Sewing Project #1 | A Baby Blanket

Sewing Project #1 | A Baby Blanket

When i found out my lovely friend was having a baby; i knew i wanted to do something special. I decided to challenge myself and make a baby patchwork blanket. Obviously, I'm still a bit of a novice when it comes to sewing but i did a lot of research and found many helpful sites to help me and I'm pretty proud of the outcome.

This post isn't going to be a tutorial, i will cover some of the process i went through but i will link any sites that i used at the end of the post if you're looking for a step by step tutorial.

Sewing Project #1 | A Baby Blanket

Sewing Project #1 | A Baby Blanket

Sewing Project #1 | A Baby Blanket

At first, i really struggled on finding a colour scheme but then i found out she was having a boy which made it a lot easier. I'm so excited to meet him - I'm scheduling this post ahead of time so who knows, he might have made an appearance by the time you're reading this. I didn't actually tell my friend that i was making this just in case it didn't turn out very well but i asked a few questions about the nursery and the colour scheme she was aiming for and i used that as my inspiration. She didn't want to go with the typical baby boy colours - she wanted to incorporate neutral colours too, like greys, lemons and beige.

I actually had a lot of fun gathering the fabric - i bought it from fabric shops, i also bought a lot of fat quarters from Ebay and i also used a few scraps that i had lying around that fit the colour scheme. My absolute favourite fabric is the little dinosaurs - i just think it's adorable. The amount of fabric you need depends on how many squares you want and the size of them. Also, a little side note - it's not the cheapest of projects to undertake so do bear that in mind.

Before sewing them together; i highly recommend laying each square out and deciding on the order that way - i found it really helpful and it meant that each square was well spaced out. Cutting the squares, sewing them altogether and then ironing all the seams flat is pretty easy but it can be quite a tedious task, i did mine in bits rather than attempting everything all in one go and i found that helped me stay focused.

I forgot to document the next part which is adding the wadding and the back fabric - it's not easy to do sewing/quilting all the three layers together. After sewing around the edges, i simple followed the patch work seams and sewed over them to get that bubbly quilted effect, it also makes sure the three layers stick together really well too.

Useful Links for the Blanket/Quilting:
lellaboutique.blogspot.com/2011/06/week-1-fabric-selection-and-pre-washing_30.html
http://lellaboutique.blogspot.co.uk/2011/07/week-2-cutting-fabric-arranging-blocks.html
http://lellaboutique.blogspot.co.uk/2011/07/week-3-sewing-it-together-basting.html

I loosely based my process on the steps in these links - i didn't follow it religiously step by step but this blog is really helpful and she posts a lot of other quilting projects too.

Sewing Project #1 | A Baby Blanket

Sewing Project #1 | A Baby Blanket

The binding was by far my least favourite part of doing the blanket and also the bit i struggled with the most. The first part went really well but when it came to hand stitching it on the backside of the blanket, it didn't go as neat as I'd hope. As you can see from the photo the stitching along the binding is quite visible and it shouldn't be but no matter how much i tried i just couldn't quite get the knack of doing it so it was invisible.

Useful Links for Binding:
http://lellaboutique.blogspot.co.uk/2011/07/week-4-quilting-binding.html
http://www.heatherbailey.com/FreePattern/HeatherBailey_ContinuousQuiltBinding.pdf

Sewing Project #1 | A Baby Blanket

Sewing Project #1 | A Baby Blanket

I know my blanket isn't perfect but for my very first attempt I'm actually really proud of myself and it's turned out way better than i ever anticipated. I definitely need to work on my binding skills but I'm just really happy with the quilting and i think the squares and colours go together really well.

I've now passed it onto my friend and she really loved it, which made me really happy. Ive put a lot of time, effort and money into it so to know it wasn't a waste to do has made it all worthwhile. I'm now thinking about making myself a big patchwork blanket too in time for next winter.

What do you think?
Natalie xx

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