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Quilting with Panels

Check out my latest and most adorable "Giraffe & Friends" baby quilt. Seriously in love with the cute and cuddly animals throughout this low-hassle quilt. While I absolutely LOVE piecing a quilt together, there is something so fun about a panel. I found this gem at a local place (which I frequent) called "Our Generations Quilt Shop". The staff here are friendly, always willing to troubleshoot with you, and they have good quality products.

A panel is basically just a piece of fabric that is ready to go. It's more than just a pattern and often depicts a scene, or in this case, cute lovable animals. The great thing about panels is that you don't have to do any piecing in order to make it feel like a complete quilt. Of course you could if you wanted to! Add in borders, blocks, or anything else you would like to make the quilt your own.

I did choose, however, to add a small border around the panel to give it a little extra interest. For the quilting, I chose to keep it simple by outlining the boxes while getting more intricate around the focal point: the giraffes first kiss.

To make this panel even more efficient to make, I did machine binding. I'm relatively new to this world. I used to hand-bind all of my quilts which, if you've done that you know, is VERY time consuming.

I have been experimenting a bit. This time, I sewed the raw edge of the binding onto the back first, then flipped it around to stitch the folded end to the front. It turned out great! My only tiny complaint was that the little bit of loose fabric ended up on the top of the quilt. From now on, I'll be sewing onto the top of the quilt first so that the final stitching will be on the back. I've seen a lot of people using this method and can't wait to give it a whirl!

Overall, this quilt was super gratifying. It took about fifteen minutes to add the border allowing me to focus my attention on the quilting. I love the speckled fabric in this collection. It's soft and the perfect pallet for a gender neutral baby quilt. I can just picture bringing this to a baby shower where we don't know the gender yet!

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