Back as Front

>> Tuesday, September 20, 2011

After making a lot of quilts, I've often found that I love the pieced backs as much (or even more) than the front. I wanted a quick project on Sunday, and put together this baby quilt with the mantra "back as front," or think about the design as a quilt back. I think it works. It's one quilt I'll be contributing to Kate's 100 Quilts for Kids project.

The quilt actually started with the back, or rather my decision to piece together several fleece remnants to make this back. I'm trying to sew from my stash and part of that means using the odds and ends of backing and battings/flannel in my project. I used to use fleece as a backing frequently, and while I no long use it that much, I still think it makes for a great, warm, soft, and cuddly quilt. Perfect for a kid in Michigan.

I quilted it using a simple cross-hatch design. After basting the quilt, I placed masking tape on the quilt using the space between the big dots on the black and white dot fabric as a guide. I then stitched on both sides of the masking tape, using my presser foot's edge as a guide. I probably should have used my walking foot, but I was lazy and didn't want to take the minute to switch feet. My hands had to work a little harder, but aside from that, it was fine.

The binding came from my leftover stash of black and white fabrics from my sister's wedding quilt. I do love the black/white/red/yellow combination -- I think it works for any gender, any age. It's so versatile. I've been looking for a totally local -- as in, I can drop this off -- place to donate this, but if I can't find one, I'll be sending this to Margaret's Hope Chest. They're in Michigan, so it's somewhat local, and they do an incredible service by distributing quilts to kids whose parents are in prison. I can't do full justice to their story of origins, but suffice it to say, it's one of the most compassionate responses to violence and tragedy that I've encountered.

Shadows: A little outtake from this morning's photo shoot. 

Up on my pedestal for a moment: This quilt, which is admittedly quite simple, took about 6.5 hours from start to finish. That's barely an hour a day if spread over a week. So grab some strips of fabrics and make a quilt. Kate's even offering some incentives for quilts made over the next month. If you've got access to some fabric and a sewing machine, you can do it. There will be a link-up on Kate's blog, next week, September 28-30, as well as October 12-14.


Mary Anne September 20, 2011 at 8:24 PM  

Very nice and very thoughtful! I have some big pieces of chenille that would work great for this purpose...I think I've just decided on my next project (or two)!

Sarah Craig September 20, 2011 at 8:42 PM  

Great quilt! We love to use fleece for the backing for baby quilts that we make for our quilt ministry - it makes the quilts warm, but still flexible enough to fit in a car seat without being bulky (no batting). We also like to buy it at Joann's when they have it on half-price - we hit the remnant bins and get the bolt ends for half of half price! What a steal!!

Karissa September 22, 2011 at 4:07 PM  

What a great and generous gift--of time, materials, warmth, and art! Inspiring, to be sure!

Nicole @ Patchwork Duck Designs September 23, 2011 at 12:36 PM  

I love the quilt and the unusual but fabulous color combinations. Margaret's Hope Chest is a great organization, and I hope a lucky kid appreciates this quilt!

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