Indian Summer FREE Baby Quilt Pattern

indian-summer-free-quilt-pattern

Or better titled, "My love affair with half square triangles continues."

My favorite way to make half square triangles is the 8 at a time method. If you don't know what that is, check out this blog post about HSTs and the three different ways to make them.​

I'm not one to be too persnickety about  squares being perfectly square, but this ruler does help those unruly edges that start to look more like rhombuses than squares. It also allows you to slice off those pesky dog ears with one swipe of the rotary cutter.

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​Before finalizing the name Indian Summer, I did about an hour of research on the etymology of the phrase because...to tell you the truth, I wasn't 100% sure...hmmm...I'm just going to come out and say it. I wasn't totally sure it was PC...meaning, I needed to type into Google – "Is "Indian Summer" racist?" before feeling confident that I could use the name as a quilt design. 

After reading multiple forums and articles on the "history" of the phrase (I put "history" in quotes because there is some disagreement as to its true origin) I finally did conclude that an Indian Summer, no matter it's agreed upon origin, is a pleasant and positive term for a specific type of weather.

The definition most commonly known is "a spell of warm, dry, hazy weather after the first frost happening anywhere from mid-September to early December."

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Scottish botanist, John Bradbury, noted for his travels in the US in the early 19th Century, is quoted saying this about the phenomenal Indian Summer weather pattern –

The air is perfectly quiescent and all is stillness, as if Nature, after her exertions during the Summer, were now at rest.

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​With that quote in mind, the more I read about Indian Summers, the more I began finding its defining characteristics correlating with the mood and look of my quilt – a certain quietude in nature; stillness in the air; a morning chill followed by the warmth of the afternoon sunshine. These were all experiences, memories and feelings I think of when looking at the subtle negative space and the comforting juxtaposition of cool blues, grays and lavender with the glowing warmth of peaches, pinks and browns. 

This quilt pattern can be made using different colors​ and prints, but there is something really special about these specific colors together and the simple, unassuming look they achieve as solid fabrics. If you are interested in remaking this exact quilt, Fabricworm is currently selling quilt kits. The kit includes enough fabric to make a 36" x 51" crib quilt.

The solid fabrics used in this design and included in the kit are Birch Fabrics solid poplin:​ Shell, Peachy, Timber, Petal, Mineral, Periwinkle, Shroom, Slate and Cream. The backing and batting are not included in the kit, but to stay in line with the look of my quilt, use Pop Dots Stormy 100% organic cotton and Warm & Natural 100% Cotton batting.

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Here is a link to the FREE PDF pattern for the baby quilt. The throw quilt pattern is only $7 in the shop!​

​I'll end this post with one last quote from a letter written by Frenchman, St. John de Crevecoeur, dated January, 1778. When making your own Indian Summer, think of this description...

- Sometimes the rain is followed by an interval of calm and warmth which is called the Indian summer; its characteristics are a tranquil atmosphere and general smokiness.

suzy-quilts-indian-summer

Suzy Quilts

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31 thoughts on “Indian Summer FREE Baby Quilt Pattern

  1. Janelle says:

    What a beautiful quilt, and thank you for the pattern! Did you have to bury a lot of threads with that quilting pattern?

    I also have been worried that the use of the term “Indian Summer” is racist, so I asked a First Nations colleague of mine and she said no, it’s a lovely term.

  2. Phyllis Prom says:

    Thank you so much for the pattern, it is very calming just like the feel of an Indian Summer, when one sweeps over you, you will remember the day, where you were and who you were with. It is such a wonderful and unforgettable experience. We were building a home on a hill and my husband, myself and his sister were standing on the flooring, which was all there was built at the time, we were looking over the piece of land we had bought and this very calm quiet came over us then a little warm breeze, my sister-in-law said oh, that was an Indian Summer Breeze, it is something I have not felt since then. I was 23 at that time and I am now 73. Again, thank you for the pattern. Phyllis

  3. Becky says:

    Great quilt. Love the quilting. Am thinking I would like to make this using fall colors since it is an “Indian Summer”. However, I can’t for the life of me, get the pattern.

  4. Suzanne says:

    I really love this pattern. I’m just learning to quilt on my regular sewing machine, and I’m wondering what other type of quilting pattern could be used with this top – something where I wouldn’t have to start and stop too much? Thanks.

  5. Jenna says:

    This is a gorgeous pattern. Would you mind sharing – how long did this take you? I have a week free but the baby shower is in a week, and I’d like to make this as a baby blanket. Don’t want to be unrealistic if I can’t create this in time.

    • Suzy says:

      I’m not a great person to ask since I have some “unhealthy” OCD tendencies when it comes to making quilts. lol! But, I vividly remember not rushing through this or spastically obsessing and I still made the quilt top in 2 days and then finished the quilt a couple days after that. It’s a really simple and straightforward pattern. Good luck!

      • Jenna says:

        Hi Suzy,

        I started putting this quilt together and noticed a possible problem with some of the math in the pattern. You have the short rectangles listed at 3.5×6.5, but in order to line up with two of the 3.5 squares, they actually need to be 7″ wide. To the same extent, the longer 3.5×12.5 pieces need to be 14″ wide in order to line up with 4 of the 3.5 squares.

        Am I doing something wrong I will see later down the line as I piece this together, or, is the math wrong on the pattern? Thanks.

        Jenna

        • Suzy says:

          Once you sew the 3 1/2″ squares together, you will lose a 1/2″ in the seam allowance making the double square unit 3 1/2″ x 6 1/2″. Let me know if you start sewing and run into any other questions.

          • Jenna says:

            It all ended up working out perfect. In fact, I was so in love with what I did that I am doing another one this month!

  6. Wilma says:

    Thank you for the gift. I am First Nations and thought it was so respectful of you to think about whether the name of the guilt was PC. I also appreciated your efforts to research the history of the phrase. It is really the word ‘Indian’ that we have issues with because that was how we were mislabeled as for so long. The definition you found is so beautiful and just like your quilt.. Hopefully I will be able to make one such as nice.

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  8. Emily says:

    Hi Suzy! I bought the quilt kit from Fabric Worm as well as the square you recommended. As a newbie quilter, I assumed the square would be the guide for cutting the squares, but that’s not right, is it? Can you help me figure out what the 6.5 inch square is for when the cut squares are 7.75? Thanks so much!

    • Suzy Quilts says:

      Hey E,

      Great question! When cutting fabric to be pieced, I recommend a long ruler, like this one. I made a quick video about cutting fabric that you can find here – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ff9S7Tx3Sw (disclaimer, it’s terrible quality. lol!)

      Even when cutting those initial 7 3/4″ squares, use your long ruler. The smaller square ruler I linked to above is used to trim and square up the Half Square Triangle blocks once they are pieced together. The 6 1/2″ square ruler is a great “first ruler” because it’s small enough to be helpful in trimming 6 1/2″ HSTs and smaller. It was my first square ruler purchase and I use it all the time.

      If you don’t mind making lots of ruler purchases (pointing to myself), you could purchase a 3 1/2″ square ruler for trimming the HSTs since that is the exact unfinished size. Does that make sense? Shoot me an email if you’re still feel confused – suzy@suzyquilts.com. xo

      • Emily says:

        Suzy,

        Thank you SO MUCH for the reply! The video was so helpful! I went down a rabbit hole and watched all the videos you’ve made. They are so helpful and enjoyable! Thank you! You’re the best! I can’t wait to dive in!

        Thanks again! xo

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  10. Marlyn Derkacz says:

    Hi Suzy:
    Just discovered your website. It’s well oraganized with loads of useful info. I would like to purchase the Indian summer pattern, but before I do, do you have any addition info on how to make it bigger than 48 x 54.? I would like to make it closer to a twin size. Love the triangle jitters quilt also which has a cheat sheet included with the pattern to make larger size. Thanks Marlyn

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