And so it begins. The cascade of baby-prep posts. Dear Follower (yes, there’s really only one of you), I cannot promise anything in terms of when this wave of baby crap will end. It’s really all down-hill from here.
In the last few weeks, I’ve been working on my very first quilt. The fabrics are not historically accurate for this project because I want foxes on everything, but the techniques are. This is my pattern:
Cut squares, sew squares together, add batting and backing, affix trim, sew yarn knots at each intersection. Easy!
I was inspired by my sister-in-law’s play mat for her 8-month-old. It’s a play mat that I’ve seen many times online and in the living rooms of other moms. It’s a bright colored, padded, and has soft, tented poles holding up delightful objects of immediate baby concern. When I conducted a cursory search to purchase such an item, I was met with the following:
My first response, being very frugal and deeply egocentric, was of course, “Psha, I can make that!”
A few months ago, when I visited my Great Aunt Norvella, we chatted at length about my Great Grandmother Kingsley’s innovative solutions to the challenges of the Great Depression. She was an excellent cook and sewer, using old shirts to make underwear, getting second-hand dresses and remaking them to the current fashion, and using newspapers to draft her own patterns. When Nor was taking home ec in high school, GG Edna took umbrage with the instructor’s approach, declaring the materials too expensive and the pattern instructions filled with unnecessary steps! Norvella herself being a very accomplished quilter, I was inspired to create my own alternative baby play mat.
My design includes a simple quilted 3×3 ft. square and spare foam tubes used for pipe insulation from my basement to create the tented toy mobile thing. I’ll make fabric tubes to cover the foam, sewing little loops that I can clip handmade toys of immediate baby concern with carabiners. I am still working on how this tented element will affix to the quilt and stand up … see part 2 for the conclusion on that one.
And so I began…
I had a few hang-ups. Namely, when I sewed the trim into one long strip, my first attempt was all sorts of crazy.
At this point, the binding is sewn to the front and pinned to the back. I’m currently deciding whether I will sew the back on and let my seam show or if I will hand-sew a slip stitch on the backing to make the seam invisible. I’m torn between quick-and-easy and the more-polished-finish.
What would Great Grandma Kingsley do? Would she add an extra step or would she just shove it through the machine…