Monday, January 23, 2012

Tutorial: Baby Log Cabin Tag Quilt

Do you ever need to get a gift together for a baby, and you don't have a lot of time? This baby blanket is made for that. Either you are an experienced sewist and everyone knows it so you can't show up with a store-bought gift...or you are new at sewing and you need something to give that is simple, but sure to wow. Either way - this baby quilt is perfect for that!

I originally came up with this pattern a couple of years ago, and since then I have made many versions of this blanket in all different colors. Here are three examples that I have photos of:

People love it when there baby has the little 'tags' (or in this case, ribbons) to grab and chew. However, most of the tag blankets that I have seen are little 12" squares. This size can be very useful, however I wanted to make a larger version of a tag blanket with a quilt look that can be a gift all by itself. Hence, the Baby Log Cabin Tag Quilt was born (hehe). Two layers of cute flannel + a layer of lightweight batting + many little ribbons to grab all pieced together in a baby-sized quilt = cuteness. The finished size of this quilt is about 26" x 36".

You will need 3 different flannel prints. You can buy 1/2 yard of each and barely have enough to piece together the front and the back, but you may end up hating yourself by the end of the quilt (especially when the back takes about 3 times as long to put together as the front and you literally end up with scraps of fabric that are too small to put in your scrap bin - not that I have done that or anything...). So, I would recommend maybe getting 2/3 of a yard, or maybe even 3/4 of a yard of 3 different fabrics. You may still have to piece together the back a little bit, but it won't be too bad. Or make it easy on yourself, buy enough of one of the fabrics that you can finish the whole back in it. You will also need one piece of lightweight batting that is large enough to cover 26" x 36". And, you will need about 24 pieces of ribbon, each cut to 3" long (I used 25 pieces on this quilt). Here is the breakdown:

I am using 3 flannel fabrics.

From the star fabric, cut:
one - 12-1/2" square
one - 4-1/2" x 17-1/2"
one - 4-1/2" x 21-1/2"

From the blue fabric cut:
one - 2-1/2" x 12-1/2"
one - 2-1/2" x 14-1/2"
one - 5-1/2" x 21-1/2"
one - 5-1/2" x 26-1/2"

From the chocolate fabric, cut:
one - 3-1/2" x 14-1/2"
one - 3-1/2" x 17-1/2"
two - 5-1/2" x 26-1/2"

Here is a diagram of how all of the fabric pieces go together:

This diagram shows the order that each piece is added (in ABC order) as well as where each size/color of fabric is located. It may be helpful to lay all of your pieces out in this diagram before you begin to sew.

Pieces are added along one edge of the main piece. Place the pieces right-sides together. Press the seam open before adding the next piece. Pieces are added in a spiral rotation around the center block (on top, the right, the bottom, the left, repeat). The same color fabric should only meet in an 'L' shape (the long sides of the rectangle should not be sewn to a fabric of the same color). All seam allowances are 1/4" unless otherwise noted.

1. Start with your 12-1/2" square from the star fabric. Add your 2-1/2" x 12-1/2" blue fabric on top of the square.
2. Press open.
3. Add your 2-1/2" x 14-1/2" on the rightside of the main piece.
4. Press open.

5. Add your 3-1/2" x 14-1/2" chocolate fabric on the bottom of the main piece.
6. Add your 3-1/2" x 17-1/2" chocolate fabric on the left side of the main piece.
7. Add your 4-1/2" x 17-1/2" star fabric on the top side of the main piece.
8. Add your 4-1/2" x 21-1/2" star fabric on the right side of the main piece.

9. Add your 5-1/2" x 21-1/2" blue fabric on the bottom of the main piece.
10. Add your 5-1/2" x 26-1/2" blue fabric on the left side of the main piece.
11. Add one 5-1/2" x 26-1/2" chocolate piece on the top of the main piece and one 5-1/2" x 26-1/2" chocolate piece on the bottom of the main piece.

Now you have the top of your Baby Log Cabin Tag Quilt completed.

Let's attach the ribbon. I have 25 pieces of ribbon, each 3" long, in assorted colors and textures that coordinate with my fabrics.

Choose the location of each ribbon along the outer edge of the quilt, matching up raw edges. Fold the ribbon over, so both raw edges of the ribbon are now lined up with the quilt edge.
Pin in place.

Repeat for all of the ribbons around the whole quilt.

Sew each ribbon onto to the top of the quilt with a small seam allowance (I used 1/8").
Forward and backstitch over each ribbon so that they are very secure.

Layer your batting, quilt backing, and quilt top together (in that order). The quilt backing and the quilt top should be facing right-sides together. All the ribbon loops should be between these layers (not sticking out). Pin around the edge of the quilt. Sew around the edge of the quilt leaving a few inches open on one side (it is best to leave the opening between ribbons).

Clip the four corners of the quilt. Turn right-side out.

Press the quilt, and pin the opening closed.
Sew the opening closed with a small seam allowance.

Top stitch around the entire quilt using a 1/4" seam allowance.

Quilt on top of the quilt. I used my stitch regulator (dropping the feed dogs) and did a combination of loops and little stars for my design.
You could also do straight or diagonal lines if you don't have a stitch regulator.

And, you have your finished Baby Log Cabin Quilt!

Happy Sewing!
Another project for baby:
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  1. LOVE this. Great explanation and I love the pictures. This is a great tutorial! I also looked around your blog..great ideas! Love the pizza roll idea you posted in Jan! I'm your newest follower


  2. I saw your link on Creative Itch. So cute! I did a taggy for my niece but now I am going to have another boy and I love the fabric you used. Thanks for sharing!

  3. This project is awesome! The fabrics you chose are great, I love all of the stars. It would be super cool if would come by today to enter my giveaway for a $50 Lowe's gift card and to link up to my very first party!
    Karah @ thespacebetweenblog = your newest follower

  4. How cute and a great tutorial too! I can't wait to try it. I pinned it so I can make it later. I would love if you would be willing to share at our party going on now-Monday. Thanks

  5. This is so great! I love big log cabin quilts. I'm a very beginning quilter and I love that this looks like something I could do! I'm going to pin it to my quilt board on pinterest! Thanks for the inspiration!

    Elizabeth @

    1. You can do this! Let me know how it goes for you; I would love to see a picture of how it turns out (and all of the fun fabrics that you chose!). Thanks for stopping by!

  6. Such a cute quilt! And great tutorial. Love the little ribbon tags and I know little ones would love them even more :o)

    Blessings & Aloha!

  7. This is brilliant. Wish I had seen this before I started another quilt for my little man. Maybe he needs two quilts? Haha.

  8. I think this is so cute and want to try it (I think I will add one more row, I like my baby blankets to be a little bigger). But, how did you do the back? If I am going to do the back in one big piece how much do I need?