Oh, babies. I get so very warm and fuzzy when my friends have babies. I remember those first few hours, those early days, the bubbly, dizzy, disoriented, sleep-deprived, crazy-in-love feelings. I can't help but smile and hug my little ones even tighter.
This year, I've been sending out handmade baby gifts as much as possible, inspired by a very close friend of mine who passed away from leukemia in January (thinking of it still knocks the breath out of me). She was a firm believer in thoughtful, personalized, beautifully presented gift-giving. During my first pregnancy, she sent Juniper hand-dyed, personalized onesies that spoke of not only how much she cared about my baby girl but also of how well she knew my own little quirks.
Shortly after her funeral, her family retrieved her belongings from the hospital. Among them were the gifts that she had meant to send after Owen's birth - a cross-stitched dinosaur next to the name "Owen" and an unfinished hummingbird next to the name "Juniper". Surely any handmade gift is meaningful, but now that my friend is gone, these little things, they comfort, they remind me that she loved my babies even though she was half a world away and bearing burdens that I cannot begin to imagine.
Wow, this post has gotten away from me. This was all just to say that it is nice to make and receive sweet little things for new babies. And fun. I know that every new mama needs and welcomes all those practical gizmos that are standard registry fare. But sometimes, it is also nice to receive something that was made just for your little one.
I've made a handful of Liberty Baby Bibs that I sent without photographing (I love thinking about lucky little babies who get to spit up on gorgeous Liberty of London tana lawn fabric), but I did manage to snap a few photos of this quilt I made for Baby Quinn. Quinn's mama was my friend back when we were college students living in Boston, idling our days away as only the young and childless can do.
I wanted a bright, boyish, outdoorsy design for this sure-to-be-nature-loving little man. The pattern was loosely based on this one (I orginally included the outer sashing but thought it looked a bit too modern and stark and un-baby-like). For fabric choices, I started with the Monaluna Circa 60 Beach Mod collection and added some undersea prints (including some precious Heather Ross - I love those seahorses!), some Kona solids, and a few Robert Kaufman geometric prints. I lightly quilted it with random diagonals to keep it nice and soft.
I also used some of the fabric scraps to make this lovey-sized snuggle blankie, backed with supersoft minkee (no batting) and quilted with little birdie footprints.
My sewing assistant: