In addition to my handyman skills, I am a relatively crafty person. I made our wedding invitations and lots of the decorations. I made my prom dress junior and senior year of high school. I knit, though not a lot currently; I tend to go through knitting phases and my last one was maybe two years ago. I like having things around the house that I can say I made besides Ikea furniture (though I’ve been known to paint and personalize that too!). Though like many crafters, I do have a problem with finishing projects. So with the impending arrival of bébé, I figured a baby quilt would be a good thing to try to make, since there is a definite deadline to deal with. I also made (and finished!) some burp cloths before starting the quilt, to get used to the sewing machine I bought a few months ago.
I remember going to a quilting event for church with my mom when I was little, but besides that, I’ve never attempted a quilt before. I think it’s the actual quilting part that scared me, since just cutting and sewing pieces of fabric together is not that hard. And it turns out once you’ve done that, you can actually send it out to be professionally quilted! I guess some people prefer the artistic aspect of putting it together rather than the longer process of actually quilting. Plus there are special machines that make it way easier to do than with a regular sewing machine.
But since it was my first, I did everything myself. I mainly followed this tutorial, though my sizes were different because of the type of fabric squares you can find in France and my inability to cut a straight line even with a rotary cutter. Also, I am terrified of the ladies at the fabric store here. I get so frustrated that I can never find the names for fabrics and I always look like an idiot. Since quilting isn’t really a big thing in France, I was worried they wouldn’t understand what I wanted, or that it doesn’t exist. So I ordered batting (“entoilage”) online, and it was thicker than I was expecting, which made quilting harder, and the end result is puffy and puckered, despite my best efforts to make things tight and smooth.
But really, I don’t care that it doesn’t look like it’s “supposed to” because OMG I made a baby quilt!! And bébé certainly won’t care that none of the seams are straight or that the binding isn’t even. All that matters is that it’s soft, it’s warm, and I made it for him.
I started in early March, and spent three or four hours at a time working on it during three different Sundays (one day cutting, one day piecing, one day cutting and sewing the border). Then last week I realized that since he could come any day now, it needed to get done, so I kicked it up a notch and spent most of this week working on it nearly every day for a few hours. The quilting part I split into two days of three hours, then there was the binding to make/pin/sew, and finishing the binding by hand took another three hours. So in theory, I could have started it a few weeks ago and still gotten it done “on time,” but I liked having it there waiting for me in my sewing area over the past few months, as a visual reminder of things to come.
So in addition to all the physical and admin stuff that’s ready to go, now he can definitely show up whenever he wants, since his quilt is finished!