That’s how I feel today, because I can finally reveal a secret project I’ve been working on. Remember when I shared this teaser pic a few months back?
Well, that stack of fat quarters has come a long way…
I made this baby quilt for my friend Anna who is due any day now, and I am so happy I can finally tell you all about it because it got delivered to her house in the mail today and is sitting pretty on baby Lila’s crib. *UPDATE*: I came up with a name for the quilt! It’s “See Jane Stack”= (Nicey Jane fabric + Stacked Coin pattern + “See Jane Run” reference).
I’m pretty proud of this one because it’s the first quilt I’ve made 100% on my own. My mom has had a hand in all the other quilts I’ve made, but this one was all Mindy, start to finish.
I was super excited when I decided to make this quilt for Anna’s baby because baby quilts are just the right size: not too big that they get boring, and not too small to whip through too quickly. My first dilemma was picking out fabrics. Oh the hours I spent on Etsy browsing through fabrics! At first I had a completely different color scheme picked out- buttery yellow, bold red, aqua and gray. I still might use that scheme for another quilt, but after Anna revealed some pics of her nursery on her blog- specifically using the word “pastels” and “vintage-y” I ditched the original plan and made a beeline for Heather Bailey’s Nicey Jane line. At first I only bought the blue/green colors, but after laying some of the fabrics out I decided I needed more contrast in colors, so I purchased a fat quarter of the whole line. Blue, green, pink, orange and yellow florals with a really vintage-inspired look.
Then I had to choose my pattern. I’d been eying some stacked coin quilts and patterns on Etsy and decided there couldn’t possibly be an easier quilt to make- no points/corners to line up! Plus, I liked how modern the pattern looked. So I quickly cut out some 9″ wide coins in varying lengths.
Next came the really fun part- laying the fabrics out and arranging them! I have to admit- one of my favorite things to do is order things by color, so I spent some time just having fun grouping these cute little coins.
I had to decided if there was going to be any pattern to my stacks, so at first I tried out alternating columns of warm/cool fabrics.
That looked okay, but when I just laid out the coins in a random order, I liked that better. So I whipped up four columns.
They came together really quickly. I just guesstimated the length of the columns since I was using coins of all different lengths. So I also liked that this way of doing it eliminated some quilt math.
Then I added in some strips of Kona Ash and presto! I had a quilt top! I like that I chose not to add any gray on the top or bottom- that way the columns stand out more without the block-ish look capping them would have created.
The top ended up just a little bit wider than a standard WOF, so I decided to piece the back. Again, I went with simple straight lines, this time using the strips like bricks. Simple and sweet.
After I sandwiched the quilt top, batting and backing I quilted the whole thing with more straight lines. It was my first time quilting on my own so I wanted to do something easy. Well, this was about as easy as you could get, but I also really liked the look. Each line is about 1/2″ apart. I didn’t mark them, but used my presser foot and needle position as guides, so it came out with a charmingly home-done look.
Finally I took some leftover coins and sewed them together to make a pieced binding. As soon as I was done I ran outside to take a bunch of pictures because I was 100% in love with how it had turned out!
Well, I jumped the gun because the quilt got EVEN BETTER after I washed it and it got that crinkly look.
Here are the things I love about this quilt:
1) 100% made by me! I mathed-out the pattern myself, pieced it, and quilted the thang like one giddy little girl.
2) The modern-yet-homemade look. The fabric is soft and floral, the lines are clean without being store-bought straight. The crinkles are perfect.
3) Using gray instead of white solid. Anna’s nursery walls are gray, so that was the inspiration.
4) How insanely easy and fun it was to put together.
5) How “Mindy” it turned out while at the same time being something I think Anna would really like. I really like her taste in nearly everything, so I was hoping this time it would work backwards.
6) That even though I LOVE this quilt I had no regrets letting it go because I knew it was going to a great home. Anna and her husband Ryan are great people, I know they’ll be great parents and it’s inevitable their baby Lila will be exceedingly and subsequently great as well. Congratulations to these two- Lila’s already got a crowd of adoring fans awaiting her (fashionably late) arrival.
I’ve been on pins and needles waiting for the quilt to arrive at Anna’s house. Isn’t giving a great gift one of the best feelings? Especially after you’ve kept it secret from someone you are bursting to share it with!
So that’s one thing that’s been keeping me busy lately. I’ve also made some progress on the purple quilt, which I hope to post on soon, along with a brag-post about the new-to-me sewing machine my mom generously handed down to me. And, I promise to post on the new job, too. I’m just waiting for it to be official before publishing a big public post. Until then, I’m off to spend Easter weekend with my family in IL. We’re Polish, so it’s going to be epic. Bigger than Christmas. We’re talking homemade horseradish, lamb cakes, fresh polish sausage and leg of lamb. When I get back home I’m going to need to get serious about this mini-marathon training again, and not just so I can finish it- I’m gonna have some Easter weight to shed!