And details on the other quilts I made will be coming soon.
The inspiration for this quilt came from this Rainbow Bunting Baby Quilt that I saw over a year ago on A Pretty Cool Life.
I thought it would be fun to finish the edges with a satin stitch, add some bias tape for the bunting to hang from, and add a little bird for some added sweetness.
It was quick and easy to put together (for a quilt) since the back is all one piece and the bunting is appliqued on.
Sweet Pea loves it...
...as well as the fleece fitted sheet that is tucked in under it.
Unfortunately, there's still more of this...
front-facing book shelves by her bed are a tried-and-true favorite...you can find the tutorial to make them here.)
...and this (those are mischievous eyes)...
I thought I'd share a few details of how I put the quilt together as well as the template for the appliqued pieces.
Here's what you'll need...
- Heat'n Bond Lite or a similar product. You can buy this from the bolt at the fabric store or in packages in the craft section of other stores.
- A little less than 2 yards of background fabric. (I made mine 60 inches long, but you'll want to buy a little more than that to allow for shrinkage when you wash it.)
- Lot of fabric scraps for the bunting triangles. You can have them all different, or could even just stick to a couple of favorite fabrics.
- About 4 yards of bias tape...although I made my own. You can see Dana's tutorial on MADE for more details about how to do that.
- All they typical supplies for sewing: pins, scissors, sewing machine...etc...
- Printed copy of the Free Bird and Bunting Quilt Template. Click Here to Print
I cut out a lot of triangles from my Heat'n Bond Lite. (There are other products that will work too...this is just the one I'm used to. I used 24 triangles for my quilt...but you'll want to cut out a few extra. Once I went to lay it out, I realized that some fabrics didn't go well next to each other and it's nice to have a few extra for experimenting. Iron the Heat'n Bond Lite onto the WRONG side (back) of your fabric, and cut out the fabric triangles.
Then peel off the paper backing and lay them out on your quilt top. I always like something about my quilts to go beyond the borders a bit, so I liked the look of some of the flags on the edges going off the side, but that's personal taste.
I also layed them out so their corners would overlap just a bit. This is because I planned on the top edge being covered up with the bias tap, and I wanted the flags to meet at the edge of the bias tape...not under the bias tape.
Once you're satisfied with where they are, iron them in place. I didn't want them to move while I moved the quilt to the ironing board, so I did a quick ironing job right on my carpet, just to hold them on. (Careful not to melt your carpet!)
Then I moved over to my ironing board, to iron them more thoroughly and make sure all the edges sealed.
You'll especially want to check the tips and corners to see if they're loose and if so, re-iron.
Trim off any overhanging flags.
Now you're ready to sew the edges. I used a satin stitch...which is basically just a zigzag stitch set to a very short stitch length.
When selecting thread for applique, you want the thread to match your fabric as well as possible. If I don't have the exact thread color to match, I generally prefer a slightly darker thread to a thread that's too light. Also, it's not really practical to have bobbin thread for every single color...so I match as close as I can...here I used white.
I start by doing a few short regular stitches to secure the end of my thread.
Then I set the zigzag width and stitch length I wanted. (Each machine will look different here and if you've never appliqued before you'll want to experiment with the stitch length and zigzag width on some scraps before doing your quilt.)
I just satin stitched the two longer sides of the triangles because the shorter side will be covered up by the bias tape. Since the ends were going to be covered up, I did a small straight stitch to secure the end again.
Once all the bunting triangles are satin stitched, I pulled out my bias tape. I made my own half-inch single fold bais tape using Dana's tutorial, but you can also buy it pre-made.
I sewed one side, close to the edge...
pieces in the pattern are reverse of the direction the bird is shown on my quilt. That's because you always have to trace images onto Heat'n Bond in reverse. I liked this bird because it's simple and it's tail hangs down onto the flags just a little. There are lots of other bird appliques available out there if you prefer.
Arrange on your quilt. Make sure the beak is tucked under the bird's head just a little.
Iron well, making sure all the edges are sealed.
And that's it for the quilt top. I'm not going to go into the details of how to quilt and bind the quilt here, because quite frankly, there are a lot of tutorials out there by people who know a lot more about it than I do, and you probably already have your own method.
I have started to use Basting Spray to prepare my quilts for machine quilting and I LOVE IT. I don't think I'll ever go back to frame quilting or using pins. Basically, I machine quilted around the flags, line, and bird. I did all the stitching in the blue fabric with blue thread, and did a couple extra lines through really wide blue spaces.
If anyone is interested in more details about the machine quilting and binding process let me know, and maybe I'll do a tutorial for those next time I finish a quilt.