Make your own soft baby blocks in under an hour with a Cricut Maker! Quick and easy to make, and a great gift for any new mom!
Earlier this week I shared a post on how to cut fabric with a Cricut Maker, and I used my Maker to cut squares out of some pretty floral fabrics. Today I’m going to show you what I made with those squares: adorable homemade soft baby blocks for our baby girl!
I really love using my Cricut Maker to cut fabric! The rotary blade is seriously amazing, cutting as it rolls just like a standard handheld rotary cutter, except it’s way smaller and machine-controlled, so it’s way more precise. It can turn within a quarter of an inch to cut through hundreds of different fabrics, which allows you to cut intricate shapes and patterns with accuracy that you can’t get with scissors.
It can even cut multiple layers at the same time, which is great if you’re making multiples of the same pattern, or if you want to fold your fabric and cut it out on the fold.
All you have to do is choose from hundreds of sewing patterns in the Cricut library (including Simplicity patterns and Riley Blake Designs patterns), then flawlessly mark your fabric and cut it with your Cricut Maker. And you get to do the fun part: sewing!
How To Make Your Own Soft Baby Blocks With A Cricut Maker
This is the pattern in Design Space that I used for this project. It makes four soft baby blocks with letters and numbers on each side of the cubes.
- Time spent doing stuff: 45 minutes
- Time spent waiting around: 10 minutes
- Total project time: 55 minutes
- Cricut Maker + the rotary blade that comes with it
- FabricGrip mat
- washable fabric pen for the Cricut Maker
- Cricut EasyPress2 and EasyPress mat
- weeding tool
- sewing machine
- six 12″x12″ pieces of fabric in coordinating colors (I used all 5 of the fabrics in the Sweet Prairie sampler plus one piece out of the Love Story sampler)
- white iron-on vinyl
Start by opening up the project in Design Space. Click the green Make It button to send the pattern to your machine.
On the Prepare Mats screen, make sure that the mat containing the letters and numbers is mirrored (toggle the “Mirror” switch on) because you will be cutting that mat out of iron-on, and iron-on always needs to be mirrored before cutting. All the other mats are fabric, which normally also need to be mirrored, but since the cuts are perfectly square in this pattern, it is fine to leave the Mirror switch turned off for the fabric mats.
Once the mats are ready, click the green Continue button to send the pattern to your machine. Make sure the material is set to “iron-on” for the mat with letters and numbers, and set to “cotton” for all the other mats. Then Design Space will walk you through the cutting part, just follow the on-screen instructions.
You’ll want to switch to the rotary blade and add the washable fabric pen in the accessory clamp before cutting the fabric mats. You can see more details about how to cut fabric with a Cricut Maker in this post.
Once the fabric and iron-on is all cut, weed away the background iron-on vinyl (leaving the letters and numbers on the plastic backing) and then cut apart all of the different letters, numbers, and shapes.
For applying iron-on to cotton fabric, set your EasyPress 2 to 315 degrees. Once it’s heated, pre-heat the fabric for five seconds. Then position the letters and numbers on the fabric squares and press with the EasyPress 2 for 30 seconds.
Flip the fabric over and press again from the back for 15 seconds, then peel away the plastic backing from the vinyl while it’s still warm to the touch. Once all of your fabric squares have a letter, number, or shape on them, you’re ready to start sewing!
Sew the squares into a cross shape with one arm that has two squares instead of just one. This is the basic starting shape for each block.
Then fold the center block in half diagonally (in the photo above, fold the “C” block diagonally), right sides together, so that block “1” is on top of block “3” and block “2” is on top of block “B”. Make 2 side seams of your cube by stitching along the edges of block 1+3 and 2+B (bottom edge of 3 lines up with right edge of 1; left edge of B lines up with top edge of 2).
Open up the fabric and fold block C in half diagonally again, the opposite way, and sew up the other 2 side seams. (This time the left edge of block 1 lines up with the bottom edge of block 2, and the right edge of block B lines up with the top edge of block 3.)
Once that is sewn you should have an open box with a floppy “lid” (block “A” in the photo above). Attach the lid to the box by sewing two edges of the lid to two sides of the box, leaving the third seam open. Turn the box inside out through the open seam, then stuff it full of batting.
When it’s as full as you want it, whipstitch or ladder stitch the opening closed by hand.
Repeat for the other three blocks and you’re done!
Give them to your baby and let her enjoy! Or wrap them up as a gift for a new mom in your life.
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How To Make Baby Softie Blocks
- washable Fabric Pen
- [EasyPress mat]
- weeding tool
- sewing machine
- 6 pieces 12"x12" fabric in coordinating colors
- 1 sheet iron on vinyl white
- coordinating thread
- pillow batting
- Start by opening up the project in Design Space. Click the green Make It button to send the pattern to your machine.
- Toggle the Mirror switch on for the iron on mats (but leave it off for the fabric mats.) Click the green Continue button.
- Set the material to "Cotton" for the fabric mats and "Iron On" for the iron on mats.
- Insert the washable Fabric Pen in the accessory clamp and the rotary blade in Clamp B.
- Place the fabric on the FabricGrip mat, printed side down, and roll it with the brayer to make sure it's stuck.
- Load the mat into the machine, then start the cut by pressing the flashing Go button. Repeat until all mats are cut.
- Carefully weed away the background iron on vinyl from all pieces using the weeder tool.
- Use the tweezers to remove the fabric pieces from the FabricGrip mat.
- Pre-heat your EasyPress according to the settings in the Cricut Heat Guide and position your letters on top of the fabric squares. Press the letters for 30 seconds, then flip the squares and press again.
- Sew the fabric squares together into a "t" shape.
- Then sew all of the edges together to form the squares into a box shape, leaving just one edge un-sewn so that you can stuff the block.
- Fill the block with batting until it's nice and full.
- Sew the last little bit closed by hand.
- Repeat for all of the blocks, and you're done!
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Disclosure: I received compensation from Cricut in exchange for my participation in this campaign, and my honest discussion of their products. But the Cricut Maker and, really, all Cricut products are seriously amazing and all opinions in this post are 100% my own. I would never write a post about something I didn’t think was useful or interesting for you guys, and Practically Functional will only publish sponsored posts for companies or products I love and believe in! 🙂
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Cricut. The opinions and text are all mine.
Laura Adema says
Can you use a regular iron to press the letters and numbers onto the fabric?
Jessi Wohlwend says
Yep you can! Just be sure to press down really hard and put a folded up towel underneath the fabric to give it a firm base to press against.
What size are the squares I don’t have the cutting machine but want to do it the old fashion way. HEHE
Jessi Wohlwend says
Haha! As long as you make all the squares the same size as each other you can make them any size you want, but for this project, my fabric squares were 5″ X 5″.