Monday, October 11, 2010

K.I.F.'s First Quilt - - The Quilt that Started It All

This is the very first quilt I ever made.  It was almost exactly five years ago.   My boyfriend at the time (now my husband!)'s sister was pregant with her first child and I didn't know what to get for a baby gift.  A law-school friend and now quilting mentor (who has her very own blog here:!) insisted that I could make a baby quilt in a weekend, and so the fun began!  Although this quilt definitely took longer than a weekend to finish, we were able to buy the fabric and piece the top in a day.  (A very long day...)  We had such a great time, that we've now made numerous quilts together and almost always go to our fabric store together when we're starting new projects.

This quilt was a very basic log cabin around this fun printed zoo animals.  Readers of my blog will recognize the zoo animals from another quilt that I made out of my stash. 

It is fun seeing the original pictures of this quilt.  Since it was made, it has been very well-loved.  My niece recently brought it on a family vacation, and it has definitely faded and been worn in!  There is nothing better than seeing a quilt you put so much time and effort into being well used though. 

I only quilted in the ditch around each piece, but I think it turned out well.  I hand-quilted the center block, but machine quilted each other block.  Machine quilting is supposed to hold up better to wear and tear, so it's probably a good thing I didn't hand quilt more of this one.  Since this quilt, however, I have hand-quilted every quilt.  Hopefully they hold up, but all of my quilts come with a lifetime service guarantee in case any seams come undone or any quitling gets loose.  

This is a very basic quilt that anyone really could piece together in a weekend.  All you have to do is find a patterned fabric that you like.  Decide what size blocks you are going to make by measuring each of the squares.  (Sometimes with these fabrics, the squares are not perfectly equal, but just pick a size and stick with it for all of the blocks.)  Then cut your log cabin prints into 2-inch strips, and start sewing.  You can go around each block as many times as you want... using four fabrics and two "frames" around each block worked well for this quilt.

I was not planning on doing any sashing, but once we had all of the log cabin blocks together it was obvious that it needed something coherent to pull it all together and to make it more girly.  Luckily, Elle has the best stash ever, and so this perfect pink was in there just waiting to be used on this quilt!

This quilt had a pieced back.  Elle is a big fan of pieced backs.  I have to say, by the time I get to the back, I'm usually just ready to get the thing assembled and start quilting it.  This one definitely turned out well and I will have to think about doing some sort of pieced back on the new quilt I am making for my niece.


  1. As the mother of the above mentioned niece, I have to say what a wonderful gift this was to receive. I knew it would be a meaningful keepsake from Aunt Anne, but I can't believe how much use it has endured. It has been Katharine's regular bedding for 3 years now. There have been many nights that I have comforted her by using the quilt as a reminder of Anne and Uncle Cillian - and reminding Katharine how loved she is. Keep up the good work Anne!

  2. I guess this is a good hint that I should actually start blogging...and I am very inspired now (both for blogging and quilting!). I've almost finished piecing the t-shirt quilt - it looks amazing! I'm just working on borders, and then I have to find a big enough floorspace to pin it! Thanks for selecting the perfect sashing fabric!

  3. Hi Anne - It's me again. I have decided that I want to hang Tristan's NYC quilt on his bedroom wall. Where can I get the decorative bits and pieces to do this?

  4. There are two ways to do this. One is to add strips to the top of the quilt that can be tied on to a rod. The other way is to add a tube-type sleeve onto the back to slide through the rod. The sleeve method has the benefit of allowing the quilt to hang with even tension across it, to prevent stretching and warping. The strips on the top of the quilt can be very cute, though. I will post about the method for each in near future posts.