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How to--rag quilt?

How to--rag quilt?

Old 03-24-2012, 11:56 AM
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Question How to--rag quilt?

My son wanted to know how large a seam when making a rag quilt. I couldn't help him since I have never made one. Also, blocks can be any size, I presume and he was wondering if they could be rectangles and set as you would bricks. He likes to sew and was given a stack of jeans. He thought he would try making a rag quilt with them. Thanks everyone. I told him I'd find out here. Marge L.
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Old 03-24-2012, 12:55 PM
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Here's the instructions I used when I learned how to make a rag quilt. I have made them using flannel, denims, and fleece. And I make my squares as big as I want to, so don't feel locked into doing 5" squares, I do 8" and even 11" squares, and they can be one ply or two. I do a lot of fleece with only 1 ply. And on the flannel rag quilt, I don't always include a center piece. It depends on where it's going. I live in So. CA, a 3 ply blanket is just too warm here, and it can get pretty heavy too if the blanket is big enough. And sometimes the directions recommend using a walking foot but I just use my regular machine foot. I guess if you are doing a thick rag quilt, with 3 plies, a walking foot would be a good idea.

Hope all this info helps.

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Old 03-24-2012, 01:11 PM
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usually you sew with a 1/2 inch seam.
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Old 03-24-2012, 01:27 PM
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1/2 inch seam and rectangles are fine. I have a book on how to make rag quilts and they use rectangles in a few of them. Rag quilt scissors are invaluable for making one (or so I have heard as I have the scissors but haven't made the quilt yet.
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Old 03-24-2012, 01:38 PM
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I do 1/2" on smaller blocks and 5/8" on larger blocks. You can use any size you like just like any shape or size squares you use. You can use the denim alone or with a layer of flannel (saw the one layer denim on Etsy I think they called it a picnic blanket) and the denim will get heavy very quickly. I found a great tip here (can't remember from whom) to make it in sections and snip the seams as you go. Don't snip the seams you are going to be sewing other sections too. An example would be, if you have 20 rows, sew 4 sets of 5 rows and then sew the 4 sets together. Unless it is a very small quilt take it to the laundry mat for the first washing because you could stop up your washer. The raq quilt snips are a must. I saw a video on You Tube for a denim rag quilt made from jeans using a rectangler shape for the blocks.
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Old 03-24-2012, 01:48 PM
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You've gotten some good answers. One thing I would add: Don't try to cut the seams all in one sitting. The cutting really hits the wrists (particularly when using denim) and doing a section at a time will still get the job done.
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Old 03-24-2012, 02:02 PM
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That is so cool your son wants to sew. Good for him!!! Tell him not to cut into the seams...close, by not into them or they'll unravel. I also do 1/2" but I haven't done big blocks. I think rectangles would look really great. Unusual for a rag quilt. My first rag quilt was jeans, and I didn't know much about sewing so I only used 2 ply thickness. It worked. My niece uses it in Texas where it's really hot. I bought a pair of scissors that are spring loaded to cut all the edges. Helps so much. I think if he makes kind of big blocks, he won't get burned out on it.
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Old 03-24-2012, 02:15 PM
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Definitely get the spring loaded scissors. I did one before I bought them and believe me your hands will ache and cramp before you are done.
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Old 03-24-2012, 02:15 PM
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I do a 1" seam, but that's what is specified on the Accuquilt site when you use the dies. It would depend on how much ragging you want. I would not go smaller than 1/2" for sure.
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Old 03-24-2012, 06:12 PM
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I have made several flannel rag quilts. My hands got stiff until I used my seam ripper to cut the fringe. Just poke it close to the seam and push away from yourself. I do not know how that would work on denim. Rectangles would be fine.

Last edited by JudyMN; 03-24-2012 at 06:14 PM. Reason: Spelling
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