If you have never made a quilt before, a rag quilt is a great place to start. Even if you are new to sewing, I promise that you can make a gorgeous blanket with this baby rag quilt tutorial!
I am going to walk you through the step by step process of how to make a rag quilt. If after you have read through the tutorial you still have questions, please feel free to contact me.
Unless you are asking questions about math, like how much fabric you will need to make “x” size of quilt. I stink at math. I have no idea how to figure out how much fabric you need for a queen size. . .or exactly how much of each fabric you should buy. . . or anything that involves numbers. Trust me, you do not want my help in the math department. I usually depend on the ladies at the fabric store for all those questions. 🙂
I know it seems a little crazy, but I find it very therapeutic to work on baby projects. My latest was making a rag quilt. Just finished it this weekend. I’ve always loved them and wondered how they were made. My friend Tracie (who is hopefully picking up her daughter from Korea this week), showed me how.
It’s really quite simple, but does involve a few steps. I worked up some rag quilt directions for you just in case you have a hankering to make a stinkin’ cute baby blanket. 🙂
-Flannel is the best fabric for rag quilts, because it frays the best.
-Cotton also works really well, it just doesn’t make seams that are quite as soft and fluffy. -Minky does not fray, so it isn’t the best choice for a rag quilt. You can use it on one side, but if you use it on both your seams won’t fray, they will just look sloppy. If you do decide to use it on one side, I’d recommend using flannel for the other side.
-If you use cotton or flannel, I recommend washing the fabric first. If you use minky, you don’t need to because it doesn’t shrink.
Hope that helps clear up confusion. 🙂
OK, are you ready to make a SUPER CUTE rag quilt?
Baby Rag Quilt Tutorial Part 1: Prepping Your Fabric
Supplies: (contains affiliate links)
-Flannel (See fabric tips below)
-Warm and Natural Batting
–Spring Loaded Scissors for clipping the seams (not required, but very handy)
– Sewing Machine
–Thread that matches your fabric
1-The first thing you need to do is pick a pattern for your quilt, then decided the size you want it to be. I cut up a bunch of little 1″ squares so I could arrange them in different patterns. I tried a few and liked this one the best:
It has 64 squares in it. I decided to cut my squares 5″. This will make a quilt that is 32×32″. You can use any size of squares that you want and make your quilt any size that you want. For this size, I used 1 1/4 yards of fabric for each side, so a total of 2 1/2 yards.
2-Next you will need to cut out all of your fabric squares. I used my rotary cutter, and I highly recommend that. You can cut them by hand, but it is very hard to get them all straight, so it is harder to sew it together. Refer to your pattern to know how many squares of each fabric you need to cut. (TIP: If you lay your pattern out on a piece of felt, it won’t slide around.)
3-Next you need to cut out your batting. I used warm and natural. It needs to be cut one inch smaller than the fabric squares. I cut my pieces 4 inches. Figured out that math all by myself thank you very much. 😉
Now that you have all your pieces ready, it’s time to start sewing!
Baby Rag Quilt Tutorial Part 2: Sewing Your Rag Quilt Together
4-Take your back fabric and place it right side down. Lay the batting on top of it. See how there is a 1/2″ border all the way around?
Now take a piece of your top fabric and lay it right side up on top of the batting. I just laid it crooked so you could see how all the layers go together.
5-Using a straight stitch, sew an x in the middle of the square. Make sure you don’t sew all the way to the corners. You want to leave about 1/2″ at each corner. Basically you are just sewing over where the batting is. It was hard to see on the dark fabric, so I switched out for my pink fabric. Sorry to confuse you. 🙂
6-After you have completed all of your squares, it is time to start sewing them together. Pay close attention to your pattern so you are sewing them together correctly!
Line up all of the edges and pin one side:
When you open it, it will look like this on the front:
9- Now it is time to sew your rows together. Yippee!
Take the first row and lay it right side down. Place the second row on top, right side up.
Match up all the seams and pin them together:
Then place pins in between the seams:
Now sew down the side, using a 1/2″ seam. Sometimes it is a little tricky getting it even. I had to kind of push the top fabric through so that it wouldn’t bunch at the seams.
Keep pinning and sewing until you have them all sewn together.
Baby Rag Quilt Tutorial Part 3: Finishing Off Your Rag Quilt
11-When all of your pieces are stitched together , you will need to sew around the edge of the quilt. Sew a straight stitch all the way around the edge, using a 1/2″ seam.
12-Now it’s time to clip those seams! Put in a movie, because this part takes awhile. 😉 You will need really sharp scissors. Just go around the entire quilt, clipping every seam. I made cuts about 1/2″ apart. You want to get close to the thread, but MAKE SURE YOU DON’T CUT IT!
13-Clip off all of the loose threads on the back and front of the quilt.
We are getting soooo close:
14-Your rag quilt looks pretty great at this point, but to really fluff up those seams, you need to wash and dry it. I did mine in cold water on the permanent press cycle, then dried it on high heat. When it comes out, voila:
If you love the rag quilt look as much as I do, you might want to check out my Rag Quilt Baby Bibs. Super easy and super cute!