Intro: Baby Texture Mat
I’ve seen a few toys and quilts for babies, made from different textured materials that give the baby stimulation while it’s playing. I decided to try to make one for my sister’s baby.
It was much easier than I thought to make. It does take a bit of time but the result is worth it.
You will need:-
· Sewing machine
· Bondaweb (which is fusible interfacing)
· Materials of different textures….e.x. denim, leather, felt, etc.
· Wadding (filling fluff for quilts)
· Scissors, Pins, Textile marker
IDEA AND LAYOUT
To get a picture in mind I just looked at which materials I had. I had mainly green fabrics and a little piece of dark brown leather …so I decided on a tree.
To start with I fixed the background and sew down the tree trunk. Then I cut out many small leaf shapes and lay them down (without sewing). I took some photo before I started with using the interfacing so I could remember the main layouts of the design
Step 1: Background and Bondaweb
With your design thought out, you can start working with the interfacing. It says on the packet how you can use it and it is quite easy when you get going. It just involves ironing and being carefully not to burn yourself or the interfacing.
**I made the mistake of cutting my shapes first then interfacing them…it took much more time. Next time I will iron the interfacing to larger pieces of material and then cut the shapes out afterwards.**After you have all your shapes cut out and interfaced then you can begin laying out the pattern and then slowly fixing the background and iron them down.
Step 2: Matching Thread and Zigzag
So now you have ironed down the first layer of leaves.
Now to start with sewing, in this project I tried to match the thread with the material and I used a quite tight zigzag stitch to fix down the shapes. The interfacing is great just to keep everything in place so all you need to think about is sewing straight and neat around the edges of the shapes.
Step 3: Layer by Layer
Working layer by layer with interfacing then sewing you can create a good effect of a real tree full of leaves. So every layer was interfaced down with the iron and then sewn around with matching thread. This is the part that took the most time just because of being neat and the amount of leaves I want to have on it. A simpler design would take less time, of course.
Step 4: Front to Back
I thought it looked a bit bare, with just the tree, so I sew a sun and some blue corduroy clouds in the same process as the leaves. So the front is finished and is ready to join with the back.
Lay the front and back, right sides together and pin a rectangle shape and sew. **remember to leave a gap in the side so you can fill the quilt with wadding later**
After you have sewn the rectangle you can snip the corners as shown so that the quilt will have nice square corners when you flip it out.
Cut off the extra bits of material and turn the quilt the right way around.
Step 5: Wadding and Closing
So now you have a ‘pillow like’ quilt pocket and you just cut the wadding to the size of the pocket and put it inside. The easiest way of measuring this is to lay the wadding out and lay the quilt on top and just cut around it. I used quilt wadding that comes in rolls in the fabric shop. Unfortunately I have no picture of this but it is the simple part.
The closing of the quilt is best done by hand with a stitch like shown in the picture, I think it is called slipstitch. You have to take your time and do small stitches close together so it is securely shut. (my mum helped me to show this part, while I took the pictures).
It is also really good to stitch through the quilt at various points so that the wadding doesn’t move around inside. This is shown in the pictures, I’ll try to explain it here.
First you sew through all the layers and hold on the end of the thread instead of tying a knot. Then come back through to the backside of the quilt and you should have two ends of thread. Tie a knot, or double knot, in them.
You can leave the ends hanging as detail but since was for a baby I cut them off. For this size of quilt, I just stitched in six places, like a grid.