One of the things I love most about working with fabric is all of the endless colors, patterns, and possibilities. Since I only started sewing a couple years ago I am definitely new to the designer fabric world. There have been a few times that I have come across fabric lines that were printed and sold a few year ago before I even knew they existed that I have been so bummed I missed out on! (Mainly the Good Folks line by AMH- but... luckily I have gotten my hands 9 of the prints from that collection that were still lying around a quilt shop off the beaten path).
One of the fabric designers that I have fallen in love with is Heather Ross... I love all of her past fabric lines that are oh so cute and sadly out of print and not available to me now. So when I saw she had a new line coming out, and printed on quilting cottons no less, I pre-ordered a fat quarter bundle and felt so happy to finally be in on the Heather Ross action!
As you can see... this line is so bright and happy! I love it. The darling strawberries are my favorite! (These knit leggings I made my daughter are so darling that I may or may not have contemplated making some for myself... ;)
When I cut into my bundle of Briar Rose to make a baby quilt for my friends baby on the way, I was tossing up ideas for what I wanted to back the quilt with. I have mixed feelings on quilts for tiny babies. I really love blankets that will swaddle and snuggle my babies and quilts can be kinda stiff until you really work them in and soften them up a bit. (I have always used my girl's baby quilts as more of a play mat than a "blanket".)
While in the midst of contemplating quilt backing, this gorgeous Briar Rose knit showed up on my doorstep from The Fabric Fairy... Lightbulb moment!
My very favorite baby blankets that I have used on both of my babies have been blankets made with knit fabric. So I thought... "I wonder if it would work to use this knit as backing for this baby quilt?"
IT WORKED! I am so happy with the result. The drape on the quilt is perfect. Not stiff at all and totally ready to swaddle a brand new baby! I did straight vertical lines about 3 1/2 inches apart to quilt it. It is very minimal, but since I was going for a "not stiff" quilt it worked great. It has such a great feel to it.
I went totally overboard when basting my quilt and used TONS of pins to make sure that this knit wouldn't shift or bunch up while I quilted... It paid off! So if you do use knit as your backing be sure to pre wash your knit fabric, pin like crazy when basting, and use a walking foot while quilting to insure that you have a good experience like I did! :)
One thing that I have tried to do when gifting quilts to my friends, is make a matching quilt with the scraps for big sis or big brother to use for their doll or stuffed animal. My friend has a daughter that is becoming a big sis for the first time so I knew that a mini quilt for her doll would be perfect. Now she can take care of "her baby" just like mommy takes care of the new baby.
It turned into a wonky quilt unintentionally... I forgot to use my walking foot when I started quilting it and once I realized my mistake- it was too late to do anything about the shifting without picking out all of the stitches I had done... But I figure our little friend probably wouldn't mind a little wonkiness! ;)
I backed it in the PERFECT quilt backing for a little princess... Fair Maidens...The colors matched perfectly and I love how the frogs in briar rose mixed with the princesses kissing the frogs on the back made for a "Princess and the Frog" dolly quilt.
Perfect baby gift for mommy and big sis!
Happy Sewing! xoxo, Ashley