say that I bought this blanket as a pre-made kit.  I really (honestly) had a hard time buying some prefabricated pattern with all of the instructions included.  For one thing, I am really bad at following instructions.  For another, the kit advertised that it was "great for beginners."  However, in the long run, what does it really matter?  I mean...really?  It is not  that big a deal - right?  Besides, this kit had patterns and fabrics in the colors I wanted.  The bright orange minky (or "plush" as the kit labeled it) fabric is near impossible to find in stores around here so I would likely have to order online.

Which takes time and more money.

I have neither.

Kit it is!  So here's what I got:

See how nicely it's all packaged?  Saved me the time I would spend contemplating which prints would look best with which at the fabric store.  And trust me, that could take a LONG time.  Even for a baby blanket.

I even took out the directions and attempted to follow them.  See?

I mainly did follow the instructions, but I made a few adjustments because some things about the prefab kit were a bit odd.

Like this:

No, those fabrics aren't folded really close to each other.  They're fused together.  As in, it's really just one piece of fabric with 4 different prints on it.  Weird.

Also, look at the animal print.  The direction of the animals on the actual fabric doesn't match how they are shown in the final product.  The quilt "squares" are not actually square - they are 6 1/2" x 8".  The instructions say to cut each rectangle sideways - so the animals would not be up and down on the final quilt (like ALL the pictures show).  They would be sideways.

This really bugged me.  I mean, REALLY bugged me.

So, I cut the rectangles the "wrong" way so that the animals would end up the "right" way according to the directions.  Get it?

I ended up having to sew 2 remnant pieces together in order to make up the final animal-print rectangle.

This also bugs me.  But at least the animals are right-side up and not sideways.

Here's all the rectangles cut out.

Next came the minky or "plush" border.  The directions said to cut each strip 3 1/2" wide, but I thought that was a bit skimpy.  Plus, there was extra fabric for both the border and the backing.

So I added an inch to each of the border pieces and cut each 4 1/2" wide.

Then came all the sewing (it really was not that much).

Once it was all pieced together and properly pressed, it was time to add the backing.

Another thing that bothered me about this kit, was that it did not include (or call for) batting to be added in the center of the quilt.

It just seemed that the blanket would be a bit on the thin side without the batting.  Why call it a "snuggle blanket" if it's really thin and not that "snuggly"?

I dug through my stash (because I'm very impatient and wanted this done immediately) and pieced together some leftover batting that I had from the bedspread I had made for my bed and another quilt I had made recently for H's big girl bed.

I placed the front and back together just as the directions said (with right sides together) and then added a layer of batting.  I cut the batting to size and pinned it all together.

It looked like this:

And here's the other side (batting is now on the bottom):

I sewed around the whole thing, catching the batting in the seam, and left about a 6" opening in the bottom.

I then turned the quilt right-side out, pinned around the edges again, and sewed 1/4" in from the edge all the way around closing the opening in the process.  This gives the appearance of the quilt having a binding.

Lastly, I "stitched in the ditch" to quilt it and hold all that batting in place securely (because I KNOW this blanket is going to get lots of washes).

The final product?

Not bad for a 2 hour project.  And now baby boy has a blanket.  Don't you just love all the bright colors?

 And here is the back.  You can see all the quilting in this pic.

And one more close-up. :)

I feel much better now my little boy has a baby blanket.  And, really, using the kit was not such an awful experience after all. :)

No comments:

Post a Comment