baby quilt – the central panel

i’ve got something i can live with.

i sewed all the strips once, then cut the resultant fabric across the first stitching lines, perpendicular, because i wanted to avoid cute diagonals.  i had to arrange everything then, and so i figured out how many squares to offset (i worked off the thermal squares).  at first i had a step-pyramid thing going, but then i realized i had to sew each piece to its own end to make a circle, and then the lengths of fabric went together much more clearly.

so i sewed one length to another, and this time i pinned them first, because the first time, when i was sewing the first strips together, i didn’t, and all the thermal pieces stretched out to almost twice their length, which meant that nothing went together by eye, even tho that’s how i sewed them.  you learn.

i ended up with a large loop of little fabric squares.  i cut the length in half, and sewed the two halves together sideways, and came up with something that’s about 35×45, which fits inside of 45×60 with a 10×20 border.  but oh well.

so now what to do?  i have a nice bland background against which to put my startling clothes, but i need to think about a border now.

will i use the arms and feet i already cut out?  i’ll have to cut them into front half and back half, and may  not be able to use the back halves, i don’t know.  i should be able to use both halves of the feet pieces, tho.  that’ll go all the way around twice, so i may attempt to make a bargello strip out of the arms and legs.

baby quilt preliminary thoughts

i’m trying to come up with a design.  i just got my quilter’s sateen from dharma trading, and it’s a beautiful fabric.  i have enough to do the back and some of the details on the front with sateen, which of course i am going to dye something beautiful, probably using scrunch dyeing.

i sat around for awhile and played with the scraps i’d already cut up.  because i got a wild hair when i was collecting materials, i ended up cutting about a dozen baby clothes into strips – one strip went right across the top of the outfit from one sleeve to the other, and the other strip was a leg.  i messed around, pinning one sleeve to another with all the tops facing one way, so that the cut edge would theoretically be even when i sewed them together.  it looks funky.

then i put the legs together and pinned them into a long strip of leg and feet.  it also looks funky.

but both of these ideas would work as borders.

then i’ve got three baby blankets of different fabrics.  i can cut these into strips also and sew them together for a bargello kind of effect.

what i’m getting at is that i have two candidates for the face of the quilt – the arms and legs, and the baby blankets.  i’m not certain i won’t end up using both kinds of fabrics for a highly textured background.

it’s going to be a sew-as-you-go strip patchwork.  if i cut and strip it enough times, it will have small squares that blend together at a distance.  and then i can sew the whole baby clothing onto it as applique.  i guess i’ll start by cutting and stripping the baby blankets.  then before i go too far in cutting and stripping, maybe i’ll see if i can use the arms and legs into the mix, or will it look better if it goes on as a border.  maybe even elegantized by judicious use (since when am i judicious?) of the sateen.

the thing will be riddled with snaps.  i cut out many of the rows of snaps when i dismembered the clothes, and i can easily strip them either separately or in with the background stripping.  for the mental wellbeing of the mother to be, i will not be using any buttons or anything else that can come off.  but i will be playing games with pockets and snaps, because i can.  if the quilt is used as the kid gets older, they’ll have great fun snapping and unsnapping various parts of the quilt.

but at this point i have no idea, still, what the design will be.  will i try to use all four of the kid pajamas and make them interact, or will i just use one?  i thought of making it look like an adams family baby outfit, but decided that would freak mom out too much.  i thought of appliqueing an outfit right below where it would come when actually tucked around a baby, but i thought that might be a bit creepy.  if it wasn’t creepy, i might consider putting four outfits down so that no matter which way you turned the quilt it would still look like a kid cutout.  but we’ll see.