Quilt Using Old Jeans – Denim Quilting!


Hi this is Jenny from the Missouri Star Quilt
Company. Today we are going to talk about jean quilting. And I want to tell you a story
about my grandma. When I was a little girl, she drew flowers on everything. I mean, she
loved to draw flowers. They weren’t necessarily the flowers you see in your garden, they were
flowers that she would make up. And she had so much fun with them. Every letter had a
little flower on it, you know it’s just really fun. Well we got the idea to have her
start putting them on jean squares. She loved to embroider. She did not sew, but she did
embroider. And she loved to embroider, so she would sit every day and embroider these
flowers on these jean squares. And this jean behind me is an example of some of the flowers
that she would draw and put together. And she, she would do. It took her about a day
in a half to do one square, sometimes only a day. And so, she amassed these very quickly,
and so I started putting them together as quilts. And I had to come up with a lot of
jeans to do that. And I want to show you today how to cut those apart. In front of me here,
I have one of the first plain jean quilts that I made. I never wanted to take this out
to a picnic because it was the art of my grandmother. But I loved the idea of jean quilting. So
I would sew together when my kids would outgrow jeans or if they would get paint on them or
holes in them. I would just cut them apart and make patches with them until I had enough,
enough squares to put them together. Now a jean quilt is great because you’ll know
from the jeans you wear, if you are having a picnic or your out at the beach, nothing
sticks to those jeans. The other cool thing is if you have jean quilt
and if it gets a hole in it, well you can just iron a patch on it. I mean it’s just,
they are so low care, you know how much we love our jeans. And jean quilts go together
very easily. So let me show you how we get these squares. You are going to need an old
pair of jeans, and you are going to need a good pair of scissors. So what I do first
is I try to look for my biggest pieces of fabric. I will cut of this bottom hem right
here. You can see right here I am just cutting that off. Not careful really about where I
am cutting. And then I will come, and we don’t want any of these seams, the side seams in
our jean patches, because it’s too many layers to sew over. It is just too thick for
our sewing machine. So I just cut along this seam edge. And I go all the way up the side. Until I
hit something I can’t get through, like the pocket. And then I’ll cut kind of around
the pocket and across like this. You can see it, I am just not even being careful. I’ll
come down here and then I’ll cut across this seam right here. You can see, here’s
the inside leg seam, these things are like a monster all over the place. But I am going
to cut up here. Sometimes I like to use the pockets in my jean quilts. By the way, I have
made jean quilts for all of my children, and they love them. They just covet them from
you know, I mean they just everybody wants a jean quilt because they are just great to
have in the car, they’re great for picnics. Really wearable. So now I have, I have this
big area. I have cut this leg off. This is the other leg which I’ll cut later. And
I have this big piece of fabric. You can see what a big piece of fabric we have on here
once it is all opened up. So what I am going to do now is I’m going
to find a square, a ruler, or a template. I used to cut out, you know, cardboard squares
or whatever it is that makes the biggest square we can make. So I will find that spot right
here. And I am going with a 9 ½” ruler right here, and then I just put it on and
I just start cutting my squares out. There’s going to be a little bit of waste with this,
but what you are going to get is a whole quilt out of these squares. So I just go ahead and
cut this out. We are not really worried at all about straight of grain or bias or anything
like that we are worried about getting the biggest square we can out of the area we’re
covering. So, that’s how we do that. You get a square like this. You are just going
to stack them up and keep going until you get enough for the size of the quilt that
you want to make. So you can see on this jean, that I can get a square perfectly out of this
side. But on this side, I can’t quite fit it. So one of things you can do, cause you
don’t want to waste any of this, is you can cut smaller blocks and sew them together
to make them this size, or you can have two sets of different block sizes so you have
two completely different sets of quilts. I love to use these jean squares when I am making
rag quilts because they’re awesome on the back and then you just, you know, bring them
forward and rag them so you can save them for a rag quilt as well. But I like to just
go through and go ahead and, and cut my blocks out and get as many as I can out of the big
pieces. Now I want to show you here how we cut out a pocket. So this pocket, this was
a pair of carpenter’s pants, these were Al’s pants. And if you have a tall boy like
that you get a lot material off those jeans. And so what I am going to do, is I am going
to cut of the little thing right there. And I am going to put my ruler on the pocket.
Now you want to make sure that you have enough area above the pocket so that you can sew
a seam along there and you are not going to catch these rivets and your, you’re not
going to have to sew through all this extra fabric. So I make sure that I’ve got, you
know, just enough on there. I am going to go ahead and cut this out. Some people like
to put pockets in their jeans, and some people like to, I mean in their jean quilts, and
some people like to just have them without pockets. I like to use every bit of everything
I can. You guys know that about me. I’m a, I am not a big waster. So now we are going
to trim this top part of this right here. So that it’s nice and straight. And we’ve
got a block that we can very easily just sew in with our other blocks. So you can see right
there, I have enough room up here to take a quarter inch seam and that will be a cute
little block when you start laying out your blocks together. You know this way you see
how that will be a cute little block that goes together. So we hope you enjoyed this
tutorial on making a jean quilt out of an old pair of jeans with the Missouri Star Quilt
Company.

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