My First Quilt

My mom loves to make quilts.  My mom has also done crochet, knitting, & cross-stitch, but I’m pretty sure that quilting is her favorite.  She’s part of the local quilter’s guild and last fall they had a quilt show.  I attended with my mom & her neighbor and we walked around looking at all the quilts.  It is absolutely amazing what some people come up with and are able to do!  The amount of detail, planning, design, and sheer hard hands-on work that goes into making a quilt is amazing.  So to all of you quilters, here’s to you!! 🙂

Being at the quilt show really inspired me.  When I think of quilts I typically think of “old” looking styles, you know like something my grandma would like.  Not that they aren’t beautiful, but just aren’t really my style!  Love you, Grandma!!!

But, I noticed at the quilt show that there are so many designs that are quite contemporary and not older looking at all.  I got to thinking that I could do that and I wanted to give a try.  I asked my mom & her neighbor what the easiest quilting blocks were, and her neighbor recommended a 9 patch.  She also had a pattern that she let me borrow.

I then took this as an opportunity to spend time with my mom (who was going to teach me how to do this and who had all the materials – machine/etc. required to make the quilt).  My 2nd nephew was due to arrive in a couple of months, so I decided that a small baby quilt would be the perfect thing to start with.

The pattern that I had required 2 types of material (light & dark).  I knew the baby was a boy, but I didn’t necessary want to do the typical blue colors.  But I did want it to be brightly colored.  So I went to the store with my mom and ended up with a teal colored leafy fabric and a teal/yellow/orange/coral polka dot fabric.  Then for the backing I found a bright orange fabric that faded from light to dark.  I was really excited to find fabrics that coordinated together so nicely.

For the next several weeks I spent several hours at my mom’s house working on the quilt.  She taught me how to use a rotary cutter to cut out all of my strips.  We then moved to the sewing machine to sew them together and continued this pattern (cutting, sewing, ironing) until we got all the 9-patch squares put together.

The other squares were simple (just cutting the polka-dot fabric out in a square).  After this we started putting the quilt together alternating the 9-patch with the solid polka-dot piece until the entire quilt front was complete.

At this point we had to add the batting (fluffy, cushioning stuff that makes a quilt so soft and warm) and then put the backing piece on.  I’ll be honest that at this point we were running out of time and mom went ahead and did this entire part for me and had it all basted together.  Basting is just really large stitches done by hand to keep the 3 pieces together (top, batting, backing).  But then I came over and actually did the quilting part.

Mom helped me to machine quilt.  I will admit that at this point I was starting to get tired.  Quilting is a LONG process!!  I like quick results and quilting takes a lot more patience than that.  Quilting on the machine was definitely better for me than hand quilting (because it was faster).  However, the worst part was having to push all that material through the small machine.  I can really see the benefits of a long-arm machine now.

Finally, we were almost finished and had to do the border.  This piece was frustrating for me so mom helped out.  But in the end I was really proud of the final product and have a huge amount of appreciation for all you quilters out there, especially my mom!

I love the design/planning for a quilt, but I would probably be the type of person to let someone else put it together for me…or at least do the final quilting part.

So here’s the final product along with my sweet youngest nephew.  Notice how much he LOVES the quilt?

*Note: this was back shortly after his birth in January 2010.  He is currently 5 months old!

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4 comments

  • I’m not seeing any pics with this post… should I?

    • You sould see the pictures now. I updated that last night and was having a hard time getting the pictures to show up correctly. I ended up deleting it and then realized the picture was on a different computer that I needed to upload it from. My head was killing me so I just went to bed. But I have updated it now so you should be good 🙂

  • I have some pics of the quilt if you want me to email them to you. The site looks great! I’m glad I can add it to the feeds I follow now. 🙂

    • Please do and the same goes for anyone else who has some pictures of this quilt. I didn’t seem to have many so I’m assuming they are on other cameras.