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How To - Making a Strip Quilted Baby Bib (Bias Tape Too!)
This How-To covers a variety of skills - strip quilting and log cabin blocks, applying single fold bias tape as a binding, all to create a hand made bib for your baby or as a gift. You can use the concepts learned from this project to make a pillow top with a log cabin block or blocks, to bind a neckline or placemats, or any number of items. Enjoy this very simple project. Any questions? Feel free to email us and ask
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For the purposes of this bib, we used an 8" x 8" piece of prequilted fabric. You could use any fabric and batting or use a washcloth or any type of backing you like. Fold the backing fabric in half and cut a neck quarter-circle and cut the shape of a bib along the outer edges.

Open the bib and check the shape. Make sure it's symmetrical and one that you are happy with. If not, fold it and trim it to something that pleases you. You don't have to use the exact shape we used. Our bib is but a guide. This picture illustrates the back of the bib.

Mark the center top and center bottom on the front of the bib with pins or a marker. You will use this to place your first square in the log cabin and as a guide throughout placement of the strips of fabric.

Choose an array of colored fabrics that coordinate with the bib backing. We chose six purple fabrics. Cut several 1-1/2" strips to use for the strip quilting. Cut one 1-1/2" square to use for the first part of the block.

Using the center top of the bib as your guide, place the 1-1/2" block on angle, face up, with a corner at the center of the top of the bib.

Place another 1-1/2" strip face down on the first square, right sides together, and stitch with a 1/4" seam from the top of the block to the bottom, forming two squares when opened and finger pressed.

After finger pressing the above block open, place another strip face down along the edge of the two strips that are now face up. Pin in place and stitch with a 1/4" seam. Finger press open.

Place another strip face down along the edge of the strips finger pressed above. You should be surrounding the center block. Every time you stitch one strip down, you finger press it open, add another strip face down upon the new edge, stitch, finger press, and continue in this fashion. You are going around the center piece (the first block) as you work. If you make a mistake, not to worry. This is a small bib project and no one will notice. Try and adjust your next strip to make it as balanced as you can.

Every time you stitch one strip down, you finger press it open, add another strip face down upon the new edge, stitch, finger press, and continue in this fashion. You are going around the center piece (the first block) as you work. If you make a mistake, not to worry. This is a small bib project and no one will notice. Try and adjust your next strip to make it as balanced as you can.

Alternate your colors as you go around the block. You can use light/dark/light/dark, or simply randomize your fabric strips. Remember to continue to use a 1/4" seam.

When adding strips is complete, when it covers the bib top almost completely, finger press any remaining seams open and pin down the edge pieces. Note the placement of the strips and the logic in the stitch, finger press, placement, stitch, finger press, placement sequence.

Turn the bib over and stitch a 1/8" seam around the bib to hold the strips in place, as well as to mark a 1/8" guideline for the bias tape placement.

Trim excess strip fabric from the edge of the bib, bringing it back into shape. If stitching the log cabin design has caused any shifting in size, trim the bib until it's in a pleasing shape once more.

Turn the bib over and note the beautiful fabric arrangement and the 1/8" seam line. This is your last chance to trim the bib into another shape if you are not totally happy with the way it looks.

Measure completely around the bib, including the neckline, and add about 14". This is the amount of single fold bias tape you will need. Make sure it matches both sides of the bib so it is reversible.

Working on the log cabin side of the bib and working with the neckline first, open one side of a piece of the single fold bias tape (use a piece that is long enough to encase the neckline) and place the tape on the 1/8" seam line you created earlier at the neckline. Do NOT iron the bias tape. You can line up the now open tape's fold line with the seam as you go. Pin into place.

Place the needle in the fold line/on the 1/8" seam line prior sewn and sew slowly from one end of the neckline bias tape to the other. Gently ease the bias tape around the curve (it will stretch, but do not stretch it too much). Trim the excess bib seam allowance but do not trim the bias tape.

Turn the bias tape to the other side. Do not unfold it this time. Pin it in place. Machine stitch close to the edge (it will show on the other side; you may wish to choose hand stitching rather than machine to make invisible stitching).

Find the center of the remaining bias tape and place the center at the bottom center of the bib. From the bottom center, open one side of the single fold bias tape and pin it in place on the 1/8" seam line from earlier going all the way up to the neckline, being sure to enclose the raw edges created by the encased neckline. You should have about 6" to 7" of excess bias tape beyond the top of the bib. Again, stitch in the fold line as shown above. Do not stitch the excess bias tape at this time (the ties).

Trim the excess seam allowance of the bib without trimming the bias tape. Turn the bias tape to the other side, as well as folding the excess tape (the ties). Pin in place. Stitch from the end of one tie to the end of the other tie, going around the bib and being sure to enclose the top of the bib at the neckline raw edges.

Complete stitching at the end of the tie. Not the corner of the neckline is encased in the bias tape binding.

Make a knot in the end of the ties. You do not need to make it fancy or make it right on the end of the tie. The knot won't come out with most uses and washings.

Turn the bib over and look at what you've done. Smile and be proud!

Baby gifts are fun and generally easy to make. You can use the same fabrics you make a bib with to create a burping pad, a small pillow, or other items to go along with a coordinated gift set. The log cabin design is one of the first ones that I ever made in a quilt, and it turned out to be a delight because I found that I could save even the smallest scrap and use it for a project. You can measure each strip before you use it or you can be more casual and stitch, followed by trimming of excess strip fabric. You'll find a rhythm as you make more and more of these. The single fold bias tape is a pleasure to work with also. It takes a little while to get the hang of it, but as I learned to match the open fold line with a seam I had sewn earlier, it made application of this tape much easier. Practice using bias tape. There are several kinds. Once you are comfortable with manufactured tapes, you can learn to make your own, but then, that's another lesson to be put up on SewingWeb.com, isn't it? As always, email with questions ;-)





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