All photos/art by Ira Garber
Snowy days call for ice skating, hot-chocolate picnics, and sledding parties. But even the hardiest New Englander needs a bit of shelter from the cold. Sling this repurposed flannel quilt over your shoulder, and when the winter chill seeps in, unfurl its warmth and snuggle up! Try using soft old shirts and blankets for the patchwork top and a worn belt for the strap–they’ll give your quilt a cozy, vintage feeling.
Materials to Make a Repurposed Quilt:
old flannel shirts or blankets
fabric backing, 1 yard x 1 yard
needle & thread
iron & ironing board
1-yard (36-inch) leather strip
2 trigger clasps with rings
Instructions to Make a Repurposed Quilt:
Step one: First, you’ll design a simple patchwork top. Begin by cutting your flannel pieces into 8×8-inch squares. You’ll need 25 squares all together.
Step two: Stitch the squares together, making sure that the right sides are facing each other as you sew. Form your rows first, five squares per row; then sew rows together to form the entire square top. As you sew your squares together, you lose about a quarter- to a half-inch on each side, so your finished quilt top will measure about 36 x 36 inches (1 yard x 1 yard).
Step three: Now cut your backing to the same size (1 yard x 1 yard). With right sides of top and bottom facing each other, sew all four edges together almost all the way around, leaving just a small opening (which you’ll use to turn the quilt right side out). Because flannel is a thicker fabric, you don’t have to stuff your quilt with batting.
Step four: Turn the quilt right side out, and press. Stitch the opening closed with needle and thread, making sure to fold your raw edges in, so that they disappear.
Step five: Attach a trigger clasp to each end of the leather strip. Wrap the leather strip to form a handle around your quilt (see photo, above), and place the ring clasp where the trigger clasp meets the leather. Then tighten the ring clasp around the leather. (You may need to use pliers to get a tight fit.) Now you’re all set for a wintry outing!