Friday, August 23, 2013

Pathways Baby Quilt Finish

I love when my husband requests quilts. I feel like it is his way of telling me to buy more fabric. :) This quilt is for his coworker's new baby boy, Landon.

I made this quilt using the SewCraftyJess's Jungle Path Tutorial at Moda Bake Shop. I was looking for a quick quilt pattern using precuts and I loved how this particular pattern used every bit of the precuts for the blocks, binding *and* the backing. My sister made the observation that the blocks look like "L" for Landon. I wish I could say that I thought of that beforehand, but it is just a happy accident!

The fabric is Boy Crazy from Riley Blake Designs. Since I don't know the recipient of this quilt, I wanted to stick with stereotypical boy fabric. I love the tiny robot and monster in the main fabric! There is also a print with tiny little cars. It is completely adorable!

I purchased two charm packs and two jelly rolls, since Riley Blake charm packs and jelly rolls include half the amount of squares/strips as Moda precuts. The second jelly roll was only used for the backing, so I could have just purchased one and used other fabric for the back. There is less print variation in the smaller packs, which is something to think about when choosing fabric for this quilt. There was a perfect number of color prints in this line, so I didn't have to use any cream prints on the front.

The only change I made was skipping Step 3 on the Quilt Back Assembly. During that step, you add white strips to the 44" side to make it 48.5". The strips shouldn't show in the finished quilt. They just give the backing the extra few inches you need for quilting. My backing actually came out a bit shorter than the quilt top, so the white strips would have shown. I used this as an opportunity to add a name strip to lengthen the quilt.

I used a solid backing for the name, since the back was already full of prints. Since there was no background print to preserve, I paper-pieced the name. I used from blank pages... My First Alphabet Pattern. I love the pattern and not having to applique anything made me happy!

I made sure the bottom of the strip lined up with the bottom of the third row of blocks. When I was basting, I lined up the bottom of the name strip on the backing with the "gridlines" in my tile. When I laid down the top I made sure it lined up with the backing seam line and the tile. A little bit overkill, but it helps me feel confident that everything will end up straight!

The quilting is just a basic grid. The lines are approximately 3.625" apart. I quilted a big grid first, making sure the lines went through the charm squares. Then I drew X's in some of the squares to find the center and quilted the rest of the lines.

The only changes I would make in the future (to account for my own carelessness!):
  1. I would make the outside border strips a little wider to give more leeway while trimming and cut the binding strips down from 2.5" to 2.25". I wasn't very careful and the long skinny border strips got a little wonky. I ended up chopping off some of the border while squaring. I also used a 3/8" seam with the 2.5" binding, so I lost more of the border. As a result, the border is smaller than the sashing. 
  2. On step 5 of Quilt Top Assembly, I made all my blocks except for one (row 3, block 4) look exactly like the picture. I would have had more path variation if I had done a portion of them the opposite way (left side with white strip on top/right side with white strip on bottom).

It will be gifted this morning! 

Next up: I have been spending all my spare time working on my first commissioned quilt. It is a Twister quilt and I forgot how long that takes, especially with those 3.5" blocks! My 2-3 week time frame seems a little crazy at this point! As soon as I finish that quilt, I want to finish up my Best Friends quilt.

Linking up with TGIFF which is at Sewing by Moonlight this week and Finish it Up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts.
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