Monday, April 21, 2008

Spaceboy Turning Twenty Quilt

Hope you had a great weekend! Our was a lot of fun -- our son turned 2 and we celebrated all weekend. Pics and more info on that to come ...

In the meantime, I wanted to share another work in progress.

Three of my cousins' children all have birthdays coming up in May & June. This year, one of the boys is turning 3 and the other two are turning 1. We decided that each boy would get something homemade this year ... so I have embarked on a project I like to call "3 months, 3 boys, 3 birthdays, 3 quilts, oh cr*p!" OK, so that last part isn't so much part of the name as it is how I'm feeling right now!

The good news is that one of the quilt tops is done (above and below), another is very much in progress (blogged here), and the third is already all planned out with the fabric purchased and cut, just not pieced.

This first one follows the "Turning Twenty" pattern, as recommended by the teacher of our Beginning Quilting class as an easy quilt for a beginner. She had made a beautiful quilt from this pattern out of Amy Butler's Nigella fabrics and showed it off at one of our classes. It looked pretty easy, so I wanted to give it a try.

I picked out some Prints Charming fabric featuring rocketships and spaceboy themes ... suitable for a little boy, no? I remember reading about this line back in the fall and had been keeping my eyes and ears open for it to officially "launch" -- well, it must have come out to little or no fanfare, because I stumbled across a fat quarter bunch in an Etsy shop. This fabric is so nice -- both the patterns and the feel of the fabric -- that I'm really surprised there hasn't been more "buzz" around it.

Anyhow, I got some fat quarters and picked up some coordinating Kona Cotton solids at Joann's and cut and pieced the whole top in one weekend. It was extremely easy and I think the pattern is great for fabrics with large designs on them. I could see this becoming a "go to" pattern for a quick gift or to feature favorite fabrics.

The thing turned out to be a LOT larger than I was expecting. In fact, after finishing the blocks, I considered not using them all and making the top at least a row or two shorter in both directions. I'm afraid that even a 3-year old won't be able to even lift this thing once it's put together and quilted! But I decided to make it full size -- want to know why? Because having some leftover blocks would represent yet another unfinished project, and I wouldn't be able to rest until I bought more fabrics to complete it and figured out someone to give it to. So basically, I'm making the poor kid a humongo blanket because I didn't want to feel like I had "unfinished business"! Is that selfish of me?

I'm kind of intimidated to even try to quilt this thing, it's so big. And I haven't bought a backing yet. Any ideas?

So here's another completed top that's sitting folded up in my house. Are you sensing a pattern here? I love picking out the fabric, the pattern, cutting it up, piecing it all together ... but I get stuck at the basting part. It could be because I don't have a room big enough to lay everything out on the floor. Or it could be because of the 3 slipped discs in my back, and the fear of crawling around on the floor. Either way, I need to get over it or figure out an alternative ... my unfinished projects are creating a logjam!


  1. I remember crawling around on the floor pinning a quilt when hugely pregnant. NOT fun. Today's biggest problem with pinning is clearing away all the kids' cr*p off the floor first.

    I like the steel blue solid you have. What about a print of some sort in that color?

  2. I have two suggestions!(watch out what you ask for...) I like to use left over blocks on the back. I can then make a strip of them..and put a long piece either going vertical or horizontal. As long as you have that fabric, it keeps from having to buy so much more for a backing. OR you could use some of the blocks to make matching pillowcases. For backing ideas try ...She has an off center 4 patch back I like to use. Pieced, but QUICK. Priceless! Love the space fabs...

  3. I'm going to have to steal some ideas off Beth--she sounds like she has good ones!
    Love the boy colors--it can be hard to find uni-sex or boy fabrics. Love 'em

  4. No way in the world I would baste on the floor! If you have (or have access to) a couple of banquet tables, you're golden. Use binder clips to hold everything to the table top, unless you have enough tables where you can use tape. I baste all my quilts on my 36" square glass-topped table. Yup, there's a lot of shifting, but with careful clipping, I've not had any real problems. (My mom uses the banquet tables at her church -- any day the church quilters aren't there using them!)

  5. Check with your local quilt shop and find out if they have large tables. Some of them have a free day where you can call ahead and reserve them for a period of time to get your backing pinned together.

  6. I would like to know where you purchased the rocket ship fabric for your quilt - or if I can purchase it from you. Need rocket ship fabric in bright blues/reds!

    Thank you!
    Debbie McDonald

  7. Hi Debbie!

    I hope you check back here, because it doesn't seem that you have a "reply to" email address or a blog.

    I might have some scraps left and, if I do, I'd be happy to send them to you. I am afraid I don't have any left and, even if I do, it's not much.

    I originally bought mine in an etsy shop, beesquarefabrics ( Unfortunately, a quick search just showed me that they don't seem to have any left.

    SewMamaSew also had some, but they seem to be sold out, too.

    The designer of the line is Prints Charming ( and the line is called Two Young Street. A quick Google search might help you locate some online. In fact, I just saw that the Prints Charming site has a shop and it has some available!

    Good luck!

  8. Can you tell me how to get my hands on the turning twenty pattern? I'm just beginning, and it looks like something I can handle. I've searched online, and have come up empty...

    1. I just bought my Turning Twenty and "More Turning Twenty? " on Amazon

  9. When you try to baste this quilt together, purchase a cardboard cutting matt that we used to use to cut out dresses and such on. They come folded and you can unfold and set in on a counter or table or island in your kitchen if you have one. Baste with safety pins every 4" and do it in sections holding the quilt layers on with binder clips. As you quilt you can remove the safety pins as you get to them. One secret is to make sure your back in clamped on first very tightly. I learned this from Harriet Hargrave in a lecture. When you quilt do all the straight lines that go through the entire quilt first. Your kitchen or dining room table is a great place to lay it out. I also have 3 herniated discs and don't have a problem doing it this way.

  10. By the way the pattern is called Turning Twenty is by Tricia Cribbs and is available on Great pattern. Especially for scraps