Friday, August 30, 2013

Terrain St. Louis Sixteen Baby Quilt

Isn’t it amazing how going on vacation can inspire and revitalize you? After a week away from home (and my sewing machine), I was fired up to sew, sew, sew! I wanted to work on something fun and easy, so I grabbed some Kate Spain fabric I had been hoarding and set to work, even though that meant ignoring my existing WIPs.

I started this blog in April 2011 to document and inspire my quilting journey, but I’ve also ended up using other online tools as well. After double-checking Pinterest and Evernote, I was able to piece together this quilt’s short, yet long, history:
  • Mid August 2011: I purchased a Terrain Jelly Roll and Bella Solids Terrain Iris yardage from Fat Quarter Shop for the top and binding, respectively.
  • Late October 2011: I purchased Terrain Mist Lichen yardage for the backing, also from Fat Quarter Shop.
  • November 2011-July 2013: The fabric sat unloved and neglected in my laundry room closet.
  • August 2013: I did some quick math and sketching, and completed the quilt in 16 days. (Hey! I made a St. Louis 16 Patch quilt in 16 days! How 'bout that.)

Why is it that I can finish one quilt in a little over two weeks, while another one takes me over two years just to finish the top? I have a few ideas:
  • Planning: I had a clear vision before I started and did not have to make any major design decisions on the fly.
  • Simplicity: The pattern I chose was simple and lent itself to strip piecing.
  • Preparation: I had everything I needed on hand before I made a single cut or sewed a single seam.
  • Energy: My vacation gave me the energy to make a strong start.
  • Inspiration: It kept me going even when I returned to my everyday life and its demands.
  • Focus: With the exception of a little bit of piecing for the backing of another quilt, I only worked on this quilt until it was done. No Zakka, no bags, just quilts.

At 48”x48”, this quilt is the perfect size for a baby quilt. So much so, that it has my sweet toddler’s seal of approval. She insisted on helping with the photo shoot, and assumed that the quilt was for her.

Lately, I’ve seen this pattern all over the blogosphere. Turns out there was an informal Instagram sew-along for St. Louis 16 patch quilts recently (#stlouis16patch). If you don’t have Instagram, there’s also a Flickr group. Be sure to check out all the other great versions of this quilt out there.


  1. It looks great! That's such a pretty line of fabric, isn't it?

    I made one of these about a year ago - never quilted it, the top has been sitting on a shelf waiting to be quilted all this time - but with sashing, when it was on the cover of Quilty magazine. I didn't read their pattern, so I don't know if my version matched up with theirs. I rather like it sashing free like you've made it, with all the colours/fabrics running up against one another.

  2. This is absolutely gorgeous! Love the idea of making it smaller for a baby quilt :-)

  3. This turned out SO nice! Terrain is still on of my favorite lines and I love seeing it again! So glad you had an awesome couple of weeks sewing!!

  4. Beautiful! I love the purple you chose for the back. This is also one of my favorite fabric collections.

  5. Beautiful quilt! Lovely colours.

  6. Sometimes a project just has to be made there and then, and this one was definitely worth ignoring those WIP's for!

  7. Sometimes they come together quickly and sometimes... not at all - I'm well aware of this fact. Great finish. I especially like the photo of your girl all twirled up in the quilt. Have a great weekend.

  8. taking time out for a simple, quick project can really refresh you and get your excitement going for those wips! works for me. =)

  9. Awesome quilt! The St. Louis 16 Patch is the selected block for Charlotte Modern Quilt Guild's block swap for September! I didn't know what it was until today. Love the sweet model too! I know you must be pleased to finish this lovely!

  10. What amazingly neat binding! Quilt looks fab, another one I'll have to add to my wish list :)