ABC Menagerie baby quilt – a tutorial

Recently I was commissioned to make a baby quilt for a lovely newborn baby boy. As it happened, I had the perfect fabrics on hand to make him this gorgeous ABC quilt.


Front of ABC Menagerie baby quilt

This is a really simple quilt design so I thought I’d share a short tutorial for anyone who’d like to make something similar.

What I used for this quilt:

1 x ABC Menagerie alphabet panel (if you don’t have a panel, then substitute fussy cut 5.5 inch squares)

1 x ABC Menagerie layer cake

0.5 metres fabric for the binding – I used the ABC Menagerie blue spotted fabric

1.5 metres fabric for the backing – I used the ABC Menagerie red circles

1 x crib size wadding or batting

Making the quilt:

I cut out the ABC blocks from the panel, remembering to leave the 1/4 inch seam allowance around each square.  There were only 28 squares in the panel so I cut an additional two similar sized squares from the layer cakes to give 30 in total.  These extra squares are the multi-animal squares.

For the layout, I chose 30 layer cake squares and laid them out in a 5 x 6 pattern. Then I put the ABC squares on the layer cake squares and moved them around until I was happy with the arrangement.  Of course, I took a photo to help me remember what goes where.

Each of the 30 layer cake squares were into four 2.5 inch strips.

The layer cake strips were sewn to the sides of the relevant ABC square and seams pressed away from the ABC square.  The layer cake strips were then trimmed in line with the ABC square.

The remaining layer cake strips were sewn to the top and bottom of the ABC square.  Again, seams were pressed away from the ABC square.

Finished blocks were trimmed to 9.5 inches.

TOP TIP:  To avoid having to match seams when joining the blocks, I alternated whether I added the initial layer cake strips to the sides or top/bottom of the ABC square. You can see the alternating seams between blocks more clearly in the image below.

Detail of ABC Menagerie baby quilt

Detail of ABC Menagerie baby quilt

Blocks were sewn together into rows and then the rows sewn together to make the quilt top.

To ensure I had the required width for the backing, I created a panel made from some of the remaining layer cake squares cut into 5 inch,  4 inch, 3 inch or 2.5 inch widths and then sewn together to the required length.  Seams were pressed open on the panel to make it as flat as possible.  The backing fabric was cut vertically 15 inches from one selvedge and the panel inserted.  Again, these seams were pressed open.


Back of ABC Menagerie baby quilt

The quilt was pin-basted and I used a walking foot to quilt in free-hand wavy lines.  These wavy lines are very forgiving and a good choice for new quilters worried about keeping their lines straight. They also provide great texture to the quilt making it cosy and tactile.


Detail of back of ABC Menagerie baby quilt

This quilt is a lovely, bright and happy addition to the little boy’s nursery.

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Detail of ABC Menagerie baby quilt

I hope this tutorial has inspired you to make your own simple baby quilt to welcome a new addition to your family or a friend’s family.

Have fun!

Like what you see?  Remember you can follow me on FacebookInstagram and Pinterest to see more of my lovely makes.


Baby boy Polaroid quilt

A new baby calls for a very special gift and what could be more special than a gorgeous  baby quilt.  

My latest obsession is definitely Polaroid blocks.  I love them and don’t they make a fabulous baby quilt?   Here I have fussy-cut my favourite fabrics to produce a quilt perfect for the new man in your life.  Each of the blocks has then been cut to make them slightly wonky, as though the Polaroids have been tipped from a box onto the quilt.  

There is so much to discover in this quilt.  You’ll find a boy riding a scooter, a fierce ninja, a tiny snail, a cute dachshund.  There is a crow peeking from the bushes, some ghoulish skeletons and my favourite, a scary tyrannosaurus (RAWWRR!).


Baby boy photo quilt

Baby boy Polaroid quilt

This little quilt, being approximately 27 by 32 inches, is the perfect size for a baby.  It is soft and supple and therefore great for cuddling baby.  It can also be a play mat, changing mat or pram blanket when the baby is little.  

Quilting detail on baby boy Polaroid quilt

Baby boy Polaroid quilt detail

Even better, it can be folded and rolled small enough to fit into a bag so the quilt can go wherever they go.  Once your baby boy gets a bit older, the Polaroids will make for fun games of i-spy or for story-telling.   Use it as a wall hanging, as a colourful addition at the end of their big bed or thrown over a chair.  

Backing on baby boy quilt

Baby boy quilt reverse

The backing in Kona cotton teal looks great against the binding – a sweet seedling print by Denyse Schmidt.  

Being made from 100% cotton makes this quilt so easy to care for.  Just give it a short, cold machine wash and dry it flat in the shade, or pop it in a dryer on a low setting.  It will come out as good as new.  

This quilt will make a wonderfully versatile and practical gift for any baby and will soon be available via my Folksy shop.  

Like what you see?  Remember you can follow me on FacebookInstagram and Pinterest to see more lovely makes.


Gender neutral baby quilt

When I saw this gorgeous rabbit fabric, I knew it would make a lovely baby quilt.  It is sweet without being overly babyish.  The stylish choice for all modern babies.
I have used it to make a whole cloth quilt using the same tutorial from Brighton Sewing Centre that I used for a previous quilt.  The only change that I made was to cut the main fabric one inch larger on all sides to allow for shrinkage.  
Crib quilt

Baby quilt

I chose the rabbits in a gender neutral aqua however it also comes in an equally pretty peach.  The backing is a gorgeous fluffy cloud fabric from the Storybook collection from Moda.  Perfect for sweet dreams.  
After auditioning lots of fabrics for the binding, I finally settled on this gold spot print which adds just the right amount of colour.  As before, I quilted in straight lines by eye whilst taking care to avoid the rabbits.  
Crib quilt

Baby quilt

The final quilt is about 1 metre square and has been washed to give it that lovely antique look.  And as it is 100% cotton, it feels cuddly and soft.
If, like me, you have fallen in love with the bunny fabric I have used (part of the Dress Me For The Playground collection by Dear Stella), it is available from Fabric HQ.  

Whole cloth baby quilt

A new baby calls for something special.  In this mass market age, it is often difficult to find a gift that is individual and unique.  
A little whole cloth quilt such as this one fits the bill perfectly as it is relatively quick to make and can be made in any combination of colours or fabric patterns you choose.   What is a whole cloth quilt, you ask?  Good question.  A whole cloth quilt has the top layer made from a single large piece of fabric, without patchwork or appliqué.  Often they are very heavily quilted in intricate patterns.  In this example, less so.
I made this one in about two days following a Brighton Sewing Centre tutorial.  It is a mystery to me as to how they made their version in an afternoon.  Perhaps they meant they only worked on it in the afternoons.  Anyway, moving on.
The tutorial makes a lovely crib quilt, about 1 metre square.  I used a pretty aqua for the backing and a gorgeous grey floral print for the binding.  As per the tutorial, I quilted in lines following the gingham check.  The quilting is not that obvious on the gingham, however it shows up very effectively on the back as a series of unevenly spaced lines. 
I have washed this quilt to give it that lovely, crinkly vintage look.  And, as it is made from 100% cotton, it will be gentle on baby’s soft skin.
So there you have it.  A lovely handmade gift to welcome a new arrival.  

A practical baby gift

A special letter arrived the other day.  It was a thank you letter from Claudia and included some lovely photos of her enjoying the quilt that I made for her.  Thanks Claudia.  I am so pleased to know that you liked it.

This is another baby quilt that I made recently and it has already been purchased as a gift for a new mum.  I think it will make a wonderfully versatile and practical present.  

The size, approximately 27 by 30 inches, is perfect as a play mat,  changing mat or pram blanket when the baby is little.  It can be folded and rolled small enough to fit into a bag so the quilt can go wherever they go.  Being made from 100% cotton makes it so easy to care for.  Just give it a short, cold machine wash and dry it flat or pop it in a dryer on a low setting.  It will come out as good as new.

Once the baby gets a bit older, the various woodland animals will be great for playing games of i-spy.   It will make a colourful addition at the end of their big bed, as a wall hanging or thrown over a chair.  A useful and beautiful gift for any baby.  

Congratulations! It’s a beautiful baby girl.

I fell in love with this gorgeous Maman Petites Filles fabric as soon as I saw it.  Even the fabric information on the selvage is lovely.







I could not resist using it in a baby quilt and here it is.  A  simple strip design in a selection of fabrics in peach, chocolate and cream that co-ordinate beautifully with the little girls admiring the new arrival.  Just pink enough without being too sugary-sweet.






It is backed with a cuddly, soft organic cotton flannel from Cloud 9 and a pretty pink fabric from the squared elements range was used for the binding.







This quilt was made for a friend who has recently given birth to a beautiful baby girl.
Hello Claudia.  Welcome to the world.