Sunday, January 15, 2012

Seth's "I-Spy" Quilt

Brrrrrr. Its cold outside today -11C....and that's with the sun shining...but the barometer is falling rapidly so I do believe we are in for more snow or rain. When the barometer falls, it triggers off the brain disorders I have and it affects my speech. Very hard to understand me today - but doesn't affect my thinking abilities and I can still type!

I thought today I would post a quilt I made for one of my grandsons. This type of quilt is known as an "I-Spy" or "Teach-Me" quilt. It is made from images sewing together in an apparent haphazard way so the child can learn to recognize various animals, people, cartoon characters, etc. Each of the younger grandchildren got one of these. I didn't quilt when the two older ones were babies.

As you can see - lots of different fabric. It looks complicated to make but its actually very easy - if you do it my way. Look closely and you will notice that it is actually 12 blocks, 3 across and 4 down. Each block is 12" finished. Here's how I do it. I gather up all fabric with various prints and/or trade with other quilters to get a large assortment. No two images are the same in the quilt unless I put same image in a different colour in so it becomes a way to teach colours as well...and there may be plain fabric with no images included as fillers. So, here's what you do. Pick an image, say the train. I trimmed it even on all four sides - does not have to be a square, just straight lines on all four sides. Find some small strips with tiny pattern and add to one side. Add a long strip to the bottom. Trim to 12 1/2" (the 1/2" is for seam allowances). If you need a small piece of fabric, that is when you use a plain colour with no image. It gives the eye a place to rest as well. Make 12 blocks the same way and then sew them together. Add borders if you wish - sometimes I do, sometimes I don't and sometimes they are pieced with different fabric too. Then just finish as any quilt, with batting and backing.

Do not even try to colour co-ordinate or put all similar images, say all jungle animals, in one block, etc. The idea is to mix up the images as much as you can so the child has to hunt for them. Although I put more "boy" stuff in for the boy quilts and more "girl" stuff if I was making one for a girl (I really need a new grand-baby girl), I do mix them up because they both have to learn about animals, butterflies, etc. So, my quilts are pretty much gender neutral.

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