Rag Quilt for Project Linus

A rag quilt is a nice starter quilt and I consider myself a beginning quilter. Yes, I sew but I have never made a quilt.  When a blogger friend, Kimbo from A Girl and a Glue Gun asked me to participate in a blanket fundraiser I almost said no.  Then when I realized the quilts were going to kids in a hospital I changed my mind.  I am a perfectionist and making something to give to another person is a scary event.  I don’t like being judged.   Not that they are judging, but in all reality that is what my minds thinks.  My kids think I make the best stuff ever and it is always perfect to them.  But a stranger is a different story.  Luckily, kids are not judgmental and they love getting gifts.  Selfishly I thought this was the perfect reason to make one and it would be a win-win.  I would learn how to do a basic quilt and a child would get something special to use during their hospital stay.  How could I say no?  Then, as I prepared my supplies to make the quilt, I thought tweens and teens might need them too and that most people would select fabric for little kids.  So I went with one of my favorite fabrics called Urban Nomad and solids from Kona.  I learned a lot of lessons along the way.  A 4″ square is the ABSOLUTE smallest I would ever go.  I made a bazillion and one squares.

Rag Quilt Project Linus Lukes Loves

Directions for rag quilt at bottom of article.

Now for the important information about Luke’s Loves and Project Linus.


There are a couple ways YOU can participate!

A. Make a blanket! They accept NEW, HANDMADE, WASHABLE, blankets and afghans for giving to children ages 0-18 years. Many sizes are appropriate depending on chapter need. For example, blankets could be as small as 36″ × 36.” The majority of Project Linus blankets are about 40″ × 60″, or what is called “crib size.” Blankets could be as large as twin size for teens. (You can head HERE and click on FAQs.)

You can either go HERE and find out where you can donate Locally (just click on your state)–Or you can mail it directly to Kimbo.

ATTN: Luke’s Loves

4552 Independence Ave

Chubbuck Idaho 83202

(Either way –we are trying to keep a heads count! and would love to see the blanket! If you want to email us and let us know…or send a picture ([email protected]Link up at the linky party below, or tag us on instagram with #lukesloves)

You could have a blanket making party. Get the gals together to tie a fun quilt. Teach your daughter to sew a simple baby blanket. I personally love blankets. Only straight lines! Nothing tricky about it!

B. Donate —Let say you lack the time—or maybe even the skill but still want to get involved–You can easily donate money HEREon the project Linus page–or even donate fabric!!!

C. SHARE SHARE SHARE and a lastly! Share ! We would love any extra exposure we can find! You can save any picture on here or just add a link to any social media you have! Pin! Facebook! Instagram (#lukesloves) We need to get some word out and would love any extra push! Tell your friends, tell your friend’s friends.

Materials for the Rag Quilt:

Instructions for the Rag Quilt:

Plus a handy square cutting guide for rag quilts.

  1. Select your size of quilt and quilt square.  The larger the square is the quicker the cutting is and less sewing.  I wish I would have made mine bigger.  Lesson learned.  LOL
  2. Each square for the quilt will need a top a batting and a backing.  Use a 1/2-inch seam allowance for the rag quilt.
  3. The stacks should go top fabric face up, batting then bottom fabric face out. Slide a few straight pins through the stack to hold fabrics together. (Fusiboo is ironed to the back side of the fabric. With the top layer, batting and bottom layer forming a sandwich.)
  4. Make as many pieces as you need for the size up quilt you are using.  (guide below)
  5. Make your pattern and stack in rows according to pattern placement.
    Omni grid guide for cutting

How to Sew the Rag Quilt

  1. Gather the first two blocks in the first row. Place the stacks backing sides together, noting which edges should be connected. Sew along the aligned edges with a 1/2-inch seam allowance. Some people like to sew Xs in the center of each square.  I did it on the center and not the outer bands. I like the X look better.  You decide what you like.
  2. Add the next block, again placing backing sides together.
  3. Finish sewing the blocks in each row together. Attach rows to each other, placing rows backing sides together and matching seam intersections. When the quilt is complete, sew a seam  around the entire quilt, 1/2-inch from each side. If you stop 1/2″ from ends, backstitch at each angle of the corner.
  4. Once the pieces are sewn together you will need to clip the edges. Make perpendicular cuts about 1/4″ apart along all seams. Do not cut too close to the seam lines. I did this on a few and had to go in and repair them after the washing.  Lesson learned.I made this handy guide for your use.  Take my advice and go with bigger squares unless you enjoy the cutting process.  Some people do and I am not one of them.
    Rag quilt square size guide 2016

    1 yard = 90 four inch quilt squares

    1 yard = 36 six inch quilt squares

    1 yard = 12 ten inch quilt squares

    2 yards = 28 ten inch quilt squares



56 thoughts on “Rag Quilt for Project Linus”

  1. Kim says:

    Like this chart…but what is the yardage??

    1. Niki Meiners says:

      Rag quilts are generally made with scraps. The yardage will depend on the width of the fabric. You can calculate how much yardage you will beed by:
      1. What size of squares are you going to cut? 6-inch If you use bigger squares, the project will be easier and go faster.
      2. How many different fabrics are you going to use?
      3. How large do you want the quilt to be?
      4. How wide is your fabric?

      Draw a picture of your quilt and label where you will use each fabric. Then count up the number of squares for each print. Don’t forget to multiply by 2 for the back of the quilt.

      For example using a 43″ wide fabric on a quilt 35” x 40” and 3 different fabrics-
      The fabric is 43” wide, and are cutting 6” squares. That means 7 squares out of the width of fabric, for every 6” cut of fabric, there is 7 squares.
      38 squares of each print is needed. So seven 6” strips of each of our fabrics. That is 42” of each of the three fabrics.

  2. Sandra T says:

    I’m not sure but I think there might be an error on your chart. Looking at the 7″ squares, a twin size needs 165 squares, a full size needs 210 squares but a queen size goes down to 169 squares and a king jumps up to 270. I’m guessing that the queen size should be closer to 240 squares.

    1. Niki Meiners says:

      Thank you. It is updated to reflect the correct number of 225.

  3. Dianne Williams says:

    Do I cut the batting squares the same size as the quilt squares?

    1. Niki Meiners says:

      Hi, I cut them slightly smaller.

    2. Donna hall says:

      No, I made that error, make smaller,other wise it shows .

  4. Linda says:

    I have always heard using Flannel for rag quilts makes for better “ragging”, What fabric would you recommend. Thank-you

    1. Niki Meiners says:

      Flannels is a great choice and so are most cotton fabrics.

      1. Jayne Rivera says:

        should I wash the flannel before cutting or can I do it when I have finished the quilt?

  5. Delores says:

    Thank you for the chart. I love to make rag quilts and this will be so useful.

    1. Niki Meiners says:

      Please share a photo. We love seeing projects.

  6. Linda says:

    So reading your chart for a baby quilt it says that you need 192 4 inch squares. Is that for just the top of the quilt.

    1. Niki Meiners says:

      It is for the top and bottom.

      1. Terri Simone says:

        I disagree. Example- baby quilt that is 7 columns by 10 rows = 70 squares needed, but that’s just the top. Times two to have enough for the back squares, also, right? For a total of 140 squares. Kind of wish this chart made that a little clearer – or am I nuts??

        1. Niki Meiners says:

          There are 70 squares total and each square has a top, a bottom and a middle. Hope that helps.

          1. Terri Simone says:

            I understand the construction of the quilt, that each square has top, middle (perhaps batting) and bottom layers. It’s the chart that I think is confusing. I feel like it ought to say that the amounts shown are for just one layer of the squares. For example, 70 squares are needed for the quilt top layer, another 70 squares are needed for the bottom layer, etc. (going back to my original example)
            Just a thought, as I see several others are struggling with needed fabric amounts. Thank you. I hope I explained myself better this time!

          2. Sara Gordon says:

            Terri Simone >> You don’t generally put squares on the bottom as well. The middle is batting, yes. And the bottom is generally one large piece of plain-ish or coordinated fabric.

          3. Niki Meiners says:

            The choice is completely yours. You can do one big piece or and tie it in each center or you can do them all at one time.

  7. Cici Bernstrom says:

    Is this just for the quilt top or combined top. so, for a queen do I need 169 total or double that for top and bottom

    1. Niki Meiners says:

      Each square for the quilt will need a top, a batting, and a backing.

  8. Janet says:

    So I’m making a queen size and cut the 6 inch squares but I’m ending up with only 9 rows of 18 squares. Obviously I’ve done something wrong bcuz I’m short 9 rows?

    1. Niki Meiners says:

      I emailed you from my personal email.

  9. Joyce Cogdill says:

    Where do you use the fusible batting-is it fused to the front or back, before or after sewing? If not fused to material, could regular batting be used??

    1. Niki Meiners says:

      Hi, the fusible batting – Fusiboo or Smooth Fusible fleece can both be used. They are ironed to the back side of the fabric. With the top layer, batting and bottom layer forming a sandwich.

  10. Ashley Velez says:

    Hi I wanted to know if the columns is the Width or length?

    1. Niki Meiners says:

      Hi Ashley, Columns go up and down vertically.

  11. For 6 inch squares, I need to cut my squares 7 1/2 Inches, correct? To allow for 1/2 inch seam.

    1. Niki Meiners says:

      You are correct. Good luck and send us a picture when you finish.

      1. Ann Ryan says:

        For a 6 in square adding an inch for 1/2 seam allowance in my calculations is you cut a 7 inch square. What is the extra 1/2 inch for in the 7 1/2 number?

  12. [email protected] says:

    how many blocks will it take for large king size bed blocks cross and down using 12″ blocks

    1. Niki Meiners says:

      10 squares down and 11 squares across in its rows should be a generous size.

  13. Diane says:

    Would it be possible to use tee-skirts to make a rag quilt?

    1. Niki Meiners says:

      You can use t-shirts to make drag quilt but you will need to use a stabilizer. Our Smooth fusible fleece would work well.

      1. Vicki says:

        The idea of a rag quilt is to use a fabric that will fray when washed and with use. You won’t get a frayed seam look with tee shirt material.

  14. Ann Fontana says:

    I love your site and advice. For a throw quilt, with a 7″ square choice, Does the 7″ include the 1/2″ seam allowance on each side or should I cut my squares 8″ to provide for the seam allowance and get the finished size of the quilt? thank you so very much, Ann

    1. Niki Meiners says:

      The squares on the chart call for a 1/2-inch seam allowance for the rag quilt.

  15. Samantha says:

    I am going by your chart for a full size and i cut the square 7″ . Does that mean 7′ all around?

    1. Niki Meiners says:

      Each square would be 7 inches by 7 inches.

  16. Stacey says:

    Can you give the squares needed for 8, 9 and 10″ squares for each of the size blankets above?

    1. Niki Meiners says:

      At this time we do not have those numbers available.

  17. Carol White says:

    Love this site. We are a small group of gals just learning to quilt.
    I was wondering if there is a way that we could get any of your free info sheets.
    We would love to try the Rag Quilt . Is it possible we could have six copies?
    If so we would greatly appreciate it.Sounds like a safe project to start with.

    Thank you, Carol

    1. Niki Meiners says:

      Hi Carol,
      You can print the graphic from a home computer or even from a library computer. If you look in our Project Gallery there are many free patterns there too.

  18. Ann says:

    How many 10″ squares for a king size quilt?

    1. Niki Meiners says:

      At this time we do not have those numbers available.

  19. Shirley Mondrick says:

    You will need 198 11″ x 11″ cut squares to end up with 10″ squares finished on your quilt. You cut 11″ squares and use a 1/2″ seam allowance. 99 squares for a king front and 99 squares for the back. Total 198 squares. This equals 11 blocks across and 9 rows down. Should finish at 110″ across by 90″ down. size for a king quilt.

  20. B. says:

    Shirley Mondrick, You sound knowledgeable. For a queen rag quilt that hangs over the side of the mattress, using Accuquilt’s 8.5″ square rag die, the directions call for a 1″ seam allowance because the fringe cuts at 3/4″. How many squares do I need to make squares for top and bottom? (Anyone can answer this.)

  21. Tanya Metzger says:

    Please visit Pinterest for your answers. I have been making quilts for years but have only been making Rag quilts for a year.
    2 important tips-always make your batting an inch smaller than your squares because it doesn’t fray well. If you sew with a half inch seam allowance, your quilt will come out with the right number of squares.
    Have fun and enjoy it!

  22. Audrey Carter says:

    Could you please tell me about the “X” in the center of the center square? I’m not sure what it is for.

  23. Audrey Carter says:

    Could you please tell me the “X” in the center square? Why would you do that, for decoration? Why wouldn’t you do it for all of them. Thank you.

    1. Niki meiners says:

      The “X” holds the batting in place and helps keep it smooth.

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