My sister-in-law is pregnant with her first baby (so excited!), and she asked me to make the quilt for his bedroom. She decided on neutrals with pops of navy, and the inspiration room she found on Pinterest is loaded with cute accents like deer antlers (that will be my brother-in-law’s contribution), driftwood, etc. It’s going to be a really stylish room—kind of a nice deviation from cartoonish, bright kid colors.
Beth saw a quilt I had made with scraps from this quilt. It was all mishmashed together from scraps. I would sew random pieces together, cut it, and sew it up again. I threw in the navy just for fun. She really liked that design, so I chose a bunch of different neutral fabrics, including linen for some textural interest, and started piecing away. I was really happy with the top but had a really hard time deciding how to quilt it since it was so crazy on the top.
I googled a bit, finally coming down to either straight line quilting or organic line quilting. I don’t often do either—I’m much more of a free motion girl. I stumbled upon Crazy Mom Quilts’ post about her troubles with straight line quilting (can’t find it again to save my life) and decided I’d rather go the organic route. Armed with her advice from her mistakes, I thought I would have this baby finished in no time….um, NO. I ended up with a total mess, exactly like she did:
I saw the fabric getting wavy as I was going along, but like an idiot, I thought it would work itself out and come out fine after a wash, so I pressed on until I had the whole thing quilted. After I pulled it off the machine and really looked at it, I decided I just couldn’t live with it. Not only was it all puckery, but the quilting actually made the pieced front looked curved instead of squared. Admittedly, I’m a bit of a perfectionist. I’ve been getting better at letting go a bit, but this was beyond what I could overlook. It’s really hard to settle for mediocre (or awful!) quilting when you just love the top to begin with.
So, after talking it through with my husband and my mom, I decided to rip it all out and do something else. I decided to hand quilt in the end, and I’m so happy with how it turned out. (I did learn quite a bit about non-free-motion quilting, and I plan to do a separate post on that soon.)
I think the hand quilting adds a special touch, which is nice since it’s for family. I make so many baby quilts for friends or really for almost any baby gift I give, and it’s nice to do something a bit more special when it’s for a baby who will be special to me! It also makes for a much softer quilt, which is nice for a baby. I’m hoping it will actually be used in the crib once he’s past the SIDS stage. I’ve used the baby quilt I made for my son in his crib with him since he was about a year old, and he loves it.
I’ve been finding it hard to get a good full-quilt shot since the weather has been so icky in the midwest. Another obstacle to a good wide shot: my son has learned how to photobomb.
I brought a bunch of fabrics to my sister-in-law’s house for her to choose from. I just love the ones she picked out. The gray Faux Bois on the back is from the Les Amis line by Patty Sloniger. When we were choosing fabrics, there was still plenty available online (my piece was too small for the back). By the time I got around to ordering a month later it was all sold out—almost EVERYWHERE. I finally found some at one online shop, but it was the only one I did find in about ten google pages, so I think I really lucked out with that. I’ve learned my lesson on waiting to order!
The binding she chose was a wood grain print from a Kate Spain line. I used up my last bit of this, which is unfortunate since I loved it so much, but at least it was for a good cause, and it really looks great along the edge.
Once the baby is born, I’m going to have a friend embroider a quilt label for me with his birth information on it. I’ll hand stitch it on to the back afterward. I think the personalized labels really add a special touch when it’s for family.