After finding so much inspiration from Jenny Doan at Missouri Star Quilt Co. I decided that I HAD to make a quilt. I’ve made a couple before but I had really no idea what I was doing. The first one I made was for my dad, it was about a full size quilt, made out of his father’s shirts after he passed away. My dad loved it. Everyone did. It was special, but I wish I could redo it because now that I know what I am doing, it would be so much easier and look SO MUCH better. I didn’t actually quilt that quilt….ha! I was totes a newbie. Don’t judge. I also don’t have a picture of that one easily accessible, so I’ll have to see if I can have my parents send me one!

The second quilt I also did for my dad because he loves quilts…he’s got a weird obsession with them! I don’t know why! Anyway, he begged me for one for Christmas this past year and I told him NO about 100 times because they’re so much work. BUT Eliott’s sweet Grammie gave me a quilt top that was already completed and told me I could do with it what I wanted. So part of the project was already finished! Woo hoo! What I learned between the first quilt and the second quilt…was that it needed, well….quilted. SO I set out to Walmart and got myself some quilting pins. They’re basically like a safety pin only they’re bigger and curved. You use them to pin your backing, batting, and quilt top all together so you can quilt the whole blanket. Sounds easy enough right?! HAHAHAHA!! I was in tears over the silly blanket. It was so much harder than I thought it would be. The quilt was puckering ALL kinds, and by the time I was done….it really didn’t look too great.

It’s kind of hard to tell, but that’s as flat as it would lay. Sad story.

See all those puckers?! =(  
I looked as awful as the puckers on the quilt! HAHA!

I knew  my dad would love the blanket either way, BUT I wasn’t going to give it to him like that. I felt so defeated. So I dreamt about the blanket for about 2 weeks. I thought about all the things I could have done differently…. -You should have started quilting in the middle instead of the end… -You should have chose a different backing, that one was too slippery -You could have used more pins and it would have held together better -You could have skipped quilting…he wouldn’t have cared But dreaming about things I COULD have done was not solving my problem…so I started thinking of ways I could fix the silly thing. I’ll add a different backing, I decided. I chose a fleece-like material for the back and decided that although the quilting wouldn’t show on the back, it was the best way to make this quilt look good. So, I attached the new back and wrapped the back around the sides, it made the blanket look complete and not so….puckery. (Yes, I’m aware thats not a word!) My dad loved the blanket…Christmas was a success.


Here’s the front after it was done! not so bad!


And the whole back was just fleece like this, I added the tag for my dad because he has this huge thing with making sure people know who handmade gifts are from and when they received it. So i made it  giant just for him! =)

So take a step forward in time and I found this lady, Jenny Doan, on youtube with all these AWESOME quilting tutorials. I’ve talked about her before. She’s so cool. I would totally love to meet her in person. So I had a new revived outlook on quilting. I mean the lady makes it look incredibly simple. But after watching about a bajillion of her videos I knew I needed more tools!! So I gathered some monies and I ordered some basting spray (it replaces those AWFUL quilting pins!!) a walking foot, a quilting foot, and a new and improved ruler. And I decided I would make my nephew (who isn’t born yet) a totally awesome baby quilt. I had made a blanket for his sister before she was born, so I suppose it’s a tradition…? Anyway. I found some charm packs. Charm packs were another thing I had never heard of until Jenny Doan came into my life. They’re precut quilt squares…they come in all sizes and then you don’t have to cut out a million squares by yourself. Perfect? I’ll answer that for you. YES! I printed off the pictures of the pattern squares and designed my quilt on paper first, that way I could see how I wanted it to look before I started piecing. Then the sewing began! Woo hoo! Row by row, column by column…I had the whole quilt top finished! It was so awesome, you guys. I was so proud. I chose minky for the back of my quilt because I wanted it to be warm and cozy and super soft! And minky….is SUPER soft. I used basting spray and attached my backing to my quilt top…no pins necessary, it all stuck together like a charm (no pun intended!). I quilted my little heart out. I added binding and finished my quilt and then I stared at it for about 20 minutes. “Holy cow. I’m amazing. I just did this. All.By.MY.SELF!!!!” I face timed my mom so I could impress her too. She was as equally as impressed as myself. Go me! I literally walked to my sewing room a 100 times after I made it just to admire my work. I’m lame like that. But so proud. I couldn’t help it. I was going to save the gift and give it to my sister at her shower but I COULD NOT WAIT. Neither could she…she knew she had a surprise coming, she just didn’t know what! Haha! She loved it. I loved it. My mom loved it. Everybody loved it. I’m bragging a bit…but I think it’s my favorite project I’ve ever completed.

    

And now….I’m no longer scared of quilts. Thanks Jenny Doan! If I can do it. YOU CAN DO IT! Seriously. It’s not as hard as it looks….PLUS Jenny Doan will be there for you…through a screen though, of course. 😉

Happy Quilting
-Mandee

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