Tuesday, February 22, 2011

easy argyle baby quilt {tutorial}

I don't know what got into me, but last week I actually started and FINISHED two baby quilts! I know--I feel pretty accomplished. It could be that they were both super easy. But still! How awesome is that? Here's the first one, an argyle pattern on corduroy.

And the other was a simple strip quilt, made out of the leftovers from this quilt. It took me only a few minutes to sew the strips together, and less than an hour to quilt it in straight lines, which was done by sewing a line about 1/2" on either side of each seam. Easy! The binding was what took the longest!

So back to the argyle quilt. You're going to die when you hear how easy it was. I stole the idea from a friend who made one for my sister-in-law. I've known Laurie over 20 years (okay, that makes me feel old!), and I wouldn't exactly call her a craftster. But when she does decide to make something, watch out! She is freakin' amazing! Her quilt had 6 diamonds, but I was feeling lazy, so you get the three diamond version. Thanks for the inspiration, Larry! :)

Easy Argyle Baby Quilt Tutorial


*42" x 42" piece of fabric for top (Laurie and I used a light-weight corduroy)
*1/3 yard fabric for binding
*1/2 yard fabric for one diamond and border strips (I had leftover fabric)
*1/3 yard (or less) for two diamonds
*42" x 42" piece of quilt batting (I use Warm & Natural)
*44" x 44" fabric for backing (I used minky with a cute star pattern)
*1.5 yards iron-on adhesive (I like Heat n' Bond Sewable weight)
*Approx. 4.5 yards ric rac in coordinating colors (I used about 3 yards blue and 1.5 yard brown)
*Sewing machine and matching thread (I recommend a walking foot for the quilting if you have one)
*Cutting mat and rotary cutter

What makes this quilt so easy is that you use all raw edges. I call it quick and dirty quilting. Let's get started.

1. Wash all your fabrics. As I rule, I NEVER wash my fabrics before quilting because I like the crinkly effect that happens when the fabric shrinks the first time you wash the quilt. But since I was working with corduroy (a first for me), and I wasn't really going for a crinkly look, I decided I better wash it. I'm glad I did.

2. Cut your quilt top to 41" x 41" (mine shrunk to about that size, so I just trimmed the edges).

3. Time to cut your diamonds. I wanted mine to be 22" tall and 12" wide, but you can use this method to make any size diamonds.

Cut a piece of fabric 22" x 12".

Fold in half lengthwise.

Then fold it in half the other way.

Lay a quilting ruler on top, with the side going from one corner to the other along the raw edge.

Cut along this edge.

Unfold it and you have a perfect diamond in the exact height and width you need! Repeat for other two diamonds.

4. Cut a piece of iron-on fabric adhesive about 1/2" around smaller than your diamond. I just eyeballed it. You just want to be sure to leave the edges alone so they'll fray when you wash them.

Iron it to the back of each diamond according to the manufacturer's instructions. The adhesive will disappear after you wash it a few times.

Peel off the paper backing and position on your quilt top. I made sure they were centered by measuring from all four sides.

Iron in place according to manufacturer's instructions.


5. Cut a border strip 5" x 41" for the top and bottom edges. I accidentally cut mine 4" wide, so I positioned them an inch from the edge, but you're smarter than me, so cut them to the right width and position them right on the edges.

6. Now you're going to make your quilt sandwich. Lay your backing out on the floor and smooth out any wrinkles. You can tape it to the carpet with masking tape if you want to keep it in place. Then add your batting on top of that and smooth out. Then comes your quilt top. Smooth. Then use safety pins (I prefer the slightly bent quilting safety pins) to secure all three layers together.

7. Now you're going to sew the pieces on and quilt all in the same step! Start by sewing around each diamond, backstitching at beginning and end. Use about a 1/4" seam allowance (so you'll have something left to fray!).

8. Do the same for the borders, sewing along each long edge.

9. For the cute argyle X's, you'll sew on two strips of ric rac, about 22" long. First pin on one half of each X diagonally across each diamond. Sew in place, backstitching at beginning and end.

Then pin on other half of X on the opposite side to create the X and sew in place. The ends of my ric rac met the other piece to create more diamonds.

10. Trim all excess fabric/batting off the edges. For the binding, cut your binding fabric into 4 strips, 41.5" x 3" (I cut them a little long just in case--you'll trim later). Fold each strip in half lengthwise and iron.

11. To attach the binding, start with just one piece. Fold one strip over one end, making sure edge of quilt is flush with inside fold.

Pin in place through all layers. Sew along raw edge with a 1/4" allowance. Trim ends if needed.

12. Pin another strip on, overlapping the two ends. Now you're going to make your corner.

Fold the end of the pinned strip in, making a right angle.

Tuck the triangle under to form a mitered corner.

Pin in place.

Turn over and repeat on the back. Then sew down the angle, starting at the outside edge of the blanket, and turn to sew down the long edge of the binding. Repeat for remaining binding strips and corners.

13. Your quilt is almost done!

The last step is to wash and dry it. This will fray all the raw edges you left and make it look even cuter!

And look how cool the back looks with the argyle quilting pattern! This quilt is a little heavier and warmer than a cotton quilt. Perfect for winter babies!

Okay, one more picture. This one is for the grandmas--they need to see these little crazies once in a while!

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33 Responses to “easy argyle baby quilt {tutorial}”

A.Vang said...

I love it! I really want to make one for my sister her baby is due in April! Thank you for the great tutorial!

meemsnyc said...

What an absolute cute idea!!

Createology said...

This quilt is brilliant. I love how you made it and the fabrics you have used. Thank you for sharing your techniques. Love it! Happy stitching...

Tai Bender said...

I LOVE it! The tutorial is great and I love the simplicity. I have a soft spot for raw, frayed edges. Great job!

Unknown said...

Great job, Mandy! Amazing. I'm going to have to make one of these for my new little boy (by June). I am highlighting this at somedaycrafts.blogspot.com

beetree said...

Absolutely wonderful quilts! I love them both, and actually am in the planning stages of making my own strip quilt for the couch. :) I love the fabric on both- adorable!

Stephanie G. said...

Thank God you posted about binding. I just made my first quilt (a doll quilt...gotta start small) and I had no freakin' idea how to bind it. All the other internet tutorials had me confused and crying. I get it now! THANK YOU!!!

Stephanie :)

Michelle J. said...

I love that quilt! I imagined it was about the size of a lap quilt until I saw the last picture, and realized it's the perfect size. I am seriously loving everything about this quilt (and the other one for that matter) from the fabrics you used to the ease of binding it. Thanks for sharing the tutorial.

KanataNewf said...

Love the argyle quilt. Simply beautiful

Beth said...

This is AMAZING!! Our family is rich in boys and after a while, well, we just end up getting the exact same thing over and over, this will help change it up, and it's super cute, without any ruffles!!

Gina said...

what a fantastic quilt! I'm not a quilter but you make it look so easy! Maybe I should try it for my nephew!

Shantaie said...

both are fantastic! thanks for the great tips on making the argyle pattern!

Lisa said...

Super cute!

ificould said...

LOVE LOVE LOVE the argyle quilt (well, both quilts actually). Posted a link: http://ificould-ificould.blogspot.com/2011/02/argyle-baby-quilt.html

Thanks for sharing!!!
Missy & Kimi

Becky J. said...

i love it!! simple and the raw edge applique while quilting it is perfect to make up quick. thanks for sharing the tutorial!

Tiffany said...

I saw your feature on Someday Crafts. This baby quilt is beautiful, and thank you for the great tutorial, I may have to make something like this for my soon to be here nephew!

Shana Putnam said...

I am in love with this! Gorgeous!

Pamela said...

This is darling! I even have a new nephew coming soon to use this idea on. Thanks for the easy tutorial!

Sue said...

Lovely clear tutorial. makes me want to dig out some fabric and make one. Unfortunatley i have about a squillion other projects to finish first!

Unknown said...

I love this! You make argyle look so easy that I want to try it out! I especially love that you used ric rac. That stuff is amazing! I always admire it, but I've never actually used it; my mom always used to tell me growing up "It's cute, but It'll cost ya!" I suppose I should try it out, and now I have the excuse to!

PS - I have had so much traffic from your site in the past day! You've moved up to the 3rd biggest source of traffic in the "stats" bar. Is it nerdy that I check that so often? I'll have to thank Shelley for the linky love...and thanks for posting it!

Erica {B is for Boy} said...

I love, love, love this quilt! The colors you chose are just perfect! I am definately going to have to make a couple! Thanks for the tutorial :)

Melynie said...

Both of your quilts turned out just darling!!! Just like you!!! Seriously cute stuff.

Marianne said...

I have just asked my friend who had a baby boy last May if she had any boy fabrics she didn't get to use then and if she did if I could have it just so I can make a few boy projects. This is on my list. I love it.
Thank you for sharing.

LuckyRedHen said...

GREAT idea for a boy quilt! Thanks :)

Anonymous said...

Great tutorial! Thank you. My nephew and his wife are expecting a son and I think I'll make this for them. Thank you again


Amy Morris said...

I actually MADE this yesterday from gray corduroy and a bevy of pink fabric! A very fast project. Only issue I had was that I had to make my diamonds smaller--you can't get 18x22 diamonds out of 1/3 yard (12") of fabric. I made mine 12x18 instead. Folks should buy at least 1/2 yard of fabric if they want the 18x22 diamonds. Great project!!

Stephanie said...

I love this quilt, and am in the process of making one, but the measurements on the diamonds don't work. The diamonds on this pattern, if cut to 22x18, do not fit on a 41" square top. 18" wide x 3 diamonds is 54". If I look at the images on the cutting mat, it appears that you cut the diamonds at 22x12. Thanks for the tutorial.

Little Birdie Secrets said...

Oops! Thanks, Stephanie, for pointing out a typo! There was an incorrect measurement listed for the diamonds. It read 18" wide, but it should be 12" wide. I updated the post for future reference!

Little Reds Momma said...

fantastic tutorial on putting together this quilt. and its super cute! thanks a million for sharing! definitely will use some of your tips/techniques! :)

Corrie said...

I love the simple strip quilt you made. Do you have a tutorial for it or could maybe tell me the sizes of strips you used? Thank you!

Little Birdie Secrets said...

I just used varying sizes depending on what I had left! They were between 2 and 5 inches I believe, and as long as the width of the fabric (about 44"). I think whatever you use will look great as long as you try to vary the widths. Next time I make one I'll write up a tutorial!

Laurie said...

Bahahaha! I just came to your site to try to find a cute quilt pattern and saw this. Rand, it's a sad day when YOU used MY pattern. But so super flattering I can't stand it! Love your guts!

Eden House News and views said...

Can't wait to try on my next grandchild

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