Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Why buy when you can make it?

One of the other moms at Early Intervention showed me a blanket she had purchased for her daughter.  They run $25 and her daughter loves her blanket, I had some left over minky fabric from another blanket so I decided to make one. 
Forgive the quick cell phone picture

What you'll need:
patterned fabric
softer plush fabric (I used minky)
contrasting thread
a piece of ribbon (optional)

Figure out how large you want to make the blanket and how large you would like the tabs to be.  I made my blanket 16" x 16" and the tabs 1" wide x 5" long. Cut 1 set out of your patterned fabric and 1 set out of your soft fabric. I made 12 tabs, 3 for each side. I used a 1/8" seam allowance but you can do whatever you are comfortable with.  Just make sure you account for your seam allowance when you cut your fabric.
A ruler and rotary cutter make this part easier

This is the tedious part, sewing together those little tabs. Place a patterned strip and a soft strip right sides facing and sew 1 short side and 2 long sides together.

Now turn it right side out.
Ben helped turn them while I sewed

You can leave the top seam unfinished because that will be hidden in the finished blanket.  I started tying all my knots in the tabs.  You can do it later but if your tabs are shorter it may be rough.

Pin the tabs to the blanket the the unfinished ends together.
I did 3 on each side.

I wanted my minky side to be showing on the tabs when it shows on the back so I pinned them with patterned sides together. Just remember, the side you pin face down against your pattern will be the side that shows when the blanket is facing up.
The left one shows how I sewed, the right is how it will lay when finished

Sew the tabs in place with a 1/8" seam allowance. You only need to go over them once because we'll be securing them more later.
I added a piece of ribbon in a loop to one corner just like the original blanket.  You don't have to do it, but it makes it easier to clip it on to something.
a fun contrasting color, left over ribbon is easy to find

Now place the minky on top of your patterned fabric right sides together.  Make sure all of the tabs are laying flat against the patterned fabric.
make sure the tabs are inside like this

Now sew with a 1/4" seam allowance so you get the ends of all those tabs again.  Leave 1 1/2" open for turning.

Turn your blanket right side out. Instead of doing a plain topstich I used the zig zag stitch.  You could always use a more decorative stitch because it will show with a contrasting thread.

All done, much cheaper than buying it and much more personal to give as a gift.
Lila approves of her new blanket.

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