This is a tutorial for how to make a strip quilt, or a diy rag quilt (whatever you prefer to call it). Be sure to read through the entire tutorial as I made some mistakes along the way and documented them for you.
Scissors, preferably spring loaded ones
Once you have your fabric washed and ironed, line up the raw edges and smooth the fabric out onto the mat. Line your ruler up on the raw edge (not shown) and cut a straight line as close to the edge as possible. This is already done in the photo below, but you can see that the ruler is sitting on a very straight edge.
Then, line your ruler up on the new edge and cut the next strip. I was cutting my strips the width of the ruler, which is 6.5″. If your squares are going to be larger than 6″ between sewn edges, you don’t use the strip method.
Continue cutting strips until you have all you want or you run out of fabric. I was just cutting strips on this day.
Once you have all of your strips cut, choose which fabric will be the front and which will be the back and arrange them like I have below. This is where you will see my first mistake, which I didn’t notice until much later. I number the pieces to try and make it easier to explain….
Once your pieces are all sewn, you will cut and reverse the strips (you will see this below), so you need to use an even number of strips, and you need to make sure that you don’t get the same fabric lining up together. So, #6 will be under #1, #5 will be under #2 (do you see the problem?), #4 will be under #3. Obviously, I forgot to do this simple step, so I fixed it later on.
Now pin your strips together.
Here you see the strips are all pinned together, with the raw edge going to the side that you want the fringes to appear on.
Sew your strips together leaving at least a 1/2″ seam allowance. I did 6/8″ seam allowance on this quilt.
When they are all sewn together, you lay it out on the mat and line it up to cut your next strips.
Hey…I figured out my mistake right before I sewed them together, lol…so you will notice a change in the order of the fabrics.
Once your strips are cut, you will want to pin them together so that the rows are reversed from each other. I just sew 2 together at a time, but I line them all up together first, to avoid mistakes.
Be sure to line up your corners when pinning these strips together.
Sew all of these pieces together, and then sew a seam allowance around the entire quilt. I’m sorry, I didn’t take any more pictures while I was working, but the outside edge is fairly straight forward.
Next, take your scissors and make cuts on all of the raw edges, including around the outside. Be sure not to cut into your thread.
Once all of the cutting is done, wash your quilt. The raw edges look better with each washing, so you need to wash it at least once to get the effect.
You might also notice that there is an extra row on this one. I didn’t like how small it was, so I added a fifth row after I was finished the other ones.
Here are some more rag quilts I have made…
You can see some other methods of making strip quilts or rag quilts here:
Have you made a DIY rag quilt?