Technically, this isn’t a quilt, since it’s not quilted. You can quilt it, if you want, but that takes the easy factor down a notch and takes the fast factor down a few notches. As an intermediate sewer, this took me about 4 hours to make.
5 total yards of flannel material
Scissors or a rotary cutter and rotary cutter mat
Ruler or yardstick OR 8.5 inch quilting square
Thread to match or complement the fabric
Sewing machine (preferably with walking foot)
Spring action scissors
Pins (optional, if you’re risky like me)
Click through the jump to get started.
Let’s talk about the flannel material. You’ll need five total yards of the material to make a blanket that’s 41 inches by47 inches, about the size of most throws. This uses 80 total squares. You can get 16 total squares with a decentish amount of scrap material per yard. It helps, when buying fabric for this project to keep this in mind. My quilt ended up with 5 and a quarter yards of material, since I bought an end bit, so mine actually has 84 total squares. I think a 5 square by 8 square quilt is a bit easier to plan than a 6 square by 7 square quilt, so it’s up to you what you want to do.
After you’ve gotten your material, cut out the squares. The easiest way to do this is with a rotary cutter and a rotary cutter mat, using an 8.5 inch quilting square. That’s a tad on the expensive side, though. You can cut out an 8.5 inch square of cardboard that does a fine job and use scissors if you need to do this on the cheap. I’m doing a lot of rag quilts for Christmas, so I went with the more expensive, but faster method myself.
Once you have all your squares cut out, lay them out on the floor in the way you want your quilt to look. Mine looked like this:
This might have been the longest part of the process, deciding how I wanted the squares to look.This is for a friend who graduates from college tomorrow- see the 8 in the middle? Nifty, if I do say so myself.
So, once you have all the squares laid out, pick them up and carefully stack them in order. The way I do it is to go from bottom to top, right to left, numbering each one so I have a nice neat stack of squares in th correct order like this:
This is the point in time where you’d make a “quilt sandwich” with 7 inch square batting pieces and sew an X in the middle of each square to quilt it, if you were quilting it. And if you want to make a nice thick quilt, go right ahead. But the method I use is time saving and makes a blanket that is plenty warm in the winter, but nice in the summer as well.
Okay, now for the fun part: time to sew.
First, sew columns with the squares, using a half inch seam.
Go ahead and let that seam hang out. Make sure, however, that all the seams are hanging out on the same side. I sewed more than a few seams backward and had to get out the handy seam ripper and do it all again.
Once you have all the squares sewn into columns, pin the first column to the second, sew this with a half inch seam. Then pin the second to the third and so forth. Again, make sure the seams are all hanging out on the same side.
Then sew all around the perimeter of the blanket using the handy half inch seam.
Once you have all that finished, it’ll sort of look like a blanket, but with all these seams hanging out. It’s funny, I took my blanket over to my mom’s to work on cutting the seams to rag the quilt, and my mom asked me a couple of times if I was SURE I didn’t want to sew a back onto the quilt, because the seams hanging out looked all funny. Yes, mom, I’m sure.
Get out your spring action scissors (technically not a necessity, but again, makes this go SO much faster and they’re only like $6, so they’re HIGHLY recommended) and cut the seams close to your stitching every quarter inch or so. Then take your blanket to a laundromat (to save wear and tear on your washer, since what you’re doing is fraying the flannel edges and you won’t believe the amount of strings and lint your blanket will make) and wash it and dry it. You’ll end up with a blanket that looks somewhat like this:
The cool thing about these is, the more you wash them, the softer and more frayed and fabulous it will become. And it’s easy peasy enough for a beginner seamstress, but also fast enough to be able to bang a few of them out in time for Christmas. AND, it looks good enough for people to be impressed at what you made them.
Enjoy sewing these!