Baby Name Quilt: Tutorial

Baby Name Quilt Tutorial - {The Ribbon Retreat Blog}

– Supplies –

– 1 1/4 yards for main fabric

– 1 1/4 yards for back fabric

– Fat Quarters or 1/4 yards for your borders and name – (How many depends on how many different fabrics you want for the border. I had 5 different fabrics and it was WAY more than enough. You could get away with 3 different fabrics.)

– 1/2 yard for binding – (If you go with a lot of fabrics for the border, you can skip buying binding fabric and use the extra fabric from the borders to do a scrappy binding.)

HeatnBond – (If you decide to stitch around the letters, get lite. If you leave it alone, like I did, get ultrahold.)

Fabric Marker

Okay let’s get started!! 🙂

First, cut your main fabric.
You will want to cut it to measure 38″ x 36″.
To do this, leave your fabric folded in half and cut 36″ or one yard.
Then open your fabric and cut it to be 38″.
Then press the wrinkles out.

Next we are going to trace and cut out the letters for the name.

I found a font I liked on and printed out my letters.
I only printed out the letters once, so
since I did BRADY, I only did the G and N for GARYN since the
A, R, and Y were already printed in the first name.
It may take printing a few times to get the right size.
The font size I used was about 250.

Once you have your letters printed, we are going to trace them onto the HeatnBond.
You will need to be able to see the letter on the back of the paper.
Because my printer is running out of ink, the letters weren’t very dark.
I turned the paper over and traced the letters so they would show up through the HeatnBond.
You will use the back of the paper (so the letters are all backwards)
and trace your backwards letters onto your HeatnBond.
Trace all your letters to make the name.

If you are using the same fabric for all the letters, you don’t need to cut out your letters.
Instead, just make sure you can get the HeatnBond all on the fabric.
If you are using different fabrics for each letter or name, then go ahead and cut out your letters.
Make sure to leave a little bit of leeway around the letters.

Now place your letters on the WRONG side of your fabric.
Follow the instructions on your HeatnBond, but generally you will iron down the HeatnBond for a few seconds.

Once you have the letters ironed onto all your fabric, you can cut them out!
Now you will cut out the letters exactly.

Next you will line your letters up on your main fabric.
I used a ruler to help keep my lines straight.
Use a fabric marker to line where your letters will go.

Now we will iron our letters onto the main fabric! 🙂
Do one name at a time.
Line the letters up around your markings you made with the fabric marker.

To adhere the letters to the fabric, you will peel off the paper side of the letter.
Then put your letter down on the main fabric.
Once you’re ready, iron your letter down.

Continue doing this until all of your letters are adhered to the main fabric.

Now you can leave the letters as is, especially if you used HeatnBond Ultrahold.
I am only using this quilt as a photo prop so I don’t foresee having to wash it much.
If you do want to use it a lot, use HeatnBond Lite and then stitch around the letters.
Use matching or clear thread.

Now we are going to work on our border.

Get all your fat quarters or 1/4 yard fabrics that you want to use for this border.
The length of each fabric is entirely up to you.
You will need to end up with 4 strips of the fabrics.
After they are sewn together, you want four strips that are 38″ long.

Cut your fabrics into 1 1/2″ strips.
I just got my fat quarters and cut two or three 1 1/2″ strips the length of the fabric.
After I got all my strips cut out, I shortened some and kept some longer.

Then I placed my strips along the main fabric to make a border.
Place your strips down in whatever pattern you’d like.
Make sure the strip will be long enough after it’s sewn. The seams will shrink the length of the fabric.
I don’t use a scientific method for this; I just make the strip extra long.

Once the strips are placed how you’d like, we can sew them together!
Sew the strips, right sides together, using a 1/4″ seam.

Once you have your four strips sewn, you will press the seams down.

Now place your sewn strips down along the main fabric.
Cut off excess ends if necessary.
Make sure all your strips are 38″ long.

Now we are going to sew our finished strips onto the main fabric.
Pin and sew, right sides together, the along the 38″ side.

I sewed with a 1/4″ seam.
When I was done with my two sides, I pressed the seams.

Next you will add the other two strips along the top and bottom of the main fabric.
Pin, sew, and press.

Now we are going back to our left over main fabric and cut 2 strips that are 2″ x 40″ (for the sides)
and 2 strips that are 2″ x 41″ (for the top and bottom.)

Once you have these strips cut, you will pin and sew, right sides together, the sides first.
Press open.

Then pin, sew, and press the top and bottom strips.

Now we are finished with the top of our quilt!!!
Great job!

The back of the quilt is much easier than the front!

You can keep the back plain with one piece of fabric, or do a scrappy strip like I did.

Lay your back fabric down.
Then lay your finished quilt top on top.
If your fabric has a pattern that needs to go a certain way, place the top of the quilt accordingly.

Cut around the finished quilt top.
Make sure to leave about 2 inches all the way around.
You want your quilt back to be larger than your quilt top.

If you want to leave the back all one fabric, then you’re done! 🙂

If you want to do a scrappy strip, then keep following.

Choose where you want the strip to go and cut your back fabric into two.

Now cut our your squares.
I used left over fabric from my fat quarters and chose the fabrics
that would look best with the back fabric.

Cut nine 5 1/2″ squares.
If you are doing more than one square from the same fabric, cut a 5 1/2″ strip.
Then go back and cut the strip to make 5 1/2″ squares.
Lay them on your back fabric to make sure that it will be long enough.

(I laid my squares out and thought I had enough. I forgot to take into account the strip
shrinking after it’s sewn together. So I added one more square to make nine squares.)

Once you like how the squares look, sew them right sides together.
And remember to press your seams.

Now place your strip along the side of the back fabric, right sides together, and pin.

Sew your strip to the back fabric and press.

Add the other piece of the back fabric.
Pin, sew, and press.

Now you’re finished with your top and back of your quilt!
We are now ready to baste the quilt.

The next post will be on basting the quilt.
Basting is temporarily putting your quilt pieces together.
We will do this with safety pins.
While the quilt is being held with safety pins, we will sew the quilt together.

For the next tutorial on basting, make sure to get batting and lots of safety pins.
You can get batting by the yard or in bags for certain sizes.

If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions, please email me at
I will also answer any comments made on the blog.

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  1. Posted July 30, 2011 at 8:59 am | Permalink

    I love it!

  2. Talley
    Posted July 30, 2011 at 11:32 am | Permalink

    Adorable! I can’t wait to get started 🙂 thanks for posting!

  3. Susan M Jensen
    Posted March 30, 2012 at 9:51 pm | Permalink

    The cutest lap size isnt it?? Love it. My donating box could use a few, Unwed mother & Abusive shelter for women I think could use them. Thanks. Who is the cute little model???

    • The Ribbon Retreat
      Posted March 30, 2012 at 11:51 pm | Permalink

      Thank you! The small size also makes them quicker to make. 🙂 The model is my little one who is now 11 months old! Time flies. 🙂

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