Baby Quilt, Part 1: Design to Assembly

Ever since I found I was expecting, I knew I wanted to make a few crafts for baby, one of them being a quilt. Granted, I had never made one before and have beginners sewing skills, but I still wanted to take a stab at it. It was a long process, but I’m definitely happy with the results. I’ll be sharing with your how I went about into making the quilt in the next two posts, since one would’ve been too long.

Baby Quilt details

After lots of internet browsing, I found the size I wanted (40″x48″) and came up with a design. It took a lot of variations and drawing, but I finally came up with a squares and line design, made up of 6 different patterned fabrics. To help me visualize the design, I made a mock up of it on on Photoshop.
Baby Quilt  design

Sketching out the pattern to scale made it really easy for me to calculate fabric needs and measurements. So I headed to Joann’s Fabrics and found everything I needed. It was a very successful trip.
Shopping list:

  • 1/2 yard per fabric pattern (6 total patterns for 3 total yards)
  • 1/2 yard of fabric for the border
  • 1/2 yard of fabric for the edge
  • 1.5 yards of fabric for the backside
  • batting
  • thread
  • sewing needles

Baby Quilt fabric pieces

Once home, I was ready to tackle the cut list.

  • fabric 1-3: (17) 2.5″x2.5″ squares and (4) 2.5″x24.5″ strips
  • fabric 4-6: (18) 2.5″x2.5″ squares and (3) 2.5″x24.5″ strips
  • border: (2) 3.5″x40.5″ strips and (2) 3.5″x42.5″ strips
  • edge: 4″ strips, enough to go around the perimeter of quilt, it’ll depend on the length/width of your available fabric
  • backside and batting: no cuts until front was made

Tools needed: straight edge/rulers, very sharp cutting tools (a rotary blade in my case), a cutting mat, tape measure, scissors and pencil.

Baby Quilt materials

To cut the inside design pieces, lay out the fabric and flatten as much as possible (iron if desired). Cut a straight line as close to one of the edges as possible.

Baby Quilt cut strips

From there, mark in increments of 2.5″ at different points along the length of the fabric. Guided by a straight edge, cut along those points with a rotary blade. Repeat until all your cuts of fabric are ready.

Baby Quilt cut

To assemble the design.
Using your colored sketch as a guide, start pinning together the squares of fabrics adjacent to each other. Make sure to align correctly if the pattern has an up/down pattern.







Baby Quilt pin pieces

Sew along adjoining edge with 1/4” seam allowance. Instead of doing one by one, I just kept feeding the pieces back to back to speed up the process.

Baby Quilt sew squares

Once again, match up pieces that are next to each other, pin and sew.


Baby Quilt sew duos

Keep doing this until you have all your strips made.

Baby Quilt assemble strips

Iron these so they lay as flat as possible.

Baby Quilt iron

Next, pair up, align and pin adjacent strips. Sew with a 1/4” seam allowance.

Baby Quilt pin strips together

Once again, do this until all strips are sewn together. When aligning and pinning the strips, make sure to align them where different fabrics meet to keep seams and corners as square as possible.

Baby Quilt align and square

Eventually, you will have sewn all strips together to make the front design. Iron it.

Baby Quilt insert design

The next step is to sew the border around this insert. First, sew each side.

Baby Quilt side border

Then, sew the top and bottom pieces. The front of the quilt is now complete.

Baby Quilt top and bottom border

Up to this step is the most time consuming part of the quilt, but it is also the most intricate. Just a lot of measuring, cutting, pinning and sewing. It seems never ending, but once you get to this point, the rest is a breeze.

Baby Quilt front detail

Stay tuned for the second part where I show you how I finished this quilt. Best part, I did it without a quilting machine!


Baby Quilt without quilting machine

Have a good day!

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