I have way too many genes from my amazing grandma to not be busy making useful things. I am not a craft person. No siree. My poor children only learned what 'art' was in the last six months. However, if something will be eaten, worn, or used a lot I am typically up for attempting to make it.
Our biggest project in sewing class was a quilt. I have since adjusted this idea and made three more.
If you want to make your kids custom bedding that will hold up to many washings stay tuned! I will begin the process in this post and finish it later this week.
We originally bought Z a comforter at a large department store, but one wash told me not to repeat that mistake. About three years ago I made T's quilt and bought additional fabric to make J one to match a year later.
Now I am on to the boys. M is ready for a bed so now I am making two at a time. The biggest challenge this go around was finding fabric for Z's theme request: space and rockets. After browsing and purchasing from most fabric stores within a 100 mile radius and also purchasing from Creative Quilt Kits I am off and sewing.
Planning before shopping is paramount. Measure the bed first. Both of my patterns below were made for twin beds, but the boys have twin longs. I try to reduce any fabric waste. So my squares are usually either 9-10 inches (in the girls quilts) or 13-14 inches (boys). That way I can cut 4 or 3 squares, respectively, across a 42 inch bolt. And I always use three different patterned fabrics and one solid for a border. The boys will have an eight or nine inch wide border and the girls have about a six to seven inch one.
Next, I plan the pattern. I have done two different patters. I draw it out on paper using A B C to represent each of my patterned fabrics.
The boys' pattern looks like this:
A B C
B C A
C A B
A B C
B C A
C A B
The girls' pattern was this:
C B A C B
B A C B A
A C B A B
C B A B C
B A B C A
A B C A B
B C A B C
I make my quilts reversible because it looks nicer and it isn't that much more work. It costs a bit more and I do know people who use a flat sheet to back their quilts. Do what suits you. So, for the boys I am essentially making four sides of the boy pattern above. Now comes the math.
For one reversible quilt in the boys pattern I needed 12 squares of each fabric. That is four squares long (3 squares wide) or 56 inches or 1.56 yards of each fabric. I bought 2 yards per quilt per fabric to have extra for pillows and/or mistakes. The girl pattern is a bit more complicated as there is an uneven amount of squares of each fabric. You and your calculator are on your own there.
In the past I have purchased the border fabric after I sew together the squares to ensure I get enough and to spread out the cost over time.
For one side of a twin quilt I usually need about three yards of border fabric (if you are doing more than one quilt side it does not necessarily mean you double or triple this number as you will get more than four strips across a bolt). As an example: for the four sides I am doing currently I purchased seven yards total for the border.
After purchasing and washing your fabric you are ready to cut your squares. Don't cut your border yet. Measure carefully and try to cut as straight as possible, but don't fret over perfect squares. As you sew you will be able to even out some slight size discrepancies.
Here is what my stack looked like after cutting.
Now you are ready to sew. Sew the squares with right sides together to make each row (follow your ABC pattern). Next pin the first and second row together, lining up the seams. Sew right sides together. Continue by adding on the third row then sew and continue on until your quilt looks something like this:
Now measure for the border, cut and sew.
Watch for the rest of the instructions later this week!