Even in the mild Spring weather I still find myself reaching for a blanket if I am reading or watching a movie on the couch at night. This is a problem because, until now, I didn't have any throw sized blankets, only gigantic bed sized quilts which aren't very convenient when you have to fold them back up at the end of the night.
At a recent Purl Bee meeting Page mentioned that she was having the same issue and the idea for this project was born! We decided to make a very quick, very simply quilted lap blanket using a technique that Joelle used in the "Super Quick + Easy Baby Quilt" project from her book, Last Minute Patchwork and Quilted Gifts.
We also decided to use some of our favorite new fabric from designer Naomi Ito's Nani Iro line. These prints are beyond gorgeous. They have a unique painterly quality and come in the most beautiful colors. The fabric itself is a soft double gauze perfect for a Spring project. The wool batting I used made this piece feel so lofty that it in the end it seemed more like a fluffy duvet than a regular blanket.
This is my absolute favorite kind of sewing project: useful, beautiful, and quick. I actually timed it and it turns out that the entire project takes less than 2 and a half hours from start to finish. It would make a great housewarming gift and best of all you could whip it up on the afternoon of the housewarming party!
To make one roughly 58-inch by 42-inch blanket:
- Two 1 3/4-yards pieces of Nani Iro Fabric. I usedRainbow Pocho for Fabric A and Grey Saaa Saa for Fabric B the example duvet. (The purple duvet is made from Purple Fuwari and Lavendar Pocho. The orange and pink duvet is made from Orange Fuwari and White Fuwari)
- A throw sized Wool Batting
- A spool 100% cotton thread to match each fabric
Materials for the Flannel Version
In March 2012 I made a new Flannel version of these duvets! Sophisticated and elegant they use a mix of subtle Japanese Linen Blend Solids and ultra soft Ecrulet Flannel Stripes. The combination of fabrics is so plush and inviting that when I was all done, I felt like I had five puffy clouds on my desk. Everyone who walked by wanted to sink right into them!
To make one 58 X 42-inch blanket:
- 1 3/4-yards Ecrulet Flannel Stripes in Grey
- 1 3/4-yards of a Kiyohara Linen Blend Solid. I used, from top to bottom in the materials pic above: Violet Grey, Lavender, Denim, Light Beige, and Brown.
- A throw sized Wool Batting
- 100% cotton thread in color 3170. For this version of this project I used the same thread in the top and the bobbin.
Cutting and Sewing Together
Cut each of the fabrics to be 60-inches long. Do not cut the selvages.
Press both of them flat.
Lay Fabric A down, right side up and smooth it so there are no wrinkles. Do this along a clean surface large enough for the entire piece of fabric (I used my just-vacuumed living room floor.)
Then lay Fabric B fabric on top of Fabric A, wrong side up. In this case the striped fabric is slightly narrower than the dot fabric (it will be different for each fabric.) Center the striped fabric so that selvages of the wider fabric are poking out about 1/2-inch on either side.
Cut along the sides of the wider fabric to match it up with the more narrow fabric. If the pieces aren't exactly the same length trim them to match.
Lay the batting on top of the fabrics. Cut it to match the fabrics in the same manner as you did for fabrics.
Pin these three layers together along all four sides.
Using your machine's walking foot and the lighter of the threads sew around all four pinned sides with a 6/8-inch seam allowance leaving an 8-inch gap in the middle of one of the short sides.
Clip off the corners.
Turn the blanket right sides out through the gap. The right sides of both fabric will be facing out, the batting will be on the inside, and the seams will be hidden. Poke the corners out so they are nice and pointy.
Pin the gap closed with the raw edges on the inside of the blanket and handstitch it closed with a blindstitch.
Press the duvet on both sides and smooth it down on the flat surface again. Make sure that there are no major wrinkles.
Pin a safety pin through all three layers of the duvet every 7-inches along the entire area. Measure as shown above starting with a pin that is 7-inches from the top and 7-inches from the side. The next pin will be placed 7-inches to the right of this one, the next one 7-inches below the first, etc.
Repeat this until the entire duvet is pinned every 7-inches
Using the thread to match Fabric B in the bobbin and the Thread to match Fabric A in the top insert the duvet into the machine with the Fabric A side facing up. Using the machine's walking foot, quilt the duvet together at the pinned points using a bar tacking stitch, or a very short and wide zig zag. Remove the safety pins as you come to them.
The small quilting stitches will be almost invisible but will create a cozy tufted duvet.
Stitch in this manner at each pinned point, trim any excess threads, press one more time, and you're all done! Enjoy! --Molly