These nerdy quilts are the best gifts of 2013

December 26, 2013

(Erin Brown)

We're calling it: The top DIY gift for 2013 is the nerdy quilt. And thankfully, reddit has been helping creators and recipients show off the fruits of their sewing labors.

Erin Brown made this epic Super Mario Brothers quilt after seeing a similar one on the Internet earlier in the year. But unable to find a pattern, she designed her own version made of over 7,000 individual squares and fabric strips. You can really see the detail here:


(Erin Brown)

All of those seams took an awful lot of precision. "If I was off even 1/8" it really threw the finished measurements off," she explains. "1/8" over 89 seams can quickly add up and cause the blocks to be 3-4 inches too short." Brown made the quilt for her husband — and said keeping it secret was a challenge. "This was the most intense quilting project I've attempted, but I couldn't talk about it. Ask any quilter: We love sharing our quilts at any stage of development."

"But it's finished now," she explained. "I've been showing it off like an excited little kid, and I couldn't be happier at how it turned out, errors and all. "


(Erik Weitz)

Erik Weitz's girlfriend Sarah McCaskey planned a special surprise for her Doctor Who-loving daughter: A Tardis quilt. McCaskey had been hard at work on the quilt since October, "bit by bit at night when her daughter was asleep so it would be a surprise," Weitz said, and finished it just two nights before Christmas.

It was only McCaskey's second quilt, but her daughter loved it. "She used it to sleep under last night after watching the Doctor Who Christmas special with the family," Weitz said.


(Kyle Olsen)

Kyle Olsen's sister had already helped him design and paint his room to look like Minecraft — but had another surprise for Christmas: An 80-square queen size quilt that looks like a creeper. "It took my sister about 10 hours to make," Olsen said.

Did any Switch readers get an awesomely geeky quilt this holiday season?

Andrea Peterson covers technology policy for The Washington Post, with an emphasis on cybersecurity, consumer privacy, transparency, surveillance and open government.
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Brian Fung | December 26, 2013