Unlike last year's resolution of keeping my cell phone by me at all times, which I have totally failed at, I actually kept the other one: start early on Christmas gifts. Back in April I started on a quilt for my in-laws, and finished it on time!
My inspiration was this Windmill Whimsy quilt from Film in the Fridge. I hunted around a bit and found a free pattern, which did all of the math for me... score. (Download it here.)
Enter the glorious revelation of pre-cut fabric: you can buy squares already cut, in a variety of coordinating fabrics! The fabric I used is called "California Girl", and I got it at the FatQuarterShop (totally drool-worthy link right there, watch out.) The background is Kona white.
I quilted it in a grid pattern and then washed it; I didn't pre-wash any of the fabric so that it would shrink and crinkle up.
I should mention that I'm now spoiled for life. The days of using Wal-mart fabric are over. I'm a fancy quilter with fancy tastes now. Pretty soon I'll have a room in my house just for quilting! Oh, whoops...