Homemade Baby Blanket Roundup – Guest Post

4SQUAREDESIGN

 

 

 

Knit, crochet and patchwork baby blankets make incredibly thoughtful baby shower gifts that both parents and children will treasure for years to come. They’re incredibly customizable, since you can use any color you want and incorporate all types of fun fabric patterns. Next time you’re looking for a gift for an expectant mother, try one of these super-cute baby blankets.


Knitted Chevron Blanket: This blanket offers both a throwback to the 1970’s and a modern adaptation on the trendy chevron stripe. Because the yarn is doubled, the piece works up quickly. The pattern is easy enough that a beginning knitter can follow, since it requires nothing more than the knit stitch and slip stitch. You’ll need seven skeins of cotton yarn and a size 11 circular knitting needle that’s 24 or 32 inches long.

1STBLANKETCROCHET

Self Binding Swaddle Blanket: Find two complimentary colors of soft flannel for this blanket, one piece measuring 43 inches squared and the other measuring 33 inches squared. While this blanket comes together easily it required a fold that can be tricky for beginners to wrap their heads around, so it makes a nice advanced beginner project. Sewn from the inside out, the project comes together and gets turned right side out before finishing. The soft flannel fabric won’t scratch baby’s skin and is machine washable.

2NDBABYBLANKET

Knit Striped Blanket with Triangle Edges: The edges on this blanket set it apart and allow you to incorporate bright baby colors. To create the blanket base, knit two rows at a time, alternating colors every two rows. While the original calls for only two colors, you can use more! Cast on 100 stitches and knit until the blanket measures 27 inches by 32 inches. To create the triangle edging, use this tutorial.

3RDBLANKETBACK

Easy Quilted Baby Blanket: When time is of the essence, look no further than this pattern. You’ll need one yard each of fleece and cotton fabric in contrasting or coordinating colors. Trim your fabric to clean up the edges, then place the “right side” of each together, so you are looking at the back of the fabric. Pin into place, leaving a 7-inch opening. Sew up the entire blanket, except for your 7-inch edge. Turn the blanket right-side out and close the gap with a 7-inch piece of fusible webbing.

4quiltsbabyblanket

Follow the Lines Baby Quilt: For expert crafters looking for a fun baby blanket project, this Martha Stewart tutorial has what you need. The basic pattern is easy enough, but the hand quilting finish adds interest and skill to this piece. Start with one yard of printed cotton for the decorative front, 1/2 yard of cotton for binding and 1-1/4 yards of printed cotton for the back. Clean up the edges and selvages, then baste the front and back and stuff with cotton batting. Once the basics have come together, hand quilt along the pattern lines. You can get as detailed or abstract as you want here, so just start by outlining all of the large shapes across the quilt. Once that’s done, complete the medium shapes and then work the small ones. When you decide you like the look and feel of the quilt, stop and sew on the binding.

hangingquiltpic

These are just some of the wonderful and diverse baby blanket ideas out there for crafters, all of which are perfect for baby showers and newborn gifts. There are so many fabulous and simple blanket ideas that it would be impossible to do all of them justice. If you’ve got a favorite time-tested baby blanket pattern, share it in the comments section.

About the Author:

Danielle blogs on behalf of Sears and other brands she uses. She’s currently making a baby blanket to line her baby niece’s new crib.
Read her work at eatbreatheblog.com.

Quilting Tips – Guest Post

Quilting is a labor of love. It’s one of the most tedious craft arts I know but the number of steps I have to take with my pieces only brings me closer to them. There is a lot to learn. Much of it must be done through trial and error. I’ve encountered a lot of snags in my quilt making but machine maintenance, fraying and photography were some of my larger stumbling blocks. Read my tips on these areas to help your quilting be a cut above the rest.

With machine quilting your machine is your livelihood. It’s important to keep in top condition. Whenever you aren’t using the machine, have it covered. Dust, lint and hair are the greatest enemies of a sewing machine. You should get in the practice of cleaning your sewing machine after each project. Remove the needle plate and clean the inside like you mean it—toothbrushes work great. Have your machine serviced once and year and don’t forget to oil it regularly yourself. While operating, change your needle regularly. A sewing machine needle shouldn’t last more than eight hours of work.


My favorite thing about quilting is the variety of materials you can pull together. With all the odd places I gather fabric from, washing is necessary. Unfortunately, washing and drying loose fabric pieces can ruin them if done improperly. Before washing make sure that your fabric is free of any strings. If washed (or worst, dried) with fraying string then the pieces will further unravel. The string can also tangle around the fabric piece and it will crumple like an accordion. This is even worse with constructed sections. The heat of the dryer will pull these excess strands and the section could be ruined. Before washing your quilt pieces carefully trim each edge. You don’t need to cut off a lot of fabric, but make your cuts complete. Throwing your sections in the wash with fresh edges will make all the difference.

Photographing fabric and fiber can be difficult. The texture of a quilt is one of its most amazing qualities, but shoddy photography can leave it looking flat. Using a flash bulb will eliminate shadows from the picture—eliminating the appearance of depth. To photograph your fabric works shoot them at an angle. Forty-five degrees is about perfect. The angle helps create small shadows, making the texture pop. Choose light carefully. Using the light in your home can alter the color of your work. It will look bluer or more yellow depending on the bulb. Natural light is the best. See if you can get natural light coming from just one source. Early morning and late evening sun are ideal.

About The Author

Danielle is an avid crafter who blogs on behalf of Sears and other prestigious brands. From happy stitching accidents to destroying a wool quilt in the washing machines, she has had quite a bit of creation drama. But for love of craft she will be buried with her hot glue gun. Read her work at Eat Breathe Blog

First Basic Steps To Creating A Family Memory Quilt

quilts

 

 

 

Creating a memory quilt for your family would be something that would both be fun and rewarding. It would be fun trying to come up with all kinds of ideas that could go into such a thoughtful project. It would also be personally rewarding just from completing the project and to also see the look on your family’s faces when they see it done.

So, what needs to be done before you attempt to tackle a memory quilt? Have a look at the following steps, tips, and suggestions as to what to include in your project and also how to go about completing it.


1. The very first step to creating such a quilt is to save all the memorabilia that is needed for it. Many people sell their used baby clothing items at yard or garage sales. Some pass them onto relatives or friends. But if you decide to create a memory quilt, you will want to hold onto all the favorites. A short list could include…

Sports Uniforms
Cheerleading Outfits
Favorite Shirts
Favorite Jeans
Prom Dresses
Old Favorite Blankets
Baby Clothing Items
Baby Blankets

2. Do you have the appropriate machine for sewing the quilt top, and actually quilting it? A lot of thought needs to go into choosing a machine that will do the job. Some people that do a lot of quilting have separate machines for sewing the top and quilting. And some have one that does both.

3. Do you have a quilting pattern in mind? By a quilting pattern, I mean the design you sew into the quilt after the quilt top is completed and you’re ready to sew it together with a pattern. Your mother, grandmother, or other relatives may have patterns, or you can get lots of free patterns online or at a fabric retail shop.

4. You can choose to create and sew the quilt top, and then hire someone to quilt it for you. This would be an option for people that don’t like to quilt or don’t have the time.

5. Decide on some material that you will use for the back of your quilt. This could be a neutral color like, white or off white…or any material that would compliment the other colors in the quilt.

Some General Ideas For Memory Quilts

Photos

Pictures your children have made for you, transfer parts of those pics onto quilt blocks

Embroider your family’s names onto quilt blocks

Baby footprints and handprints

Birthday dates

Wedding dates

You could also work some buttons off of clothing items into the quilt, as well as favorite ribbons.

Another idea would be fabric painting. You could have each family member decorate and paint blocks or squares.

These are just a few ideas. There are numerous ideas you can come up with when making a family memory quilt. I plan on making one myself after my son and daughter-in-law are done with having children. 🙂

You can find more crafting articles by Tammy Here

livelaughlove