Mar 4, 2014

Posted by LeAnn Johnson

~Reversible Baby Blanket~

I often get an urge to serge! Let me explain. My hubby recently bought me a serger (he scored lots of brownie points with that one.) It's like a sewing machine but what's amazing is that it cuts the fabric and a puts a finishing stitch on the raw edges of your fabric, all at the same time. If you have one, then you don't need me to tell you how wonderful they are but my #1 reason for having a serger is that it saves time. It cuts out a lot of the preparatory work that is not particularly fun for me. I just want to sew!

Now, you don't need a serger to make a reversible blanket. Of course you can make one with a sewing machine and here is a great tutorial by Kacey at Stay-at-home Artist. She even makes some with decorative stitching. 

So last summer, my brother and his wife had their third boy. Their other two boys were obsessed with dinosaurs so I was elated when I found the perfect "dino fabric duo" while visiting my sister in Indiana. Not only do I love the neutral colors but I adore what I call, dino eggs on the opposite side. 

This was my first attempt to make a blanket with 2 fabrics together. It wasn't much different than one. In fact, I didn't expect that it would be so easy so I didn't take step-by-step pictures while making it. I had to practice a lot on the one sided blankets while first learning to use my serger, so I thought I would need some practice with two. So please forgive me for the mediocre picture and the lack of additional photos but perhaps I will make a video the next time I whip one up. Until then, I will do my very best to explain in detail, and I will include the link I used for a special trick with the corners and finishing off a blanket. 
~Reversible Baby Blanket~ {by crafty2thecore.com}
There are several ways to make a reversible blanket. Quite a few of the tutorials I read, said to sew the fabric inside out like you do when making a pillow. That's so much work! I love the look of the colored thread that stands out from serging so I made my blanket with the wrong sides together so I don't have to turn it inside out. Here are the directions for my version of the blanket with the link to the tutorials that I promised you.

Directions for reversible baby blanket:
1.  Decide on the size you want to make your blanket. The most popular shape is an over sized square. The ones you buy in the store are small and your baby outgrows them so quick. I believe the blanket I made was 32"x 32."

2.  Buy 2 yards of fabric (1 yard of each fabric you chose for both sides.) *Usually a yard is plenty. If you are confused on how much fabric to get, tell the worker helping you that you need it to be a perfect square and they can help confirm measurements. 

3.  You may prefer to wash the flannel before sewing to get shrinkage out of the way. At the end of the bolt where you find the width of your fabric, you will also find the requirements for washing that particular material. 

4.  Place the wrong sides of the fabric back to back. Sometimes they don't cut the fabric well or the fabric was put on the bolt a little crooked so I've had to adjust the angle of the fabric slightly and trim up the sides to match. Mostly this has been my experience with chevron prints.

*I have made a couple more blankets since this and I rounded the corners on a few. In #5 below I gave you instructions on regular corners. In #6 I gave you instructions for rounded corners.

*5Square or regular corner- In the blanket pictured above, I made a regular corner. I actually prefer them and once you practice and get the technique down, it's not hard. I used to dread corners but now they're actually fun! (When you finally get it right for the first time, you will probably scream out with excitement as I did.) 

With a serger you can not sew forward and then go over it backwards on the corners, as you can on a sewing machine. I watched  THIS VIDEO by a lady from witteybums.com to learn a cool trick for sewing corners. She also shows you can happen if you don't use the trick, along with how to finish off your the end of your blanket once your last two corners meet.

*6.  Rounded corner- Rounded corners are really popular right now and many prefer them and think they are easier. There are 2 easy ways to cut your corners. The picture below should help you as I explain it further.
(1) Place a cereal bowl on the edge of each of the four corners of the fabric and with a marker, trace around the outside of the bowl. You can use anything round to get the desired roundness of your corners but the line gives you an even guide when cutting off the excess with your scissors
(2) If you are using a rotary cutter (a much faster alternative to scissors that looks like a small pizza cutter), you must first fold your fabric exactly in half where the corners are matched up on both sides. (4 corners are really matched up because you have 2 pieces of fabric together.) You still use your rounded object on the corner for a guide but no marking is needed. Use your rotary cutter moving the blade around the outside edge of the bowl to trim off the edges. The best part is you are trimming two corners at the same time.

7.  Decide what stitch to use. I set my serger on the Wide Four Thread Overlock but you can use three thread. I just like to use the most threads I can when I know the item will be frequently washed.

8. Now it's time to serge around the outside edges and corners. Refer back to the previous video if you need to for the corners and finishing off the the blanket.

9.  I also took a threaded needle (with thread that wouldn't show) and went through the center a few times to help ensure that the middle of the blanket would not shift when it's washed. You could do it in several places throughout the blanket as well.

Well, I hope my instructions were helpful and detailed enough for you. Thanks as always, for stopping by. Please come again!
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