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Thursday, October 31, 2013

Making Loveys

I've been in a blanket mood recently.  I wanted to try something I've seen online, but was a little nervous about trying it full size.  Solution?  Loveys!



A lovey (or blankie) is a small blanket perfect for babies and toddlers to sleep with, cuddle, drag around and refuse to let go in time for kindergarten.  I made these with cotton fabric on one side with minky on the other, all surrounded by a contrasting ruffle.

They were easy to make.  Decide on the size of lovey you want to make.  There is no uniform size for a lovey.  Mine are 18" x 21".  I wanted the lovey to fit a number of purposes - a doll or infant blanket, a small pet blanket or (mostly) a lovey to love.  I cut the two middle pieces 18 1/2" x 15" - one in cotton and one in minky.  


I wanted my ruffles to be about 2" wide finished, so I cut the contrasting fabric in two strips, each 5" wide x 36" long.  Those measurements assume 1/2" seams and 4" extra length for the ruffle.  

 

I hate taking pictures while I'm sewing, so while I describe the (easy) process, I'll intersperse the beautiful pictures taken by my friend Kate Eschbach (of Kate Eschbach Photography).


I began with the fun part - the ruffles.  I am estranged from my ruffler attachment and I did attempt a reconciliation for this project, but it just was not to be.  That left me with the old fashioned way.  First, sew the ends of the two strips together to form one long strip.  Fold in half and iron.


Using the longest stitch on your machine, sew long raw edges together with a 1/2" or less seam, leaving extra length of thread hanging after you cut it.  I would not recommend trying to ruffle the entire length at once - your thread will break (several times).  I only did about 12" or less at a time because I'm a ruffle weenie.  I also would go back after each section and sew the ruffles down with a normal length stitch instead of waiting until I ruffled the whole thing.  That doesn't leave a lot of room to adjust before you sew it to the main pieces, but as I said, I'm a ruffle weenie.


Once the long nightmare ruffle is done, take the 3 pieces - cotton rectangle, minky rectangle and long ruffle and make a sandwich lining up the edges - cotton rectangle, right side facing DOWN; ruffle with raw edge matching raw edges of the rectangles in the middle; and on the bottom, the minty with right side facing UP.  Sew a 1/2" (or deeper) seam, catching all three.  Sew all the way around the blanket. Be generous in gathering ruffles at the corners so you don't have to go tight around them.  Leave the last 4-5" on the side open so you can turn it inside out.



Turn the blanket inside out and hand-sew the remaining opening closed.  After I turned the blanket right side out, I went back and removes some of the visible extra threads on the finished product from the places where I initially sewed the ruffles.


And there you have it - easy, right?  (If this looks a little different than the other pictures, this is a second lovey I made.)  You can find both of these lovies for sale in my Etsy store, Pretty Pretty Cindy

You can't have too many loveys.