Thursday, April 10, 2014

DIY Flannel Baby Rag Quilt

It's hard to believe, but this is my 500th blog post!
So I thought I'd share a special little project for someone small and sweet!
 

Long before sweet baby Clare arrived, I got the idea in my head that one day I would make each grandchild a quilt to welcome them into the world - a gift made by hand, with lots of love. I imagined something soft and cuddly to put on the floor for playtime when they were a baby and to curl up with at naptime as they got older. I wasn't thinking family heirloom. A blanket that gets dragged around and loved until it falls to shreds was more what I had in mind. I decided that a cozy flannel rag quilt would be perfect!

 
At one of our very first link parties over two years ago (party #10), I featured this rag quilt from Northern Cottage. This image has always stuck in the back of my mind as an inspiration of what I wanted to create one day. I had seen rag quilts made from squares, but I especially loved the stripes on this one. *Northern Cottage now has a lovely little Etsy shop with cozy rag quilts and sweet fabric garlands!
 
 
Now here's how I made my flannel baby rag quilt ... The choices at my local fabric store seemed a little too juvenile, but I found a wonderful selection of flannel at Fabric.com. They also have a really nifty feature called the design wall, where you can see your fabric selections side by side. I chose a mix of pink, yellow and coral, very much like the color scheme of Megan's vintage inspired garden baby shower. And the wall behind the crib in the nursery has a big world map, so it's a colorful and lively space!

 
I ordered 1/2 yard of 8 coordinating flannel prints and 2 yards of solid white flannel for the center layer.
 
 
I ended up with a little extra of this fabric, which was a nice bonus.


I already had a rotary cutter, a cutting mat and a quilter's rule. These are not a necessity, but they sure made cutting the strips a whole lot easier! Each quilt strip is made of three layers, a matching top and bottom with a layer of white flannel in the middle.

 
The width of my strips varied from 3" to 6" wide and I made two strips of each pattern. No need to measure the length of your strips, just use entire width of your fabric. You'll even everything up later. The hardest part was doing the math so that I didn't waste any fabric. I used seven of the patterns for the body of the quilt and put one aside for the binding.


 
After I had all my little fabric sandwiches made, I just stitched a straight line down the center of each one. This hold the layers together and helps create the quilted look.

 
 I ended up using the bonus fabric, so there are four strips of that pattern. I wanted a generous quilt that wouldn't be outgrown too quickly. The completed size of my quilt is 41" by 47".


Then the fun part was laying all the pieces out in a pleasing pattern.


 
Next, I sewed all the pieces together with a 1/2 inch seam allowance. Notice how all the seams are facing up. This will be the ruffled side of the quilt.



Now is the time to even up all the edges.


At this point, you can simply sew a seam with a 1/2 inch seam allowance all the way around the quilt and create a ruffled outside edge.
 

But I've done some small quilting projects and just liked the look of a nice bound edge. Plus I found a cute little polka dot fabric and decided it would make the perfect binding. And really, it's a snap to do. Again you are dealing with simple strips of fabric.  You need one long continuous strip to go all the way around your quilt. Just pin the strips together at right angles ...


stitch ...
 

cut ...


and you end up with a nice long strip that becomes your binding.


I don't have any photos of how to attach the binding and there's a reason for that ..... I started this quilt the day after our holiday sale in November. I couldn't wait to get started. I knew it wouldn't take long and our little one wasn't expected for another few weeks. Well, I was sitting at the dining room table one evening working on the binding when the phone rang and we learned that sweet baby Clare was about to make her arrival three weeks early!  Let's just say that there were a few anxious hours that went well into the wee hours of the morning and thoughts of taking pictures went right out of my head.  A calm husband, encouraging friends and working on this quilt was exactly what I needed at that moment! ... And if you want to try your hand at binding a quilt, there are lots of great tutorials and videos out there, so don't be afraid to give it a try!

 
The next morning, I met this little bundle of love for the very first time! At just over 5 pounds, she really was tiny! And let me just tell you, it was love at first sight!!!
 
 
When we got home from the hospital, it was right back to my quilt and time to make lots and lots of little snips in all the seams to create the pretty ruffles. Just be careful not to cut through the seams!




The final step was to wash and dry the quilt a few times. All the loose little strings came out, little ruffles began to form and the quilt just got softer and softer!


It's so cozy and cuddly ...


and turned out even better than I imagined!


The smooth side of the quilt is pretty too!


This is a project that even a beginner can tackle. If you can handle a scissors and sew a straight line, I promise that you can make a rag quilt too!


Our little baby Clare is a few months old now and loves playtime on her quilt! She is the sweetest, happiest baby, so full of smiles and giggles. She just totally melts my heart!!!

 


 
And I just love that I was making her quilt as she was coming into the world!


I hope there will be a few more quilts in my future one day!
***Wink!***

I'm sharing with ...

36 comments:

marie said...

Such a sweet girl...and such a pretty quilt. I hope you have the opportunity to make many more!

At Rivercrest Cottage said...

It's hard to find something cuter than that quilt, but the baby wins hands down! I might even try to make one as you sure make it look easy.

Julie @ followyourheartwoodworking said...

You did a beautiful job with that quilt, Sharon. I'm sure it will be treasured for many years.

Lynn@FernAvenueBlog said...

Congrats on the gorgeous new addition!! I love the quilt..it really turned out just beautiful!

Cassie @ Primitive & Proper said...

oh my goodness! she is so adorable!!!!!! i am in love and i have never even met her! and the quilt is awesome, too!

Susan - Uniquely Yours or Mine said...

OMG, what a little cutie she is! I LOVE the quilt so much wish I had a big one for me!

the girlfriend gap said...

You did such a great job for your sweetie pie! Enjoy all of the love you will share together. Hope there will be many more! Being a grandma is wonderful!
Janita

KC Coake said...

The quilt is so pretty! It is almost as pretty as she is. ♥

Gail Wilson said...

Sharon,

I've never seen a rag quilt before. I love it!
Baby Clare is growing so fast. She is so darn adorable!

thanks for sharing

gail
ps congrats on 500!

NanaDiana said...

Sharon- That is SOOO very sweet. I just love it and LOOK AT THAT BABY! OMG- She is SOOO cute. Just look at those eyes and you can see the personality in her already. She is beautiful- xo Diana

Our Pinteresting Family said...

Could she be any cuter? Love her! I love the quilt you made for her. What beautiful colors and fabric choices you made! I'm sure she will treasure it always.

The Painted Drawer said...

Beautiful quilt for a beautiful baby! I'm totally going to try this one. Thanks for sharing!

twin-oaks-studio.com said...

OMG I love it! The edges do look like girlie ruffles. So sweet! So is your grand baby! :) Enjoy! -- Pauline

twin-oaks-studio.com said...

OMG I love it! The edges do look like girlie ruffles. So sweet! So is your grand baby! :) Enjoy! -- Pauline

twin-oaks-studio.com said...

OMG I love it! The edges do look like girlie ruffles. So sweet! So is your grand baby! :) Enjoy! -- Pauline

Mary Vitullo said...

Wow, she is definitely the cutest baby ever…….and that quilt turned out so beautiful. Love how you laid out everything in your tutorial. You gave most of us the confidence to try and make one. I'm sure baby Clare is going to enjoy it for years to come. Pinning this one. Thank you.

Mary Vitullo said...

Wow, she is definitely the cutest baby ever…….and that quilt turned out so beautiful. Love how you laid out everything in your tutorial. You gave most of us the confidence to try and make one. I'm sure baby Clare is going to enjoy it for years to come. Pinning this one. Thank you.

Hetty said...

O Sharon, this is a darling quilt you made for little Clare! You choose such nice colors, thank you very much for a great tutorial.

{northern cottage} said...

Hello dearie - what an honor it is to be a teeny tiny piece of something so belovedly special. She is absolutely stunning!! Made.my.day!! Mwahhh!!

♥ NORTHERN COTTAGE
http://www.northerncottage.net
http://www.NorthernCottage.etsy.com

Cathy Carroll said...

Sharon, Clare is such a cutie... you are so blessed. I do not quilt but have wanted to make a rag quilt for a long time - you make it look so easy... I made each of our grandchildren afgans when they were babies and they still have them - even the ones that are young adults. Loved doing it - now to venture on to quilts....

Lisa said...

This is so perfectly sweet!! Thank you for sharing the most precious parts of your life! And, your talents know no bounds!!

Michelle Pitts said...

A beautiful quilt for a beautiful baby....HPS Michelle

Julia Nyanyo said...

First, congrats on your 500th post that is quite an achievement!
Second, this is one of the loveliest things I've seen in ages! I want to go back 19 years and make one for my daughter (I did make a throw on the floor, sling in the washing machine quilt for her but NOWHERE near this beautiful)I might just have to make one anyway and wait for a friend to have a baby to give it too!
Thirdly Clare is gorgeous, but I think you know that anyway!

Kathi Riemer said...

This quilt is adorable. I have had a flannel rag quilt on my to-do list. I am inspired! Thank you!

concretenprimroses said...

This turned out great and Claire is pretty great too!
Kathy

France Nadeau ❅ inspiration imagination creation said...

What a beautiful and colorful blanket! I appreciated seeing the picture about how you added the binding. I never made a rag quilt but it's on my list of project to try. I was a little puzzled about adding the binding with the extra fabric sticking up. Thank you for showing us.

Liz said...

Lovely! And the color combination is just beautiful!

Patricia Krank said...

That is just about the cutest quilt I've ever seen. How clever you are Sharon. Thanks for sharing such a great tutorial.
Blessings,
Patti

Laurel Stephens said...

Sweetest quilt for the sweetest baby! I loved all the photos of Clare, who is just so darling.

Artsy VaVa said...

Your quilt is so pretty! What a lucky little girl to have it.

Robin Johnson said...

Oh how adorable. The quilt and the model. I have been wanting to try one of these quilts for a very long time. May have to move it up on the list a little.

Night Garden Design said...

Really well done! I love the mix of colors and the interesting ruffle texture. Good job!

Kimberly Lewis said...

Baby Clare is a adorable!! The quilt is beautiful! Pinned! Thank you for being part of our party! Please stop by Tuesday morning and share one of your brilliant projects. Congratulations on 500! http://loulougirls.blogspot.com/
Happy Saturday! Lou Lou Girls

T'onna Peters said...

What a lovely quilt! I've been wanting to make a quilt, so I'm going to pin yours because your instructions make me feel like I can actually make a similar quilt! Also, Clare is sooooooooo adorable!!!

Navy Wifey Peters @ Submarine Sunday Link Party

Michele Reynolds said...

Adorable, love your colors! Pinned

Danielle Wagasky said...

I love this! I want to make one! Thanks for linking up to the Feature Friday Link Party!