Saturday, April 9, 2022

Another Week, Another "Everything in the World" Baby Quilt!

I have a theory that Covid and/or the vaccine got a lot of people pregnant - I can hardly keep up with the baby onslaught! The last two posts showed some of my recent baby quilts, and here's the front of my newest:

Long before "gender-fluid" was a common phrase, I debated with myself about how girly or (why isn't boyly a word?) to make a baby quilt when the biologial sex was known.

And nowadays, of course, I'm even more conscious of stereotyping. There's a whole lot more girly fabric in the quilt world, than the boyish kind, and I'd like to use it! My solution for this particular quilt - knowing the baby is a biological girl - was to make the front as gender-balanced as I could. 

And then I threw a Kaffe Fasset pink party on the back! (Kaffe's a guy, so that balances it out.)

The front is built from 4" blocks, 12 across by 16 high - which adds up to a staggering 192 different fabrics. How do you acquire 192 fabrics? See the end of this post. How do you organize and sew them? I always start by creating thematically-linked 9-patches.

For example, there's a "people" block on the left, and a nature block on the right.

Can you see RGB and Harry Potter? There are also some child Olympians and an Egyptian princess. The nature includes a cactus, pansies, and autumn leaves. 

Here's part of two 9-patches with some of my favorite creature fabrics. (I don't happen to own any Mickey Mouse fabric, but I do own Minnie).

Next, below, a sports-and-games block, plus the 2nd vertical column on the left, which is all food (and not in 9-patch form).  I scored that woman golfer fabric on the upper right 200 years ago, at Michael Levine's in downtown Los Angeles. The bicycle fabric was bought in the last couple of weeks from Remainders in Pasadena CA, a wonderful arts-and-crafts community upcycling shop. The row across the bottom shows part of the music-themed 9-patch.
And speaking of games, in the outer rounds, I played completely different games. The second horizontal row across is all black-and-white images. I am on a personal mission to teach babies about typewriters. This one looks like the one my Dad used. 
To the right of the typewriter, there are keyboard letters (to help the kid figure it out), and punctuation next to that. On the typewriter's left, there's an alphabet block, and  then hands spelling out sign language letters. 
In the outermost border round, mostly solid color blocks alternate with additional black-and-white prints. 

If you want to make a quilt like this, with just 4" blocks, it's extremely simple. 

1. Spend 30 years as a fabriholic with a driver's license. Ideally some of those years should be pre-1998, before you could order fabric online, when you had to go to every quilt shop you could whenever possible, and buy virtually everything, because you knew you would never see that fabric again.

2. When you're creatively blocked or need a little exercise, cut all your family-friendly fabrics (and solid colors, and black-and-white fabrics) into 4" squares. Let these pile up.

3. When anyone declares a pregnancy, sew your squares together into 9-patches, and then join those into a quilt.

So easy! (Except maybe the time travel!)