Chances are, if you are a friend, neighbor or relative who has had a baby, I have made a baby quilt for you. This might come as a surprise to some of you friends, neighbors, and/or relatives who've had babies, since not everyone has actually receivedsaid baby quilts. Sometimes the quilts get made only in my head, which is full of good intentions. Sometimes they are "made" in the sense that I buy the fabric for them. (Such as Kayci's twoyoungest daughters and Lindsay's youngest son.) Occasionally they get partly made, which is the case with Britt's daughter, who is closing in on two years old. I made the quilt top but then couldn't figure out how to quilt it, so I put it away until inspiration struck. Which it still hasn't. Every once in awhile, I'll actually finish the quilt, put it in a cute gift bag, and then manage to not take the gift over until it's far too late. It would be weird to show up with a baby quilt for an eight-month old, wouldn't it?
Sometimes I manage to conceptualize, shop for, sew, quilt, bind andgive the baby quilts I make. I even keep baby-quilt-laundering supplies (a package of fragrance-free dryer sheets and a bottle of Dreft which I never sniff just to be reminded of how baby laundry smells) on hand for my successes. I think I'm most successful when I keep the project simple. And as I have four new babies coming up soon (my sister-in-law Melissa's and then one each for my nieces Lindsay, Brittany, and Jacqui) I'm going to be doing a bit of simple sewing. So yesterday I sat down and figured out the dimensions and yardage for a simple rag baby quilt. And then I executed:
Here you have attempt #1 at a simple, made-in-a-few-hours baby quilt. It's not exactly what I intended, because that jungle-animal print came in a strip pattern already, so it messed up my measurements. (When I make another one with my original dimensions, I'll write up a tutorial, just so I can remember exactly how to do it.) I made this one for a friend at work, whose baby shower is today. It didn't turn out just like I had hoped—it's wider than it is long—but I still think it's cute.
Whenever I am making a baby quilt, even a quick one, I'll have a moment when I'm besieged with doubt. Is this a dumb gift? Will it be sturdy or embarrassingly fragile? Are the colors and patterns OK? Would the mom rather receive something practical, like clothes or diapers or bottles? I'm not sure. Part of the give-a-quilt motivation is simply that I enjoy making them, so in that sense I'm not even doing it for them.
So, that's my question to you. If you've received a baby quilt as a gift (from me or someone else), was it a good gift? Or would a practical something be better?