Monday, April 13, 2015

It was totally on trend when you were born... (Chevron baby quilt pattern)

Last fall I got some of the most exciting news a girl could ask for. My sister is having a baby. Of course, I can't wait to be an aunt to a little baby boy in May, but in the meantime, from 2000 miles away, I immediately got started on baby crafts. After all, babies are the best people to craft for.

I spent a number of hours on Pinterest looking at baby quilts and then dug through my old stash of quilt patterns, but, of course, couldn't find anything that I really liked or thought my sister would like. She's hip, she's stylish, she lives in Marin. I couldn't very well make her a boring pastel nine-patch circa 1993. So, I showed up to craft night with my friends one Thursday with a pad of quad-rule and my TI 83 plus and set to work designing my own quilt, something that would say: My baby is totally on trend right now. 

After a half hour of sketching I gave up and admitted that we all know what it on trend right now: Chevrons. True, chevrons will probably be "out" by 2020 and people will look at them and say, "Chevrons, that is so twenty-teens." As my friends pointed out, though, baby quilts only have to be on trend for about 3 years. Then, they can just stand as a testament to the era in which we were born. So, chevrons it is. 

I drew up a pattern that was simplistic and clean and 40" by 50" and calculated my yardage. 
I got to the fabric store, list in hand and reminding myself that my sister told me she was going "traditional vintage boy"--- light gray blue, navy, and dark red. I tried to steer myself to those colors, really I did. But I know my sister. She doesn't decorate with dark red. She decorates with turquoise. The walls of her 5th grade bedroom were turquoise. Gender be damned, I wandered the store for an hour picking out fabrics that reminded me of her and trollied them to the cutting table. 

"Can I make a quilt for a baby boy out of these?" I asked the girl behind the counter. 
She saw the desperation on my face. I have been this employee. The answer is yes. The answer is always yes. "Sure, yeah. I think they're cute." With the blessing of the JoAnns employee (because this was important to me) I went home to start on the quilt.

Pattern
Supplies
1/3 yard of each of 5 different 45" fabrics
1 yard of 45" white fabric
Either 1.5 yards of 45" or 1.25 yards of 54" fabric for backing
Batting (if desired)

Cut
White: Cut six 5.5" strips the width of the fabric (apx 44")
Cut each strip into seven 5.5" squares you'll need (40 in total)
Cut each square on the diagonal to create 80 triangles. 

Each color: Cut two 5.5" strips the width of the fabric. 
From strips cut a total of eight 5.5" squares. 
Cut each square in half on the diagonal to create 16 triangles. 

Piece
Using a 1/4" seam allowance throughout sew one colored triangle to one white triangle to create a square. Repeat with all triangles (create 80 squares in total). Press seams.

Using the pattern as a guide, sew 4 color-matched squares together with 1/4" seams to create a chevron. Repeat with all squares until you have 20 10.5" by 10.5" blocks. Press seams. 
Sew 4 like-colored blocks into a strip. Repeat to create 5 rows. Sew 5 rows together to create quilt top. Press seams. 

Quilt and Bind
"Stitch in the ditch" along the edge of each chevron (i.e., at the color changes). Back and bind as you like. 




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