Our entire family is very blessed. We all have jobs, nice homes and cars. We, for the most part, can go out and buy what we need, and in most cases want. So when Christmas rolled around this year, I knew that I wanted to come up with something special for everyone…really put some thought into what I gave the person. In many cases, this meant I made something. In my series, A Very Crafty Christmas, I will highlight the gifts I made with step-by-step directions to help you make your own if you wanted to.
I made a rag quilt for my sister-in-law. I really don’t know what made me want to make her this particular item, I just wanted to make one and I knew she would appreciate it the most.
1 yd. each of several coordinating fabrics
Cutting wheel or fine scissors
1. I went to Joann’s and picked out four different blue and brown fabrics that coordinated and purchased about a yard each.
2. I used my cutting wheel and cut each fabric into as many 8″x8″ squares as I could get out of the yard. A cutting square would make this much, much easier. I also think I would make my square slightly smaller, although it’s going to mean more sewing.
Rather than following any form of direction, I assumed that I knew best, my mistake, and made a huge error here. I’m going to tell you what I did, but don’t follow this as any sort of step. I match up my pairs, sandwiched a piece of cotton batting between each layer, pinned them together and then sewed each square block together so they were completely together. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Don’t do that. This is a completely unnecessary step.
3. Pin each sandwiched layers together. Your insulation layer is completely up to you. I used cotton batting. With flannel, which I used, you probably don’t need any, or you can use another piece of flannel in the middle. My cotton worked fine, but it did bunch a bit when I washed it.
4. Lay out the fabric squares on the floor and create your pattern.
5. Sew each all of the squares in each row together using a 1/2″ or greater seam allowance. The greater the seam allowance the more the drama of the frayed edges between each square. Keep in mind all of the rag edges will be on one side of the quilt, the other will be patterned with no edges.
6. Sew each row together.
7. Cut small slits in all of the edges.
8. Wash the entire quilt and dry. This will fray the edges creating the unique look of a rag quilt.
9. Check all of the seams to make sure they held up in the wash and correct any of necessary.
A rag quilt was incredibly easy to make, even for someone like me. And I followed very few directions. Once I saw a picture of it, I knew exactly what I wanted to do and how to do it. Yes, I messed up a little, but that’s the beauty of a handmade gift. You can make this quilt in varying sizes and you could even use vinyl on the bottom to make it something that could be used as a picnic blanket.
If you don’t want to take my instructions, there are many other sites online that will provide with directions on how to make your own rag quilt. This, however, like any other handmade product is your own, so find a way to personalize it or at least add your own special touch to it.