Some really good friends of ours are having a baby. These folks are probably our best couple friends. I can’t even hold it against them that they got pregnant on the first try. First month off of birth control. I still think that’s just damn magical.
Anyway, I’ve been working like a fiend getting a baby shower together for them. I’m throwing it in conjunction with Chief’s ex-girlfriend and another friend. It’s weird, but fine. I’ve been “friends” with her for a long time and the other friend is delightful. But what I’ve been really excited about is making things for their baby. I have four things I am making
1. Faux Chenille Blanket
2. Pug Stuffed Doll
3. Burp Cloth Set
4. Taggie Blanket
The Faux Chenille Blanket was going to be the most time consuming, so I tackled it first and I’ve finally finished it and I am in love. I’m going to make one for Charlie (though I really need to start on her easter dress first).
Anyway, I thought you guys might like some of the pictures of the blanket and the process. It’s really time consuming and at times monotonous, but I think it’s really worth it.
The parts that I didn’t take pictures of are the boring parts. Basically, you get a pretty piece of cotton. I went with 1.25 yards of a navy blue with a white pattern, because those were the colors my friends are going with for their baby boy. Then I got 1.25 yards of a very light grey flannel, a navy flannel, and a white flannel.
Then you want to lay them all out on top of each other with the right side of the cotton facing the floor and the flannel on the wrong side. I sandwiched my blue flannel in between the two lighter colors because I was afraid when it was all said and done you would just see a blob of white instead of the white and grey since they were so similar.
Then you take a basting spray and lightly lift back the fabric and spray it. I do this in sections so you’re not trying to resmooth everything perfectly all from the starting point again. When you’re done you should have a big piece of thick, glued together fabric.
Then the fun begins.
What you do is sew .5 inch seams down the bias starting in the center. Here is where you should be smarter than me-use your quilting guide that you have with your walking foot (if you don’t have a walking foot you absolutely have to have one for this). I was spending a lot of time sewing a row, marking a row, sewing a row, marking a row. Just mark the first row and then use your quilting guide after that. I didn’t figure this out until I was literally halfway done with the rows. It was exhausting.
There are some lovely imperfect rows. Sew with your pretty fabric facing up because it’s the side that will matter. You won’t see this when it’s all said and done.
Then, when you have sewed your rows ALL THE WAY ACROSS THE FABRIC (this took me about five hours over the course of two afternoons, and I wasn’t exactly going slow either…), then the fun begins.
First, carefully trim your edges. In all likelihood your fabric has shifted because how could it not have? Just trim it all even again. Then, take your chenille cutter and start slicing down the flannel. DON’T SLICE THROUGH THE COTTON. That would be terrible:
You could do this without a chenille cutter, but gosh it would be pretty miserable. I started the rows with scissors but then the chenille cutter made quick work of the cutting process. You can see where my flannel got a little folded over in spots while sewing-that doesn’t matter as long as the cotton stayed nice and flat. You won’t be able to tell at the end.
Ok, got your rows all cut? Excellent.
The next part is up to you, but I like rounded corners. Once again I didn’t take a picture, but basically take a cereal bowl, put it up to the corner, and take your rotary and cut the corner off. Badabing.
Then you take your bias tape and bind the crap out of that thing. I tried to pin the bias tape but the whole project was so thick it was just unruly, so I just went slowly and stretched the bias tape as I went.
Then, here is the most maddening part. You have to wash it to see the final product. Wash and dry that puppy. Then literally run to the dryer as soon as it’s done to see your blanket!
Look at those beautiful, cuddly (and now I see blurry), rows of flannel. I love the way the blue comes through the layers of white and grey. I’m just in love with the whole project honestly, but I’m only making them for people I reeeeaaaaallllly like lol. Lots of work ,but worth it, and for our friends it was really a labor of love.
Anyway, happy Saturday and happy sewing bleeps!