Judy L's UFO Challenge

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Fleece Blankets

I remember around 10 years ago when no-sew fleece blankets were all the rage.  You just put two pieces of fleece together, fringed them and then tied knots to keep them together.  The first and only one I made was neon pink and neon orange.  I really did not like that blanket and, as it was used, liked it even less.  I am not sure where the inspiration came from but I changed my process completely from that first blanket to now.  It continues to be ever changing.

Here is my process.  Buy the best fleece you can afford.  Anti pill is good.  It all works though.  I usually make my blankets 6' long.  If the person is taller than 6' i will add another 6".  Wash the fleece.  Do not use liquid fabric softener as the blankets become crunchy over time.  Fabric softener sheets do a great job.  

Inspect your fleece for the "right" side.  If your fleece has writing on it it is obvious which side that is.  I look for sharper images and consider that right.  If you have a helper grab them now and put the wrong sides together.  Line up the edges all around and lay on a flat surface.  Gently smooth the fleece out.  I do mine on a table and will let the fleece rest for awhile to relax the wrinkles out.  Not necessary but I get a little better result.  I then pin baste around the outside edge about 6" away.  If you notice your edges they are uneven or the selvedge rolls or has a strip of writing on it.  I will trim the edges so that my fringe is consistent all around.

I then sew all around the outside about 5-6 inches away.  Your fringe is going to stretch with use.  I used to cut it about 6" long but my daughter asked me to try 4" this time because of this.  I used a large index card to mark my distance as I sewed by holding it on top of the fleece mostly eyeballing the distance.  Painters tape on the machine bed would have worked too I just didn't feel like looking for it.  LOL.

For the final step I take my shape cut ruler and put the top of the slot on the sewn line.  I then cut at 1" intervals.  When I get near the edge I check to see where my final cut will fall.  If the last piece that lines up with the sewn edge is going to be odd looking I will cut a smaller or larger piece of fringe now so it isn't on the corner where it will be more noticeable.  I've even cut a 1.5" piece then cut that in half with scissors.  I now go over the edges and snip any pieces where my cut may not have been complete.  I also cut the corners out where the sewn line pivots on the corner.

TaDa!  A fleece blanket without those pesky bumps.  One last thing.  You might notice that cutting fleece on your mat leaves tracks and pieces of the fabric stuck in it.  I just took a wet cloth and scrubbed the mat down to remove the fleece leftovers.

I hope you enjoy the process and your snugly blanket.


Barb said...

This is a great charity project...fun and fast.

QuiltSwissy said...

Do you sew across the middle to hold the two sides together?

i have never done a fleece blanket.

one of the ladies at the shelter takes two pieces of fleece, ties and slices like you described. Then stuffs it with stuffing or old pillows she buys from the dollar store or resale shops.

dog beds. If you put the stuffing in a muslin bag, it can be washed.

hmmmm...... I need a dog bed in the quilting room.

Karen - Quilts...etc. said...

I helped my granddaughter make one last fall and come to visit and see she liked it so much that she and her mother made another one.

Bonnie said...

Nice directions. Good quality fleece really helps.

cityquilter grace said...

looks really soft and squeezable....great idea and directions!

ShinyNewThing said...

I've never heard of that type of blanket, interesting.