100 Quilts for Kids: Double Dog Dare Quilt (and a fabric giveaway!)

It wasn’t until a couple years ago that I realized the vast worlds of difference between quilters and apparel sewists. I was new in the DC area and was invited to a fabric swap at my new friend Katie‘s home. I was excited to be included with a group of like-hobbied women, and gathered up a bag of some of my favorite chunks of fabric to share. Most was home decor fabric, but I also had a few half-yards of knit jersey and maybe a couple scraps of satin and lace.

When everyone started breaking out their scraps and filling the table, I was awakened to a new world of fabric. These cute quilters were lovingly placing three-inch squares of brightly-colored prints into gradient order. There were a hundred different quilting fabrics, and everyone (except for me!) seemed to know who had designed them (uh…people design fabric…?), what year they had been released (um…released…?), and which of the five most recent quilt they had been woven into. I left the knit and satin in the bag, and my home decor pieces took up about a quarter of the table, at around a half-yard each.

I had a delightful time choosing some bits and pieces that I figured I could use for appliques or bow ties for my then-baby boy. Katie was a kind host and feigned interest in one of my fabrics (I think so I wouldn’t feel so out-of-place), mentioning she’d been needing a new pillow. I listened with curiosity as new quilt patterns were discussed. I had never made a quilt. Never even thought about it. So, I decided I should give it a try! A few weeks later, I was invited to Katie’s house again, this time for a quilting night. I came prepared with some fabric and this zig zag quilt pattern in mind, and spent a couple hours cutting and stitching squares. Then, I put the pieces into a bag for later. And never took them out again! In fact, the bag is still sitting in my sewing closet…way down on the low priority shelf!

There is something that intimidates me about quilting.

Maybe its that I think it takes too long?  I’m sort of a nap-time seamstress, and more than a couple days on one project begins to wear me out.

Maybe I’m afraid of sewing straight lines? I’m comfortable with the round and three-dimensionality of garment construction, not so much with the squareness of blocks.

Maybe I don’t trust my instinct now that I know there is such a vast quilting world? I could be a little bit afraid of doing it wrong. 

Last year, when I read about Katie hosting the second annual 100 Quilts for Kids charity drive on her delightful blog Swim, Bike, Quilt, I wanted to participate. Unfortunately, the dates fell right within my busy custom Halloween costume season, and I wasn’t able to make time. I did, however get inspired to make my very first quilt as a Christmas gift for my second baby boy. The simple, strip-quilt format was something I could wrap my head around, and I am still thrilled with how it turned out. We use it every day.

When I heard it was time for 100 Quilts for Kids again this year, I committed to get over my quilting reservations and make a quilt for charity.

The only way I could get going on this quilt was to set aside all of my ideas about which fabrics from which lines I ought to use, and how the quilt should be constructed. I had to let go of my fear of doing it wrong, and just do it. I raided my stash of fabric (now a little more replete with quilting cottons) trying to pull together both some more current, novelty prints (most from Raspberry Creek Fabric), some bright solids, and a couple older favorites. I cut them all into squared-off strips and blocks, then settled down with my machine and began randomly piecing them together.

Luckily, sometime in the last year, Katie taught me about squaring off edges before adding to them, so I was able to build semi-straight sections. After I built a block (well, more like a grouping) that felt complete, I put it aside and worked on another. After four or five, I began laying them out on top of the striped cotton shirting that I had chosen for the quilt back. I had already cut it to 44″ x 44″, and now could arrange the blocks and fill in the holes. I built the design based on colors and balance, adding and moving as I felt it improved on the whole. The process was really fun and free, and I felt confident with the result.

I finished the quilt top around 10 pm, and double-dog-dared myself to sandwich and bind it before bed. After sandwiching and pinning the layers all of the sudden I remembered something: I needed to QUILT the quilt! Haha, sort of an important step, right? I briefly considered experimenting with free-motion quilting. Then I got real and busted out my new walking foot (I’ll save that craziness for another day!) I used the cardboard tube from a bolt of chiffon to draw a straight line from corner to corner, and then added lines on either side until it was finished. Are the lines all completely straight? No. Is that okay? Yes. Like with my first quilt, I bound the edges with double-fold bias tape rather than single fold. This time I didn’t unpick it, but just went with it. Old habits die hard, I guess. Next time I’ll remember…

After a wash and dry (and an official trial by Milo), the Double Dog Dare Quilt was officially finished. The process of making this quilt was such a wonderful creative experience (even though it was quick!) and I feel a little attached to it. Something about letting myself just be myself, even though I was making a quilt, was really cool. The chance to give it away only sweetens the experience. I hope whoever receives it will enjoy it’s boldness, and delight in it’s warmth.

To celebrate the amazing opportunity that 100 Quilts for Kids provides for us to step outside of our comfort zone and share little pieces of ourselves with others, One Little Minute Sponsor Diana at Raspberry Creek Fabric is offering an awesome giveaway today! One winner will receive TWO half-yard bundles of the darling aqua, grey and, orange Flea Market Fancy. Why two of the same bundle? One for you to keep, and one to give away! I would love to see the winner use the second bundle to make a quilt for charity:)

I am trying out a rafflecopter giveway today, so bear with me if it seems different. To enter, simply click below on the Rafflecopter widget. The only required step is to leave a comment mentioning what you will do with the extra bundle. There are additional entries allowed, but not required. The giveaway ends on Thursday, and I’ll announce a winner Friday.

Because the giveaway will be managed this way, feel free to use the comment section for feedback and questions. I’ll be happy to respond, as usual!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Alisha
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 1:18 am | Permalink

    Your quilt turned out great! If I won, I’d give the second bundle to my little sister, who is just starting to sew!

  2. Posted August 27, 2012 at 4:36 am | Permalink

    Make more beautiul things, especially baby items like bibs, burp cloths etc

  3. Posted August 27, 2012 at 7:10 am | Permalink

    share with a friend


  4. Jessica
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 7:36 am | Permalink

    I LOVE this idea. I am an avid quilter & would love to get involved with something like this. I’d use one bundle to make a quilt for a great cause like you did, & the other to make one for my dear friend who just found out she is pregnant with her first baby!

  5. courtney
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 9:02 am | Permalink

    I am really new to sewing, so I would give the fabric to my friend, who I have forced to become my sewing teacher 🙂

  6. Posted August 27, 2012 at 10:10 am | Permalink

    Thanks for sharing your story and welcome to the world of quilting! The finished quilt turned out wonderful and it’s nice that you enjoyed yourself making it. If I win..a quilt will be born.

  7. emily
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 10:35 am | Permalink

    So fun! I used to be intimidated by quilting, too, until I realized there really is no “wrong” way to quilt. One quilt I made for my daughter was a bunch of appliqued poppies…no squares or straight lines involved (WIN!). You can kind of see it here: http://lil-mil.blogspot.com/2009/02/6-weekthday.html

    If I luck out and win the fabric bundles, they’ll both be put to good use for some blankets and matching burp rags! One for a dear friend having a baby this fall and another to donate to the local hospital where I know they’ll be given to a needy mama.

    • Miranda
      Posted August 27, 2012 at 3:04 pm | Permalink

      Okay–that poppy quilt is absolutely adorable! Way to think outside of the box…literally! And what a precious babe. Good luck! xo

  8. denise
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 10:49 am | Permalink

    What an AWESOME giveaway….THANK YOU! I will make a quilt for my 12th grandchild coming soon and then another for a friend!

  9. Posted August 27, 2012 at 11:20 am | Permalink

    your quilt is great! I tried to leave a come on rafflecopter but couldn’t get it to work. 🙁 If I won the fq~I would make a charity quilt with it!

    • Miranda
      Posted August 27, 2012 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

      Hi Pat! That is a little confusing, right? You actually just comment here in the comment thread, then check the box acknowledging that you did it. It took me a couple times to figure that out. So, you’ve entered correctly! Good luck!

  10. Posted August 27, 2012 at 11:21 am | Permalink


  11. julie
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 11:32 am | Permalink

    I would use the extra bundle to make bibs and hurl cloths and give away as baby gifts to the many people I know that have babies and are having babies

  12. Katie
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 11:35 am | Permalink

    If I won this bundle of super cute fabric I would try to make my first quilt. I have been contemplating making one, but need more fabric to get started.

  13. Faye
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 11:37 am | Permalink

    Well, with a 1/2 yard bundle there will really be enough to make a quilt with the second bundle, so I will commit to making a quilt for charity if I win this generous giveaway. Thank you for the chance!

  14. susan.jonsson
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 11:40 am | Permalink

    You have inspired me….I would make a charity quilt.

  15. Gill
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

    Great giveaway!
    I’d use the second bundle to make another charity quilt for ‘Siblings Together’

  16. Jen
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

    I would definately make a quilt for our local Ronald McDonald house! One of the girls I work with unfortunately needed their services and they were amazing!! this is a perfect opportunity to help them out!

  17. Forrest
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

    Make a quilt for my future niece who will be born soon!

  18. Beulah
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 1:13 pm | Permalink

    I am in the early stages of creating quilts for a new childrens home/ranch in Florida. A loving environment for at risk youth and children in foster care the major sponser is the church I grew up in years ago when I lived in Florida. Each child will have their own bedroom! How awesome is that?! My dream is to be able to give each child a quilt of their own to keep even after their time at the childrens ranch/home is done.

  19. Aliza
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 1:24 pm | Permalink

    Hi. As I am also a beginner, and teaching myself via internet, I will use the second piece to make a give away quilt. maybe a baby quilt or a quilted pillow or something small. thank you very much.

  20. diane
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

    Such nice fabrics! I’d for sure use the extra bundle for a charity quilt.

  21. Kim
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for the inspiring post and for the generous giveaway! I would use the extra fabric to make a charity quilt.

  22. Posted August 27, 2012 at 2:25 pm | Permalink

    I would love to use that fabric for the back of a quilt I’m working on. Love your blog by the way! =)

    • Miranda
      Posted August 27, 2012 at 3:01 pm | Permalink

      Thanks Lyanna! Your most recent blocks are darling! I’m super tempted by the wonky chevron…so cool!

  23. Abbey
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

    I would give it to my mother in law who makes fabulous things from nothing!

  24. Posted August 27, 2012 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

    Darling quilt! I would give the second bundle to my bestie, Katie, who just had a darling little baby girl. Then we could sew something together for her baby Alice, and my new addition Mabel, due to arrive in 5 weeks.

  25. Posted August 27, 2012 at 3:12 pm | Permalink

    I would love to try quilting! My first niece or nephew is due in December so I think that’d give me enough time to finish it!

  26. Lisa Marie
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

    I would be thrilled to have an extra bundle to give to my best quilting buddy. We might even set a time frame and both use the bundles to make a quilt and see how alike or different they would be.

  27. Megan
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 3:35 pm | Permalink

    I really like to quilt! I would use one bundle to make a quilt for my little nephew for Christmas, and would use the other bundle to donate to the Colorado Children’s hospital.

  28. Katie H.
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 3:51 pm | Permalink

    I would make a quilt for my best friend, who will be having a sweet little boy soon!

  29. Posted August 27, 2012 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

    I would either give it to a friend so we could sew a quilt together, or make a quilt for charity, maybe for an Armed Forces group.

  30. Posted August 27, 2012 at 7:40 pm | Permalink

    Your quilt is a beautiful thing. I think whoever receives your lovely sewn goodness will be thrilled 🙂 If I win your generous giveaway, I would make something for the charity our guild is sewing for. I’ve made one quilt for charity so far and would love the chance to make another.

  31. maureen
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 7:52 pm | Permalink

    I would offer my bonus bundle to my quilt group to use for one of their nursing home lap quilts.

  32. Posted August 27, 2012 at 8:00 pm | Permalink

    I would make another quilt for 100 quilts for kids, for sure.

  33. Katie Y.
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 8:14 pm | Permalink

    If I won the 1/2 yard bundles (which would make me jump up and down with excitement!), I would use the 2nd bundle to make a baby quilt. I’m only comfortable making small quilts right now, and I like to make them to keep for the right occasion. I would probably make one to donate to my church’s “Whale of a Sale” that they sponsor to raise money. Thanks for the fabulous giveaway! 🙂

  34. Renee R
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 8:31 pm | Permalink

    I haven’t really made anything for my baby coming in Jan, a quilt would be perfect for our little winter baby. With the 2nd bundle I’d make another quilt for my niece.

  35. kathy
    Posted August 27, 2012 at 9:09 pm | Permalink

    I would definitely make a quilt for a child in need. Beautiful fabric!

  36. Posted August 27, 2012 at 9:49 pm | Permalink

    I’d give it to my friend who is expected her first nugget and already on maternity leave (So, she has plenty of sewing time!).

  37. Posted August 28, 2012 at 1:25 am | Permalink

    I would definitely use the second bundle to make a quilt, we were working on 10 quilts for charity by the end of October, but having achieved the target early we are now working on another lot of 10! we could really do with some more fabric. If anyone doesn’t know who to give their charity quilts, please let me know or have a look at natilittlethings.blogspot.com
    Thanks for the chance to win!

    • Miranda
      Posted August 28, 2012 at 2:29 am | Permalink

      Woah! You are quilting up a storm! What awesome projects. Good luck!

  38. Heidi
    Posted August 28, 2012 at 9:35 am | Permalink

    I’d try and make a quilt!

  39. Posted August 28, 2012 at 10:54 am | Permalink

    Good for you for trying something new! Kinda funny, I am intimidated by garment sewing. I have made a few simple skirts and some jammie bottoms but that is about it for me. I am daring myself to try a dress (Simplicity 3835)…we will see! If I am the lucky winner I would happily make a quilt for charity with part of my bundle. The other bundle would go to my bestie (she taught me to sew 4 years ago).
    Thanks for the chance! Smiles~Beth

  40. Kristie
    Posted August 28, 2012 at 11:24 am | Permalink

    I have been wanting to try quilting. And this would be perfect. I would love to make two quilts, to give away. To newborns in the hospital, or find a foster group that needs a quilt, something to brighten someone else’s day.

  41. Amie
    Posted August 28, 2012 at 11:55 am | Permalink

    My sister-in-law and I are both wanting to learn to be better sewers. I would give one fabric bundle to her and I would keep one and then we could get together and make something wonderful! Thanks for the great giveaway!

  42. Megan Whited
    Posted August 28, 2012 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

    I would make a small quilt with one bundle and give the other bundle to a budding quilter in my local quilt group.

  43. Posted August 28, 2012 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

    As a new member of the DC Modern Quilt Guild, I would love to make a(nother – I’ve made 2 already) quilt for 100 Quilts for Kids. I need to start a new one for our next meeting, so this would be perfect. Thanks!

  44. Makaela
    Posted August 28, 2012 at 5:36 pm | Permalink

    I would love to use the fabric for my mini quilts I am going to make for Christmas, I am just learning to sew.

  45. Posted August 28, 2012 at 6:11 pm | Permalink

    Love you quilt! Fantastic job!!! Thanks for sharing and thanks for the giveaway!!

  46. Posted August 28, 2012 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

    I usually make dinner napkins or bows and buttons.

  47. Margaret
    Posted August 28, 2012 at 8:10 pm | Permalink

    With the extra bundle I’d make a quilt to donate to a charity for kids, just like 100 Quilts for Kids.

  48. Posted August 28, 2012 at 8:32 pm | Permalink

    I’d definitely use the second pack to make a quilt for charity, and maybe even the first! Most of the quilt I make go to our church’s quilt ministry – a great way to be able to make all the quilts I want to!! Thanks for the chance to win!

  49. Barbara
    Posted August 29, 2012 at 2:14 am | Permalink

    I’d like to make something for a friend going through chemo. She gets really cold, so maybe a lap quilt

  50. M
    Posted August 29, 2012 at 5:43 am | Permalink

    I dont really know how to quilt…so I would give it away!:)

  51. rachele
    Posted August 29, 2012 at 8:28 am | Permalink

    I would have to give it to a friend who is a quilter so she could teach me her ways!

  52. euphoria
    Posted August 29, 2012 at 10:28 am | Permalink

    WOW- how very generous! I love 100 Quilts for Kids!!! I made one this year, and hope to make at least two more, so that I what I would do with this sweet fabric bundle!!!

  53. Linda
    Posted August 29, 2012 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

    I would make a quilt for my best friend who just had a darling baby girl on Monday.

  54. Beverly
    Posted August 29, 2012 at 4:53 pm | Permalink

    I think your quilt turned out beautifully! I am in the midst of making my first “quilt”. I learned to sew as a girl, but for various reasons, didn’t sew for many years. I recently started again and remembered how much I enjoy it! I have made many things for my daughter (age 12), but it’s harder to find things to make that my son (age 15) would enjoy. I asked him what I could make for him and he requested a quilt based on his favorite video game. He and I designed it together and I am still working on it. I am hoping to finish it this weekend!

  55. steph
    Posted August 29, 2012 at 9:35 pm | Permalink

    make a mug rug!

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