quickie doll blanket
Next week our niece, C, turns 5. For several weeks now, I've been wracking my brains trying to figure out what to get for a birthday present. Since her family lives in North Carolina, we're lucky to see them even once a year, which means I haven't spent loads of time with her. Hence, it's difficult to know precisely what she likes and what she already has.
Her mother has indicated that handmade gifts are always appreciated, so that's a place to start. I know very well how particular and opinionated 5yo children can be about what they wear, so I wanted to steer clear of clothing. Plus, kids grow fast and C is already tall for her age, so sizing would be a little tricky.
Yesterday, Anya hit on a great idea: a doll blanket. I know this much about C: she loves her dolls! We also know she is fond of the color purple. So Anya looked through the fabric I've got and found exactly three pieces containing purple (that's all I've got in purple; good thing she wasn't looking for pink or she would have come up empty!). Then we pulled a basic quilt block book off the shelf and found a simple design to make and got to work.
The result? A few pinwheels in purple dots and stripes, with a bit of sashing in between, and a last minute addition of jumbo rickrack trim (which I have on hand for just this sort of project, of course.)
I don't know why, but these dots make my head spin if I look at them for too long. Something about the size and color contrast, I think. Still, they're fun.
Here's the back. Those flowers are awfully girly, but I've always liked this print:
Since this is a small doll quilt (finished size probably 15x15 or so) and not intended to actually keep any living creature warm, I didn't bother to add batting or really quilt it. I just top-stitched around the edges before adding the rickrack trim.
I had to rush these pictures before it started raining and before I had to run to the post office to make sure the birthday package got sent out today (mail service is a bit slow between here and Winston-Salem, I'm afraid), so I neglected to get a close-up of the piecing. It was a rather hurried sewing job, but I still managed to get nice neat corners in most places, which surprised me. I'm not always so good at that.
Who knows how much use this little blanket will get? Honestly, when you make stuff for kids, there's no telling whether or not they'll like it. Some things get used to rags, and some things hardly get touched. The latter doesn't even hurt my feelings so much because who knows what they want in the first place if you didn't ask? Still, I feel good knowing I made something totally unique for her, and I know Anya feels good having helped with the design process.