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Thread: I am making a rag quilt, please help......

  1. #1
    coldtoesinmi's Avatar
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    I have not quilted in a long time and I am making a rag quilt to start out. I need some advice on the best pattern for the quilt. I saw an easy one that was just 9 inch squares (8 inch finished), I wondered if that was to large a block for a rag quilt.

    I am making this quilt with homespun cotton as a trial because a couple of years ago I planned a rag quilt and bought some of the most beautiful flannel I have ever seen. I do not want to "learn" on that. It cost a couple of hundred dollars. Any advice would be great, I have looked around this site, but I would love some personal stories...

    Thanks-

    Michelle :D

  2. #2
    Senior Member crashnquilt's Avatar
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    I've made quite a few rag quilts. The guys in the family just LOVE them! The largest square I've used is 7 inch with 6 inch finished. Here is what I do to make my squares.

    Place back fabric wrong side up
    Place batting cut to finished size of block
    Place top fabric right side up

    Place marker dots at the 1 inch mark on all four corners
    Stitch from mark to mark making a square
    Stitch across diagonal twice making an X inside the stitched square

    Place blocks together and stitch along stitching line to make a row.

    Hope this helps.

  3. #3
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    I've many rag quilts from homespun. I layer and sew the way crashnquilt explained. One important tip I can give you is buy these scissors by Heritage Cutlery

    [IMG]http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z23/sewbug/13033.jpg[/IMG]

    The Fiskar's spring handle scissors are nice but cannot compare to these for cutting rag quilts. I have no hand fatigue at all using these scissors for snipping. the blades are razor sharp and they pop open with no drag at all. The blades are slightly rounded to prevent accidentally cutting into the seam.

  4. #4
    Super Member Carol W's Avatar
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    Please post a pic of your rag quilt when you finish!!

    I can't wait to see it!!

  5. #5
    Moderator littlehud's Avatar
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    Never made one, but want to try someday. Post a picture when your done.

  6. #6
    Super Member mimisharon's Avatar
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    I've only made one with the five inch square, but I used flannel on the inside for batting and the back side. I used a regular cotton but think the homespun would be wonderful. It ravels so nicely on it's own. The Fiskar spring scissors are a must if you have arthritis especially.

    Raggy quilts work up pretty fast if you cut all your layers, then lay them in a stacks, no pinning, I didn't mark mine, I used a built in leaf stitch to decorate and sew the inside of the squares. On the smaller squares I only cut a half inch in, but I can see on the larger block using a longer cut. That makes a lot of sense.

    Hope you enjoy it as much as I do. I've even made purses and baby quilts using the raggy block. Just don't cut the squares until you have them all sewn together, I tried that on one and ended up with a real mess inside and out of my sewing machine.

    Sharon

  7. #7
    Senior Member patty48's Avatar
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    I've got "make a rag quilt" on my list of quilts to do......Can't wait to see a picture.......

  8. #8
    Moderator sharon b's Avatar
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    I cut mine 7 inch squares and then just sew an X across the square. I don't mark the X just eyeball it :lol: Then sew then together in rows .
    Sharon

  9. #9
    Super Member Sharon M's Avatar
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    I've made several rag quilts and love them. I think the easiest way is to sew an X on each block. That holds the batting down best IMO. If you aren't careful how you quilt the squares the batting can roll up between the layers. Oh my ..... when you wash them and dry them to get the raggedy look make sure you clean your washer and dryer lint trap out!!
    Have fun with it and be sure and post a picture of the finished quilt. :D

  10. #10
    coldtoesinmi's Avatar
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    Your advice is so helpful. I have never felt so much encouragement to begin work on any craft project, thanks for the well wishes. What kind of scissors were those blue handled ones?
    You said they were not Fiskar???

    Michelle

  11. #11
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    One important tip I can give you is buy these scissors by Heritage Cutlery
    These scissors are a must have for me to make a rag quilt. :D

  12. #12
    Super Member Carol W's Avatar
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    I use both the Fiskar's and the Heritage when clipping my rag quilts.

    When I'm clipping a large quilt it's a nice change for my hands to grasp two different size handles.


  13. #13
    Senior Member Dorothy of Kansas's Avatar
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    I wash my rag quilts at the laundromat, because of all the lint they put out...don't want to clog my drains at home!! I just made one for my daughter for Christmas with a heart design in the middle. I used flannel and inside, warm and natural batting. I only cut the edges 1/2" instead of the 1" and I like it better.

  14. #14
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    On the one I just finished, I used 1/2" seam allowance. I've decided that if I do another one, I'll have to do 3/4" or 1". I cut through some of the seams when I was stitching! What a mess I had after I washed and dried it - had to re-sew about 8 different places. But it was fun and easy to do. There were 88 8" squares.

  15. #15
    Super Member gcathie's Avatar
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    You got a lot of great advice here.....good luck and be sure to share when you get it done!;.....:-)

  16. #16
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    I use a twin needle when sewing a rag quilt especially when using homespun. That gives me double seams in case I do get to close while snipping into the first one and double seam lines will hold in the wash.

  17. #17
    Senior Member Dorothy of Kansas's Avatar
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    Bellaboo, thanks for that idea. I'll try it on the next rag quilt I do.

  18. #18
    Power Poster nativetexan's Avatar
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    I sewed an X in half the squares and a spiral in the others before putting them into rows. made a nice design across the quilt. have fun :mrgreen:

  19. #19
    Super Member grma33's Avatar
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    I have a stitch on my phaff that double stitches with single needle.
    I wash mine in my dog`s bed pillow case. I use good flannel but some from walmart and I don`t seem to have much to shake out for the birdfs.
    I just finished this baby one with 4 inch finished3
    Gale
    Attached Images Attached Images

  20. #20
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    I rarely get a lot of lint from flannel. The homespun will rag like crazy so check your dryer lint screen every 20 min.

  21. #21
    Senior Member judee0624's Avatar
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    I have made rag quilts with 9 to 10 inch squares and they were fine. I use cheap solid flannel for the middle layer (as batting). I wash everything first. The cutting is tedious but that takes all the time, the rest is easy. I have seen a rag quilt with a scalloped border and a Log Cabin rag quilt. Pretty clever.

    Looking forward to seeing your post with a picture.

    judee

  22. #22
    Junior Member marty_mo's Avatar
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    I have used both 9 and 10 inch blocks (different quilts). I also sew an X across each block and I sew at 3/4 inch and clip at 1/2 inch. Good luck.

  23. #23

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    Judee...do you remember where you saw the scalloped border and log cabin design for the raggy quilts? I would love to see these.

  24. #24
    Power Poster Mousie's Avatar
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    owe a couple laps to good friends and have a lot of fleece leftovers. Does it do as well as flannels?
    This is a great post, thanks, um...will go back and look for your name, wish they would put poster's name somewhere with replies to refer to...and thanks for all the great replies, although i am an observer here, lol!!! isn't it great the way one person starts a thread, and so many benefit. wouldn't expect anything less from this group. hugs to all!!! :D

  25. #25
    Power Poster Mousie's Avatar
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    thanks, coldtoesin michigan...wow, I coulda used that nick, but mine would have been 'hubby-says-git-them-cold-feet-offa-me' :lol:

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