A scrappy, stash-busting birthday quilt

Monday, November 02, 2015

It may have been a bit ambitious to make a one-year-old baby a quilt for her birthday, but she was delighted. She unwrapped it, picked it up, and hugged it with her tiny baby arms. She now points at the squares, and tries to find funny shapes. Clever girl.

I started making this quilt months ago (okay, actually maybe a year ago. Or longer.). I cut up some of my favourite fabrics in 2 inch squares, and then added to the stash every time I had a fabric scrap. I then pieced the squares together one-by-one as the stash grew... LONGEST and most drawn-out method of making a postage stamp quilt ever. The sensible thing to do would have been to piece strips of fabric and cut them out from there, but then I couldn't use up my hoarded scraps. Ah well.

Each square has a story to tell. There's the one that looks like dad's favourite shirt, and the one I bought four years ago at the Quilt Festival in Birmingham. There's the one made from my very favourite tiny scrap of fabric I've saved for years, and some from my first ever charm pack. There's the one that's leftover fabric from her first party dress, and one that was the lining of her sun hat. 

I added a 2 inch white sashing around the quilt edge, and backed the quilt in one huge piece of Lizzy House's Pearl Bracelet fabric in Glacier. Love.

The binding is a scrappy binding made from the same fabric in three colourways: pink, lime green and grey. I couldn't decide which colour I liked best, so used them all. I figured that the front of the quilt was so bold and colourful that it  needed something special around the edges.

I quilted around each square with straight lines, and then quilted a grid around the whole quilt, going round and round in a tight square with lines about 1cm apart. Such neat quilting... so unlike me. Really love the grid effect, it makes the fabric go all crinkly when it folds up, like an old, much-loved quilt. I think it helps that I used two layers of wadding to make it a bit thicker than usual.

I'm so happy with this quilt, I put so much love and work into it; even pulling out seams when squares didn't line up (!) and carefully lining everything up so there were no identical squares side-by-side. I can't believe I finished it (A) in time and (B) at all. #happy.

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