August 26, 2008

Rag Quilting

So I've finally learned how to sew. This is my very first project so keep in mind that it is very amateur. I made a rag quilt which was so much easier than I thought it would be. And if I can do it, having never sewn anything before, then you certainly can too! Most of my instruction and information came from Love To Sew. If you have any questions you can refer to that website, email me, or leave a comment.

The following directions are for a 26" by 34" quilt, which is the size of most Pack 'n' Plays or portable cribs. To double the size of your quilt cut out twice as many squares. You can use nearly any kind of fabric, but from the research I've done flannel and/or cotton are the best choices. I used flannel because of how soft it is.
Materials Used
Rotary Blade
Rotary Mat
6" x 6" Omnigrid Square
Sewing Machine
About 4 1/2 yards of fabric
Scissors
Straight Pins

I used the Rotary Blade and Omnigrid to cut the fabric out on the Rotary Mat. Use whatever method works best for you. Before cutting out your fabric decide whether or not you want your squares to follow a repeated pattern. That way you don't waste fabric or time cutting out too many or not enough.

STEP 1-CUT OUT YOUR SQUARES
Cut out 48 six inch squares for the top of your quilt and 48 six inch squares for the bottom. This will give you a total of 96 six inch squares. I used Strawberry Shortcake patterned fabric for the top and solid pink for the bottom.

Note: Batting is completely optional. If you chose to use it, then cut out 48 four inch squares of batting. I didn't use batting on my quilt.

STEP 2-PIN YOUR LAYERS
If you're using batting put one square of it between 2 squares of fabric. If you aren't using batting then just put 2 squares of fabric together. Make sure the pretty sides of the fabric are facing out and pin the layers of squares together. You should have 48 layered squares. This makes 8 rows across the long side and 6 rows along the short side as pictured below.

STEP 3-SEW YOUR LAYERS TOGETHER

Sew from corner to corner of your square to make a / across the middle. Do the same thing from other corner to corner to make an X across your layered square as pictured below. DO THIS TO ALL OF YOUR LAYERED SQUARES. You should have 48 layered squares with an X sewn in the middle.

STEP 4-SEW YOUR SQUARES TOGETHER

Note: you will be working across the long side of you quilt, pinning squares together. If you work along the short side you will be creating more work for yourself.

Start by pinning 2 squares together. The larger your seam allowance the more your quilt will "rag". I used 3/4 inch seam allowance. The Love To Sew lady used 1 inch. Whatever size you use keep it consistent throughout each step. Sew the 2 squares together. Do this to all of your squares. You should have 24 sets of 2 squares sewn together (pictured below).

STEP 5-SEW YOUR SETS OF 2 TOGETHER
Pin 2 sets of your 2 squares together and sew down the seam to make a set of 4 squares sewn together. Do this to all of your 2 square sets. You should end up with 12 sets of 4 squares sewn together as pictured below.

Below: 12 sets of 4 squares

STEP 6-SEW YOUR SETS OF 4 TOGETHER
Pin 2 sets of 4 squares together and sew down the seam to make one long row of 8 squares. You should have 6 rows of 8 squares sewn together as pictured below.

Below is a closer picture of what the rows should look like.

STEP 7-SEW YOUR ROWS TOGETHER

Pin 2 rows of 8 together allowing for the same seam allowance as when you pinned the squares together. Be sure to match the seams in each row as closely as possible. Sew down the seam of your long row. You should have 3 sets of 2 rows sewn together as pictured below.

Below is a closer picture of what your seams will look like.

STEP 8-SEW YOUR SETS OF ROWS TOGETHER
Continue to sew your sets of rows together until you have completed sewing all rows.

STEP 9-SEW THE EDGES OF YOUR QUILT

Sew a 1 inch seam around the entire outside edge of your quilt.

STEP 10-CLIP YOUR SEAMS

Clip every single seam on your quilt. The smaller the clipping, the more ragged your quilt will look. Make sure you don't accidentally cut over where you've sewn. End your clipping just before your seam. Once you're done clipping your quilt is finished!



Wash your quilt in cold water and tumble dry low. I haven't washed mine yet, but from what I understand the ragged part gets softer and better looking after washing.

3 comments:

Jenny S said...

When you wash it the ragged edges do become softer. Giving such a wonderful look.I have made a couple of these.

The Call's said...

Karen made a few of these recently and something she did when mapping out the blanket, was take pictures of each fabric with her camera and loaded it onto the computer and used excel to put the pictures in the blocks. She was able to move it around and lay out her blanket that way instead of using the table or floor. I think this was a great idea! It saves you from keeping it on the table or floor and able to move around the fabric without having to move all the fabric.

suzannie & hubbie plus one said...

I love making these! Well, not since having Logan around... I just can't seem to find the time!