Disney Autograph Quilt
When I convinced Dustin to go to Disney World a couple years ago I wanted to do something to remember this trip by. I loved the idea of getting character autographs, but I didn’t just want a book full of names that would sit on the shelf. Cue Pinterest… I looked around and found some things that sparked my interest; I loved the idea of a picture mat signed by all the characters, but that seemed like it would be too hard to keep up with in the parks everyday. Then I saw it, a quilt, it was something useful and all I would have to do is carry around squares of fabric! I found a few examples with pictures, but no tutorials on what to do so I had to make it up as I went. Now I can sew a straight line, but I’m no master seamstress so don’t be discouraged.
I didn’t have an idea of how I wanted the quilt to look when finished at the time, so for the signatures I stuck with a white kona fabric cut into 8 1/2 inch squares. This allowed for 8 inches of signing room and 1/4 inch seems.
I made a “notebook” out of cardboard and used binder clips to hold the fabric squares. I cut the cardboard twice the length and the same width as the fabric to fold it over and give the characters a sturdy surface to sign on. It wasn’t the most beautiful solution, but it worked like a charm.
I used a black fabric marker made for writing on fabric and have been pleased with how it has held up over the past 2 years. I would stick to using a thick marker over a thin one, this will make the signature easier to read on the fabric and will also be much easier for the characters to hold and sign with. I would recommend using a fabric marker over a Sharpie for this, because all my research shows it will hold up better over time.
Using my “fabric notebook” seemed to be pretty easy for the characters to handle and usually got an additional reaction out of them from being something different. It was plenty big enough for them to hold and gave them plenty of room to write.
When it came time to make the quilt I decided to stick with classic Mickey in a red, yellow and black color scheme. I stuck with a basic square pattern, but you can get as elaborate as you want. There are plenty of quilt tutorials on Pinterest to get your wheels turning. I also needed one more white square to finish out the pattern so I embroidered the trip and year to add. You could also write on it with your fabric marker or stop by the front desk where those magical cast members give out buttons and get them to write it, they’re usually pretty creative and would make their day.
I assembled the entire quilt myself; making the quilt top and back, pinning the batting on and edging it. It was intimidating at first, but not impossible. I only sewed in the ditches of the fabric, so I guess it is more of a blanket than a quilt, but I was still proud of myself for a first try.
If you can sew a straight line, but don’t want to go through the hassle of making the whole thing yourself then do what I plan to do on round 2 of Disney quilt making. Make your quilt top in your desired pattern, assemble the quilt with the batting and back piece, and then drop it off at a local quilt shop and let them sew it together for you! The quilt shop in my town will sew it together and bind it for you for $.01/square inch! So you have a (semi)homemade souvenir that will last and bring so much more lasting joy than a book on the shelf!
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