Finishing a Quilt and Giving it to Baby

While there's something so satisfying about finishing a gift quilt or sewing project—simple or not—even more satisfying is when it is finally in the hands of the person you made it for.

A quilt for Baby Charlie.

Last week, I sent a baby quilt from Massachusetts to California, for a new baby born in late August. I stalked Baby Charlie's parents, as I was a little nervous about the package making its cross-country trek. But the box did arrive, and now baby and quilt are united!

I picked out the quilting cottons with my husband, who I dragged to the fabric store one Saturday afternoon. I believe my husband has an eye for color, while he'd tell you he has an eye for getting out of the store as quick as possible.

When we saw a blue fabric with fresh-water fish on it, it was a perfect choice for our outdoorsy, native New England friends currently living in California. We picked green and orange fabric to match the colors of the fish to complete the front. For the back, sea turtles added a touch of California oceans sure to please our diver friends.

The quilt will hopefully offer not only warmth, but lessons on the creatures that live in lakes, ponds, and oceans. We're sure it will, as Charlie's mom is an environmental science teacher.  

I also included a note with the quilt, saying it was made with love, but made to be loved. For me, nothing is worse than a quilt I made sitting on a shelf because it's handmade and deemed too pretty or too special to use. So Baby Charlie has free reign to spit up on it, drag it around, and do whatever he pleases with it.

Some of you might remember me saying earlier this fall I was done feeling the guilt of needing to make a baby quilt for every friend of mine with child. Now that Baby Charlie's quilt is complete, I am moving on to some new baby projects that I will share down the road. (Hint: bibs!)

I'm not necessarily done sewing baby blankets, though. But I have begun to think more strategically in terms of the designs I choose, and ways to finish a simple kids quilt pattern in a matter of days or a week, instead of months. Think simple, Abby! 

Sea turtles swim on this RJR fabric.

Are you looking for other great gift ideas for little ones? Check out Handmade Beginnings.

Have you finished any projects lately—simple, or complex? What are your thoughts on the joys of finally giving a gift to the person you spent hours making it for? I can't wait to hear.



Other sewing topics you may enjoy:


Edging & Borders, Quilts
Abby Kaufman

About Abby Kaufman

Abby Kaufman is assistant editor of Stitch magazine. When she's not scoping out new fabrics for her collection, Abby enjoys outdoor activities, and spending time with her husband and two dogs. 

5 thoughts on “Finishing a Quilt and Giving it to Baby

  1. A few years ago I came across this instruction

    for a simple baby blanket with a satin blanket binding. I have made it several times–it is my go-to baby shower gift, perfect for Florida babies who really don’t need a heavy carriage blanket. It is a great opportunity to use some of the stitches built into my sewing machine for quilting, and a good way to use up all thos fat quarters. When flannel is on sale I stock up on 1 1/4 yard lengths, to make sure I don’t waste any of the quilting fabric.

  2. I have recently fallen in love with quilting! When making a gift for someone else, quilting something is so much easier than making a garment, I think. I have done some non-traditional crib blankets recently. One was to look like a treasure map and one like the solar system. When I mailed them off I felt almost sad because I had enjoyed making them so much. Then I heard the response from my friend, and it made everything worth it. She was so excited!
    (I can’t seem to get the specific link on my phone, but if you want to see them, they are posted on my blog at and click on “blog”. They are the last two entries.)

  3. Hi Abby, I used to make complicated baby quilts. Now, for newborns, I put together
    2 flannels,1 1/2 yard WST and bind with satin tape. The babies love it. Some of those babies are 8 years old now, still loving them. This gives me time in the next 2-3 years to get to know the child’s personality, then make a special quilt.
    I recently finished a “big girl” quilt for my niece, Molly. Her joy in receiving that pink confection with fluffy cuddle backing was priceless.

  4. Hi Abby,

    I recently made 3 table runners for all 3 of my sisters. The excitement they showed at receiving them was worth all the trouble of making them. I’ve also made baby quilts for all 5 of my grandchildren – so much fun to do. I love making things for other people, especially loved ones.

  5. I get such enjoyment in making things especially for others. When they are finished, I’m sad – it’s kind of like giving birth and letting go. But to know the receiver is as pleased with the gift and I was in making it makes it totally worthwhile.