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Red White and Blue Bandana Quilt Tutorial

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Learn how to make a super quick and easy picnic quilt from bandanas!  This Bandana quilt pattern is double-sided, has no binding and makes the perfect quilt for summer picnics and patriotic holidays.

Bonus: you can have this quilt completely put together in just a few short hours!

bandana quilt

First Things First… Is it Bandana or Bandanna?

Ok, so I googled the answer and still am not clear, lol. Spell check keep trying to correct the spelling to bandanna, but almost everywhere on the web it is spelled bandana. If you look the words up in the dictionary or thesaurus, the definitions are exactly the same and the other spelling is listed as a synonym for each.

What do you think is it bandanna or bandana?

Red White and Blue Bandana Quilt.

(Update: this post was originally published in 2013, but this bandana quilt is such a fantastic quick and easy quilting project for this time of the year, I decided to update the photos a bit and reshare it with everyone today!)

Every Fourth of July, our family heads down to the little festival and firework display put on by our city.  In the past, I’ve always brought along an old comforter for everyone to sit on while hang out and wait for the fireworks.  This year, I decided to get a little fancy and make a special picnic quilt out of red white and blue bandanas. (Plus it’s only June 24th, how ahead of the game and I, the procrastinator extraordinaire?)

Easy Bandana Quilt patterns

Why this Bandana Quilt Method is So Great!

One of the reasons this is such a great quilt to make is that it is just so darn easy!

You are basically sewing together Nine bandanas for the font of the quilt and Nine bandanas for the back.

There is just a bit of straight line quilting. And you then use a “cheater” no binding method to finish the edges of the quilt.

Since no binding is needed on this easy bandana quilt pattern, it has a very casual look and comes together in just a few hours! (It’s a bit different from the other cheater quilt method I showed off on this quilt.)

bandana quilt

I do wish I had thought a little bit more ahead when planning the colors of the quilt.  It is double-sided, so I could have done the back side in different color bandanas that the quilt could be used for different occasions.  (Oh well, hindsight is always 20/20 right?)

The photo below is the quilt after 7 years… Looks great doesn’t it?

how to make a bandana quilt

One of the questions I get most often is, Do the bananas bleed in the wash? The red bandana did bleed just a bit on to the white the first time I washed the quilt, but it’s not super noticeable. I used Shout Color Catchers in all subsequent washings and had no trouble with bleeding. (I just didn’t have them or even think about it the first time.)

easy bandana quilt

Other Fun Bandana Project Ideas:

I actually love making projects with bandanas.  Since their edges are already finished, it makes the projects come together so much quicker!

 

How to Make a Bandana Quilt (in just a few hours.)

To make this Quick and Easy Bandana quilt, you will need:

Materials Needed:

  • 18 Bandanas (9 per side make a great picnic quilt) Amazing bandana variety pack here.
  • Quilt Batting
  • Safety pins
  • Scissors, ruler, Basic sewing supplies

Red White and Blue Bandana Quilt Sewing Instructions:

1.  Start by laying out your bandanas into a pleasing pattern.

Red White and Blue Picnic Quilt. How to Make a Quilt from Bandanas in just a few hours. (No binding method.)

2. Line up the bandanas right sides together and sew along the edge using a 1/4 inch seam allowance.  Sew all the bandanas together in a row and then sew the rows together.

Don’t stress too much about lining the bandanas up perfectly or matching up corners, because this will not happen!  Bandanas are never cut straight!

3.  Repeat the steps above for the other quilt side.

4.  Iron all the seams flat.  (You really could just stop here and have an adorable tablecloth to use for your family celebrations.  Like my bandana tablecloths here.)

5. Lay one side of the quilt flat on the ground with the wrong side up and top with the quilt batting.  If you need to trim the quilt batting to fit, be sure to leave 3 to 4 inches around the entire quilt in case the bandanas or batting shift when quilting.

6.  Use safety pins and pin the quilt batting in place.  Sew a couple of quilting lines down the quilt to hold the batting in place.  Remove all the pins.

7.  Make your quilt “sandwich” by laying the quilt back out on the floor with the batting side down and and place the 2nd quilt side on top with the  wrong side facing up.

8.  Sew along the edges, leaving a 10 inch opening so you can flip the quilt right side out.

Red White and Blue Picnic Quilt. How to Make a Quilt from Bandanas in just a few hours. (No binding method.)

9.  Trim the edges to a scant 1/4 inch.

10.  Flip the quilt right side out.

11.  Hand or machine sew the opening closed.  You could iron the edges flat and topstitch around the edges, though I chose not to do this for time sake.

12 Add a couple more lines of quilting to hold the quilt front and back in place.  You can really do as much or as little quilting as you want.

You are done!

Patriotic Picnic Quilt from bandanas

My “assistant” could not wait to give the quilt a test run…

Red White and Blue Picnic Quilt. How to Make a Quilt from Bandanas in just a few hours. (No binding method.)

Want more easy quilt patterns?  be sure to check these out:

Make a Chevron Quilt the easy way

 
 

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49 Comments

  1. Jutta Forkel says:

    How big did this picnic quilt end up being?

    1. I don’t have it in front of me but it was around 62 by 62 ish. Depends on the size of the bandana I’m pretty sure mine were 22 by 22

  2. Serena L Jones says:

    I’m an easy quilter wanna be. I want to make sure I understand a clue things. When being instructed to see the batting on the 1st side; I’m using a sewing machine sewing a straight line from one side to the other, right? Also the last instruction to quilt a couple more lines is sewing machine again, right? If so, do you see along the line of the joined bandanas? I’ve been wanting to make one of these for quite a while. Thank you

    1. Yes, use your sewing machine and you do see the line of joined bandannas like you do on any pieced quilt, The seam edges will be on the inside of the quilt.

  3. I made this as a tablecloth for our 4th of July celebration. I needed a few extra inches so I added a two inch cotton lace in between… I really like the way it turned out. THANK YOU for your great ideas!!!

  4. Angie Jerrell says:

    Thank YOU! This a perfect project! I am so excited about it. EASY instructions! LOVE IT

  5. Louise Stensland says:

    How many bandana’s do we need for a full size quilt?

    1. not sure, you would just have to do a little math.

  6. I’d love to do this with a water resistant backing…Hmm, wonder if I could sew through oilcloth?

    1. Yes you can, however you should use a DENIM – size 16 sewing machine needle for its weight and sharpness.

  7. Have you tried rinsing the bandanas in vinegar? I remember doing that when we tie dyed shirts to set the colors. Just wondered if it would work here.

  8. This is so cute.. I have never made a quilt, but have been wanting to learn. I think this will be
    a great one to start learning! Thanks so much for sharing!

  9. ella ruth says:

    I have a habit of collecting bandanas. This would be a good project to start with. Thanks so much for sharing. : )

  10. This is so cute! It's perfect for sitting under the fireworks on the 4th of July.
    ~Bonnie @ Behind the Seams Sewing

  11. Thank you thank you! I have some random bandanas at my house that I have been trying to put to use. This would be a great project for me & my daughter to work on!

  12. This is plain old amazing! Thanks for sharing at Project Inspire{d}, it's featured this week!