February 9, 2013

Strip Rag Quilt Sewing Tutorial

I’m on a roll with sewing tutorials. As always I have to put in my sewing post disclaimer:

My grandma taught me how to sew and then gave me her 1970s sewing machine but I’m no expert. If I can sew these you can too! Let me just warn you now that I may not use the correct sewing terminology but I tried to make up for it by adding lots of pictures.

Towards the end of my pregnancy with Delilah I couldn’t find a crib blanket that I loved. They were all baby pink with bears or the typical baby prints. I wanted something that said ‘Hey look at me – I’m bright, fun and gonna’ keep you warm baby!’ Okay so really I just wanted something unique but you get the point.

Rag Quilt Sewing Tutorial - Sewing for Baby

I started out by cutting all of my strips of fabric. Most standard crib blankets are 52x34 so I cut my strips to be 38 inches wide (because you are going to trim and fray the ends) and 5 inches wide. I am actually a huge dork and didn’t want to have two of the same prints touching so I drew out a diagram. If you go with 5 inch wide strips you will loose two inches (because they will be cut and frayed) and they will actually end up being 3 inches in which case you will need 17 strips total.

Rag Quilt Sewing Tutorial - Sewing for Baby

I made this blanket over a few days time and on the first day I spent most of my time cutting 17 strips of cotton fabric and 17 strips of flannel fabric.

Rag Quilt Sewing Tutorial - Sewing for Baby

Rag Quilt Sewing Tutorial - Sewing for Baby

Then when your ready to sew put the wrong sides of a piece of flannel and a piece of cotton together and sew around it one inch in. Once your finished you will have 17 flannel/cotton strips.

Rag Quilt Sewing Tutorial - Sewing for Baby

Rag Quilt Sewing Tutorial - Sewing for Baby

Rag Quilt Sewing Tutorial - Sewing for Baby

Using my diagram I started sewing my strips together in the order I wanted them to be. Putting the wrong sides (or flannel sides in my case) facing together and sewing along the same line that you already did one inch in to attach the strips together.

Rag Quilt Sewing Tutorial - Sewing for Baby

Rag Quilt Sewing Tutorial - Sewing for Baby

Then just keep adding to it the same way.

Rag Quilt Sewing Tutorial - Sewing for Baby

Rag Quilt Sewing Tutoria - Crib Blanket

In the picture below you can see what the top of the blanket (left) and the bottom part (right) should look like at this point.

Rag Quilt Sewing Tutoria - Crib Blanket

This is what it looked like when I finished sewing all the strips together, but even with my careful measuring some of the strips were different lengths.

Rag Quilt Sewing Tutoria - Crib Blanket

In order to fix that problem I trimmed the side and then sewed all around the perimeter of the blanket one last time.

Rag Quilt Sewing Tutoria - Crib Blanket

The final step is to use scissors to snip all of the raw edges in between the strips and all around the edges of the blanket. I snipped every 1/4-1/2 inch. This part is the most tedious so I did it on the couch while catching up on DVR shows. (It was nighttime so I don’t have a picture for this part). Then toss it in the washing machine and dryer by itself. The more you wash it the more frayed the edges get. I recommend doing it a minimum of two times and washing it alone for the first 3-4 times unless you want frayed fabric all over your other laundry.

I finished this in three days and LOVE it. It can get tedious at times but I was nesting so I was determined to get it finished for my little girl. PLUS it is way easier than a real quilt (which I will probably never attempt!)

Rag Quilt Sewing Tutoria - Crib Blanket

Enjoy,

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Fitted Crib Sheet Tutorial

9 comments:

  1. I did my first rag quilt last winter, I thought my hand would fall off after all that snipping, but it was worth it because it's gorgeous. So is yours!

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  2. What does the back look like?

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  3. So fun! I'd be thrilled if you'd share it here: http://www.oneartsymama.com/2013/02/shine-on-fridays-67-and-giveaway.html

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  4. Did you use cotton on front and flannel on the back? Ive always just used flannel but like the cotton patterns

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    1. Hey Debbie! Yes, I used cotton on the front and flannel on the back because I couldn't find any flannel prints that I really loved. I see Joann's has a ton of new fun flannel designs now though!

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  5. Hi Kelsey,
    I also make this blankie. Its so fun. To save a little time, you can omit the step of sewing the strips together. Just lay out strips in the pattern you want with back sides together. Then pick up two rows at a time and sew just as you did before. This way you are only sewing once. Then pick up the next row/strip pair and add to the other side of the strips you just sewed, etc. Hope that makes sense.

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  6. I agree, Jenny. That's what I do as well. =)
    Love the colors in this blanket!

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  7. Do you all use such a wide seam allowance? Is 5/8-3/4" good enough to keep things in place after rag trimming? Yes, I made that term up. Sorry guys.

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Your comments make me smile!