An inexpensive way to make a quilt is by using old clothing. This is also a great way to preserve special clothing, whether your own or maybe your children's old clothes. This is a guide about making a quilt out of clothing.
Approximate Time: 14 days
For a picnic sized quilt that measures 79 x 79 inches, cut 400 circles from denim and 400 squares from flannel.
Join 4 circles and sew square centers in, sewing the "scallops" down in a zig-zag stitch to secure.
I make blocks and find it easier in joining the pieces later as the quilt becomes heavier. This quilt has no batting.
It weighs 5 lbs. and is quite warm for summer or winter.
By Monica from Cortez, CO
This is such a beautiful quilt. I have a hard time with instructions sometimes. Is there any way to get instructions with more pictures? Just not sure how to connect the circles. Have not been quilting very long and am learning on my own.
Wow, I've been wanting to make a quilt like that for a long time. Thanks for sharing.
I've made two denim quilts in the past, and have been saving old jeans to make a third. I've also been saving flannel because I knew that I wanted to back it with the flannel somehow. Several ideas have been swirling around in my head, but I really like this one! I've always wanted to make a cathedral window quilt, and although this one isn't traditional, I really love it. Thank you so much for the inspiration! I can hardly wait to finish my other projects so I can get started on it.
This is a guide about making a quilt from old sweaters. Quilts have long been a handicraft that was a perfect way to recycle old clothing and linens into a new useful item.
Ask one of the elder family members to let you take their old shirts or dresses. Cut them up into strips or squares and make a quilt for the persons child or grandchild. It doesn't have to be fancy. What a treasure this was for my stepdaughter to get a quilt made out of her daddy's old shirts.
There are books in the library to show you how to do a very simple quilt for those who don't sew.
By Ardis Barnes
I have a huge box of my Dad's flannel shirts that I would love to make into a bed quilt, as he passed away almost 5 years ago. Was thinking of backing it with tshirts or a sheet/thin thermal blanket, but I'm not a much of a sewer, and do not have a sewing machine (yet). I can crochet & do simple sewing though. Any ideas how to make a quilt without sewing? Just thought I'd ask... thanks for your post!
Similiar to this... When I was a child, I took old clothes that I or my siblings had worn and made them into a doll quilt for my "babies". The squares were 4x4. I used the good part of an old tattered blanket for backing. I still have that "baby" blanket and my nieces use it for their babies when they come to my house. It's neat to look at it and remember the outfits each fabric came from. I got the idea from a book I had been reading at the time called "Patchwork Quilt". It was about a girl who's grandmother (I think!) had made a patchwork quilt for her out of her old dresses.
There is a grid iron on fabric that acts as a stabilizer. It's marked in one inch squares, but you can use any size you want. The last time I used it I used 6 inch squares. Use the tip of the iron to hold them in place till all your squares are how you want them. Then all you have to do is press the fabric in place, fold on each line where the squares end and sew on the folded line from one side to another, up and down. Its so easy to make the perfect quilt with this grided stabilizer, and it gives you all the instructions. Ardis
A friend gave me some sweats she couldn't wear anymore, but they didn't fit me or anyone in my family. I decided to try to make a quilt. I used light green, black, and red sweats and made a lap quilt. It's really warm and great for using during trips.
When I no longer need an item of clothing, I cut it apart at the seams and use the pieces to make quilt squares. I only use 100% cotton, that has been washed many times and will no longer shrink.
How do I make a quilt out of old clothes? What size are the squares suppose to be? After I sew them together what is my next step? My mother just passed away and I really want to make a quilt out of her clothes.
By Connie from Canton, GA
You can make the squares any size that you want. Myself being I'm not real patient, I make them as large as I can. lol Usually I make about a nine inch square. One thing you don't want to do is mix wovens and knits together. Also real light weight fabrics don't endure real long in a quilt. My Mother made my disabled daughter a quilt out of old clothes one time and the squares that were made out of lighter weight fabrics combined with the fact that they were slightly worn, didn't last as long as the ones made out of heavier cotton type fabrics and the new ones. As each square wore out I just covered it with a new square.
Here is a site with instructions on how to make a simple crib quilt, but you can adjust the measurements to make it any size you want.
My sister makes the cutest vests from acquired fabrics. Lightweight fabrics can be cut in to thin strips for crocheting a cloche or toque a trendy item the kids are wearing these days.
Make a quilt easily and cheaply. Use a flashy fabric for the top made from cheap clothing from the second hand shop. Use a mattress pad for the batting, and a nice fleecy or soft bedspread for the backing. Sew together and put a few ties into the center for stability.
My mother had a few dresses she wore a lot. After she passed away, I got the idea to make a quilt top using the clothes, but I wanted to keep the pieces large. I was thinking of maybe cutting a dress long ways down a seam so you could see the buttons. Maybe put her apron in. The problem is I have never quilted, so I don't know if a quilt of this type is possible.
It is possible, and what a lovely way to keep your mum's memory alive! You can use her blouses or perhaps a lovely bodice (top part of a dress) to make a coordinated pillow (or first project to learn quilting without the daunting prospect of a entire bed quilt).
See the following link for a great quilting site with numerous beginner quilter pages, and a fantastic forum to ask for special help:
I hope when your project is finished you will post a picture.
Wonderful idea!!! A local quilting shop or the Quilt Guild can help you along with this!! Great idea, don't get discouraged, and you can accomplish this project!!!
For an easy Christmas gift, save your used children's clothes. Cut out as many squares and sew them together to make a front cover for a quilt.
I have made a quilt out of my son's favorite graphic T-shirts. I just kept saving the shirts. When we had a few dozen, I cut huge squares with the designs, and the plain sides the same size.
When my boys were small they loved wearing the character socks (Batman, Spiderman, Looney Tunes, etc.) As they grew older or wore out a pair, I saved them to make a quilt. I'm going to use the socks that don't have holes in them to make a "wheel" pattern and use solid fabrics as the background.
I have a lot of my late mother's clothes and would love to make a beginners quilt out of them. Does anyone have directions to share?
Debra from Hampton, Tenn
How detailed do you need the directions? I started out with a book called "Quilt in a Day" and although it called for yards of fabric you could still use what you have. It is the Log Cabin pattern and uses strips sewn together to make blocks. This book has very basic instructions that almost anybody could follow even if they can barely sew. Or you could just cut blocks whatever size you want and.. Anyway, how much detail do you need? Do you already sew? (07/14/2008)
I would cut blocks and sew together. Nothing simpler. I cut dad's shirts to make a sunbonnet Sue quilt to honor him. The quilt is still in progress after five years. It is a wonderful way to honor someone and the fabrics bring back memories. (07/15/2008)
Try both of these links:
I made a quilt from my dad's clothes and it turned out great. I had never quilted before. I cut 6 inch squares (using a quilt ruler and a rotary cutter) and sewed them together in rows, and then sewed the rows together. You can make it as long or wide as you wish. This is the quilt top. Then put quilt batting (all in one large piece) behind the squares you have sewn together. My dad was a railroader, so I bought a print material with pictures of all kinds of trains for the backing. Then I put quilt binding around the edges to hold the 3 layers together. Then I took yarn and tied every other square to hold the 3 layers together and keep the batting from moving around in the quilt. Good luck. I hope these instructions help. I have since made 3 more for friends of mine when their parents passed away. (07/15/2008)
Just a note to say my cousins made teddy bears of material quilted from their mom's dresses. So they all have a keepsake. Really a nice idea I thought. (07/16/2008)
I once made little suit coats for new teddy bears, out of a sport coat from a friend's dad. I kept everything in plastic as much as possible because she said the sport coat still smelled like her Daddy. I know the fragrance didn't last forever, but she and her sister had a extra sweet remembrance and a special bear from "Daddy". (07/18/2008)
As a Newbie, too, "Quilting for Dummies" has been my best friend. Some important points include: cut same-size squares, allow for 1/4 inch hem, try to use the same material so laundering will not be a problem, and set the length of your stitches medium to long. I began sewing the squares together using a small-length stitch, and the squares detached themselves as though they were connected using perforated paper! And, to ensure hem lines are all 1/4 inch, and sewn straight, measure 1/4 inch on every side and put a strip of masking tape down, this serves as a good guide. (07/15/2010)