Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Even YOU can be crafty!

I'm always amazed at how impressed people are that I can sew in a straight line. Seriously. I only sew things that are rectangles. If it requires something other than 90 degree angles or *gasp* a PATTERN,  I have to call my mom for help. I can't even figure out how much fabric I'll need for any project, and I'm a math teacher.

So despite my shortcomings, I can whip out a baby blanket in no time flat. Here's my attempt to teach anyone how to make a simple baby blanket.

I'm actually cheating because I'm starting with a store-bought blanket. This is one Squirt got as a gift. I like it because it's a nice size, 2'x3', and it's very soft on both sides. If you don't have something to start with, go to your local fabric store (my favorite is Joann's- they have awesome coupons and selection!) and buy one yard of fabric in two different styles (that's two yards total). If you're just starting out, I would suggest a fleece or flannel option. They should be the same length, but may be different widths (check the end of the bolt if you're not sure). Pin the two sides together and sew around the outside (see, there's that rectangle I promised), leaving about a 1" seam allowance. You can then fringe the edges using scissors. Both fleece and flannel hold up nicely using this technique.

What I didn't like about this simple blanket is that it was only bound on the edges and had no quilting holding both sides together. I decided to use a very simple tie technique to remedy the problem.

First, use a fabric marker (or similar) and lay out your grid. You don't need any fancy sewing tools to do this, but I like this ruler because it's six inches across, which is how far apart I want my ties. I lined it up by starting in one corner of the blanket and marked a grid that was over six inches and up six inches from there, then continued by factors of 6 ( that's at 12, 18, 24 inches. See, you do need to know what factors are.) Then I moved over six inches. This time though, I started at 3 inches from the bottom edge and then counted by 6 (9, 15, 21). This way my grid is a little more interesting. Continue the length of your quilt.

Next I used yarn (but you could also use embroidery floss) and went down and up at each spot I marked. I find it easier to waste yarn and do as many in a row as I can reach.
*Disclaimer. The hardest part of this project is threading a needle with yarn. I used a sharp needle with the largest eye I could find. I have to use a self-threader to get it through. I'm pathetic.

Then snip between each tie.


Trim to one inch.

That's it, you're done! See, I told you it was easy. :)

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