Looking for a fun, easy craft to keep you occupied this summer? Try making your own throw blankets. Come wintertime, you’ll be happy to have extra throw blankets around the house. Likewise, these unique, handmade blankets make perfect gifts. Here are two ways you can make your own throw blanket this summer:
Fleece Tie Throw Blankets. For the novice crafter, fleece blankets are easy to make. Not only do they require no sewing skills, they’re relatively inexpensive to make. To begin, you will need to purchase a 1 ½ yard piece of polar fleece, ruler, and a rotary cutter. While a rotary cutter is ideal, a pair of sharp scissors will work just as well. When purchasing the fleece, ask the crafts associate to cut the material straight. Make sure to trim any uneven edges before beginning. Next, you'll need to cut a 4-inch square out of each of the four corners of the fleece. The next step is to cut 4" x 1" wide fringe all the way around the blanket.
Once you've done that, you'll want to use a seam ripper to make tiny slits at the top of each piece of fringe. The final step is to feed the fringe pieces through the backside of the slit you cut and pull it through, creating a neat and secured fringed edge. If you are planning to give throw blankets as gifts, you may want to personalize them. To do so, take the finished blanket to a sports store or graphic design store that does embroidery. You can have the store embroider the recipient’s name or initials on the blanket.
Quilt. Unlike a fleece blanket, quilts require basic sewing skills and more time. If you are willing to invest the time and energy, however, quilting is a great way to reuse old fabric. In fact, quilts made up of old jerseys or t-shirts make wonderful keepsakes for your family. Once you've gathered up the fabric you're planning on using, you'll need to choose a pattern as well as backing and batting materials.
The batting, also known as the inner layer of the quilt, is what makes a quilt warm and soft. To purchase batting and backing, you'll need to go to a craft shop so a professional can assist you in selecting the right materials.
As far as patterns go, there are tons to choose from, and most are available for free online. Take care when choosing your quilt pattern, as the difficulty and time spent working on the quilt will depend on the pattern you choose. Once you have all of your fabric squares, lay them on the floor and piece the quilt together in diagonal rows. To secure the three layers before it comes time to sew, you'll want to pin them together. To do so, lie the backing material wrong side up on the ground and place the batting material on top.
Next, lay the quilt top onto the batting and smooth the layers, making sure that they all lay straight and flat. Starting at the center, pin the layers (quilt top, batting and backing) every 3 to 6 inches until the entire quilt has been pinned with safety pins. This will keep your quilt pieces together until you are ready for the final step - sewing it together.
Whether you make a fleece blanket or quilt, a handmade blanket is the perfect accessory to any room in your home.