My Sunshine Baby Quilt–Step 1 Row Assembly and Initial Blocks

Happy Sunday Everyone! As I sit writing this post I hear fireworks, car horns, and various shouts of joy…why you might ask? THE BRONCOS ARE GOING TO THE SUPER BOWL! Woo Hoo. I may be a girl who quilts, but I LOVE sports!  I live on a hill here in Denver and from my second story you can see all of downtown including Sports Authority Field at Mile High.  When we won I looked out the window of my craft room (yes, I was sewing during the 2nd half while watching) and saw flashes of fireworks and smoke from the field.  Pretty great afternoon if I do say so myself.

Now onto the next exciting topic of the day, the My Sunshine Baby Quilt!  One of my oldest and dearest friends from college, Jenny, is having her second child and is due March 21st.  Likewise, another one of my college roommates and close friend, Audra is having her second boy and is due in March as well.  Needless to say the next two quilts will be of the baby kind.  These are the most fun for me because they are small and you get to use super cute, super fun prints. 

First up, Jenny’s quilt.  We are going to use My Sunshine (by Zoe Pearn for Riley Blake Designs) and create the cutest, easiest pattern ever. 

My Sunshine Baby Quilt - Step 1

There is a Missouri Star Quilt Co. tutorial on the pattern we are going to use if you would like to watch it, but the way I will be showing is similar, but with different steps.  My mom is also doing this pattern, for a quilt of her own and she has made some suggestions to improve the steps so we are going to go with those. 

Side Note: My mom….who has stayed 100 feet away from quilting for many many years (she’s a big sewer) has found…wait for it…pre-cuts! She is in love with quilting and has projects coming out of her ears. (Personally I think it’s because I’m doing it, but I’m sure she’ll say otherwise). Winking smile I’m happy to have my mom along for the ride!

What will the final blocks look like? Here is a drawing of the finished pattern. When we get to the layout stage you will see the versatility of this block. It is simply amazing!

My Sunshine Baby Quilt - Step 1

Here’s what you will need:

1 – Jelly Roll

1/2 yd – Border Print if desired (optional)

1.5 yds – Backing and Binding Fabric

That’s it…yes, another reason why I love making baby quilts. 

Step 1: Row Layout

Big decisions need to be made your block size depends on it.  My mother chose to sew together 5 rows at a time which will give her larger blocks and a less kaleidoscope affect.  I, however, am sewing together 3 strips at a time which will give me smaller blocks and therefore more blocks overall.  Mine will end up being 6×6 and hers will end up around 10×10.  The great thing is that it is 100% up to you.  The only advice I will give is that you will want to stick to odd numbers. It is a basic rule in design and your eye prefers it that way.

Here are some of the combinations I’ve chosen.  Check on Wednesday for a writing about color theory and why I chose the way I did, but until then go with your gut and start laying them out!

To the work surface wall!

My Sunshine Baby Quilt - Step 1

I have no idea why this picture is so grainy, but you can see how I start the project. I lay all of my strips out so I can see what all of the prints are and how many of each I have.

Next, I lay them out in their initial strip pairings. Here is a sample of a few of the combinations. Yes, I take pictures so I don’t forget the order. 

My Sunshine Baby Quilt - Step 1

Next, because I know I won’t be working on them immediately and I need to reclaim my table, ironing board, etc. I lay them on top of each other left to right and pin the top.  I then stack all of the strips on top of each other and fold in half. Keeps everything organized and everything in order. I pin them so I remember the combos and can just grab one at a time if I only have time to work on it in spurts.

My Sunshine Baby Quilt - Step 1

Here they are just feathered out so you can see the concept:

My Sunshine Baby Quilt - Step 1

Step 2: Row Assembly

Once you have your color combinations figured out it is time to sew them together. We will be using the standard 1/4” seam. Remember to press you seams towards the darkest fabric noting that not all rows will be the same directionally speaking. 

Back: My Sunshine Baby Quilt - Step 1Front: My Sunshine Baby Quilt - Step 1

Step 3: Initial Block Cutout

Now that all of your rows are assembled it is time to cut them into blocks.  Just like the Supernova Quilt we are going to measure the width of the final row and cut that same size because remember 1/4” is not a 1/4” is not a 1/4”.  What is important with this quilt is that you cut them all evenly.  This may require a little trimming, but if you are consistent with your seams (which you should be Winking smile) then it should be an easy task to cut them square.  Mine are all ending up at 6 1/4” which means that my finished blocks will be 5 3/4” square.  (Shh don’t tell anyone that I didn’t mark out my 1/4” for this quilt. It is a free-form pattern one so I figured I’d catch it on the next one….stress free, remember)

Since mine are 6 1/4” wide I will be cutting the length to 6 1/4”.  Here we go!

Make sure you line up your strips with the straight lines on your cutting mat.  Next we need to trim the salvage off the edges to create a perfectly straight line. (Remember to keep you other hand on your ruler when cutting. I took the photo then cut.)

My Sunshine Baby Quilt - Step 1

My Sunshine Baby Quilt - Step 1

After that we need to measure the 6 1/4” and cut.  I really like the ruler I used because it shows the 6 1/4” wide and the 6 1/4” which makes it easy to keep on track.  (It is a 6 1/2”x6 1/2” ruler)

My Sunshine Baby Quilt - Step 1

My Sunshine Baby Quilt - Step 1

Ready to do the rest on your own? I thought so!  Here’s your homework for next week.  Figure our your combos, sew strips together and cut out your blocks.  We’ll meet back here for the next step which I must say is pretty fun!

Have a great Sunday! Have a fantastic week!



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