This year, I started planning what I was going to do for the kids for Christmas early – like at least July early. I had a couple Layer Cakes that I wanted to use for quilts, and I had a pattern I wanted to use for another quilt – I just had to pick out the fabric for it. So each of the three kids that still live in the house with us each got a quilt for Christmas (Sorry, Emma, doesn’t growing up suck?).
I made Harley’s quilt top first because I already had the pattern, and then I fell in love with the backing fabric I found at JoAnn’s when I was in Boise over the summer.
Harley is very down-to-earth, happy, and laid back, so I wanted to make her quilt fit her personality. She is very black and white without a lot of gray area, so I really liked the sharp contrasts of the color-blocking and sashing in this quilt. I had to add the butterfly blocks for a little bit of whimsy, though.
This polk-a-dot backing is the fabric I found first, and then I found the other fabrics to coordinate with it. I just love the little offset circles on white and gray.
I did my own quilting (probably will never do it again), and I don’t hate it, but my machine just doesn’t have a big-enough arm hole for all the bulky rolled-up fabric to fit through. Any quilts I make in the future will have longarm quilting budgeted into their expense.
If you live in Oregon, Idaho, or Washington, it is unlikely you haven’t heard of Dutch Brothers Coffee. All the kids love their drinks, so I included a gift card with their quilts.
This quilt is the first time I used the quick sew method for making Half Square Triangles, and it is AMAZING! I worked really hard to make sure all my blocks remained square and that the points matched up.
I used a solid navy colored sheet to back Terrance’s quilt, and I also quilted this one myself. This time, I followed the diagonal lines (NEVER AGAIN) one direction. I just don’t have the patience to bundle all the excess fabric up to quilt efficiently.
As with Harley’s quilt, though, I am really happy with the way it turned out, and Terrance liking it is just the cherry on top!
I used the Brickyard Pattern by Amy Smart of Diary of a Quilter to make Reagan’s quilt, and I used the Pie Making Day Patty Cake collection for the fabric. I love the organized, random offset pattern of this quilt, and the colors of the fabric totally fit Miss Reagan’s personality! She is bright, cheerful, impish, energetic, and bubbly!
I didn’t want to overwhelm the colors and patterns of the main fabrics, so I used solid white for the sashing and a solid turquoise for the backing. I used strips of the same backing material to bind it with, as well.
Reagan’s quilt has the simplest quilting pattern. I simply sewed right down the center of each of the vertical sashing pieces.
One thing I did learn (other than I don’t want to use my machine for quilting anymore) is how to make perfect mitred corners when attaching the binding, and they were amazingly easy!
I used my machine to bind the quilts because even though I started in the summer, I was running up against a time crunch, and if I’m being completely honest, I HATE HATE HATE hand sewing. If hand-sewing binding was a requirement, either the quilts would not get made, or I would work the price of paying someone else to do it into the cost of the quilt, as well.
In the rush to get it all done, I even remembered to attach my labels to the quilts, though I messed up on Terrance’s and put it on the front instead of the back. I was going to fix it for him, but he said he didn’t mind it.
I wish I would have taken more pictures of the processes of making Harley’s and Terrance’s quilts, but I didn’t think to, dang it. They have all slept with snuggled under, and hung out with their quilts since Christmas, so I the gifts were definitely a success. Terrance hasn’t held still long enough since Christmas for me to get a picture of him with his quilt yet.
I am beyond thrilled that the kids love their quilts. I may have to make one for myself now!
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