Monday, February 17

Fleece Blanket Tutorial

You may have noticed it's still winter. At our house winter means a raging battle over our most beloved fleecy blanket. It's so cozy warm and big enough to not just cover your feet, but wrap around under them creating a pocket of warmth. We call it "the burrito effect." I made it a few years ago and, yes, it was technically a gift for Husband. But let's not get hung up on the details. All you need to know is it's a race to the couch to see who gets it (unless I'm pregnant. then I win by default.). But a few weeks ago Joann Fabric's fleece went on sale 50% and... wait for it... the sale overlapped a 25% entire purchase coupon by two days. You better believe I was there during that overlap. And so Fleecy #2 was born.

Our first blanket is plain solid colors but they have some seriously fun prints and with the super sale/coupon combo I decided to spring for something a little more special that the boys would love. And went with my favorite green on the back. It's super easy to make, and I prefer to the cut and tie method because I think it's faster and it gives a nice tidy edge when you're done. If you want to make one all you need is:
  • 2.5 yards printed no-pil fleece
  • 2.5 yards solid no-pil fleece
  • matching thread

Start by pre-washing and drying your fabric. Even though fleece won't shrink, you'll want to make sure there aren't any nasty dyes or chemicals hanging on from the factory before you snuggle up with it. Cut off the selvage edges so it looks nice and tidy. Stack the pieces with right sides together and line up  the edges as much as you can and trim any edges you need to get the pieces to match up perfectly - my green ended up being several inches wider and one end was cut crooked so I trimmed it down to match the printed piece. It helps to lay it out on the floor so you can make sure it's flat and lined up right. Pin around the edges. Sew around the edges with a 5/8" seam allowance, leaving an 8 - 10" opening for turning.

Clip the corners.

Flip it right side out and push the corners out nice and square. Lay it out flat on the floor again to make sure it's all lined up right. Tuck in the fabric at the opening and pin it closed. Pin all around the edges, and put several pins across the center of the blanket to keep the layers from shifting while you work.

Topstitch all around the the outside of the blanket with a 1/4" seam allowance. Then go around again with a 2" or so seam allowance - I just followed the edge of the ruler on my sewing machine.

With the 2" line I went all the way to the ends of the blanket like the pic below. So it made little squares in the corner. Just for cutes. If you want you can be done here (that's where I stopped with this one) or you can add some quilting lines all across the middle to keep the layers from shifting (I did that with my first blanket in a squiggly free-style pattern). With this blanket we haven't noticed the layers shifting out of place, but it does seem to get more static than the one with quilting lines. I wonder if it's because the layers aren't as locked in place and can slide against each other more, but I don't know for sure. Just something to consider. :)

And that's it! Snuggle up and wait for spring! With the sale and coupon it still cost about $22 to make this blanket. So fleece isn't very cheap... but it was definitely cheaper than the $55+ it would have cost full price. And I was able to make it much bigger and thicker than the cheap little throw blankets from the store!

Now our household lives in harmony once again. Although you should probably know these are actually big enough to fit two people... unless you turn it into a highly competitive game. ;) If you're feeling a little chilly there are probably some good fleece sales coming up with spring on the horizon, so keep your eyes open and make yourself a nice fleecy blanket... or two!


  1. So excited to find this link on Pinterest.. Exactly what I'm looking for to make and send to my hubby overseas!

    1. Oh good! These are still our favorite blankets. I hope he loves it! :)

  2. I also bind mine with fleece it makes a nice edge and I just cut across the width to make the binding. Cute in a different color.

    1. Oh, that's a great idea! Do you do double layer fleece for the blanket or a single layer?