18" Doll Sewing Patterns • Free Tutorials • Sewing with Kids

A Doll Quilt

A Doll Quilt

I have a confession: I am the only sewist in my family who has never sewn a quilt. I have sewn 2 twin sized quilt tops, but I have been extremely intimidated by the rest of the project. Plus I like things to be perfectly lined up and such. (stumbling block #1) As far as I can tell, no quilt has perfect points in all its piecework–mine certainly did not. This bothers me. Many people tell me that is how it is.  Buying the batting and backing was as far as I’ve ever gotten toward finishing the tops into actual quilts. [In my defense, I’ve been busy with 4 kids who were born within 6 years.] So there they sat, until they were donated to local sewing for charity groups. I love quilts and now that my kids are a bit older, I decided to go for it. But to start small. A sweet doll quilt for my daughter’s doll.

Just thought this design was quite cute and fast, so I thought it would be  nice to share. While browsing the internet for rag quilt inspiration, I came across a quilt on the Riley Blake blog. It called itself a disappearing  9 patch, which uses a nine patch block.  I decided to give it a whirl. It’s just a doll quilt after all. How much harm can it do me?

Here’s how I did it. Going against the advice given on several sites, I used 3 fabrics, not nine. Though I think 9 different prints looks great, I knew I wasn’t ready for that. I could see the quilt never getting done, because I would most likely pull out most of my stash and contemplate for hours which nine fabrics to choose. The interview process always takes me forever. (stumbling block #2)

To start, I cut 4  5 inch squares of two of the prints, and only one 5 inch square of the third print. Sewed them together into a 9 square block. Repeated for a second 9 square block.

9 square quilting block

Pressed all my seam allowances and then cut the block into four equal parts.

cut in half

in half again

Then rearranged them. It can be done randomly, which my daughter is trying to teach me to be okay with. I’m definitely not there. Here are some of the possibilities for placement.

one way

or another

I chose and sewed them together.

Added borders. I needed 2 pieces 20 inches long for the sides I made them 2 1/4 inches wide. For bottom and top I needed 17 inches wide, and again made them 2 1/4 inches wide.

contrasting border

For the backing I needed 23 1/4 inches by 17 inches.

Here it is: my first real quilt. Really small, first proper quilt.

disappearing nine square for doll

Since it’s only a doll quilt and I was pressed for time, I used some pre-made floral bias tape for the binding.

This one was done completely from my stash. To hand stitch the binding to the backside, I used this really cool hand sewing stitch called an Invisible (Ladder?) stitch–seemed fitting for a Disappearing nine Square quilt. A fellow sewing mama shared this link with me for a how to.

I also found an extremely helpful video tutorial, on Jay Bird  Quilts, which covered everything.  Really the only video/tutorial one would need–wish I had stumbled upon it before I started the quilt.

For the quilting, I think I got too bold. I wish I had just done straight stitching, such as stitching in the ditch. I had such grand intentions of making the back pretty, but soon realized it wasn’t as pretty as I imagined in my head. Too late and too many stitches to pick out to switch mid-way, so it is what it is 🙂

I had 2 squares from the 2nd nine square block left over, so I sewed them together, stuffed them, and created a throw pillow to match.

matching pillow

All in all this is a pretty quick project, especially if you’ve made quilts before and know what you’re doing. But it’s also very attainable for a quilt newbie, such as myself.


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