Quilt Updos


When we think of recycling in quilting, we are usually talking about re-purposing clothes for patches. But what about worn-out quilts? Contessa gives you some great ideas!

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Quilt Updos

When we think of recycling in quilting, we are usually talking about re-purposing clothes for patches. But what about worn-out quilts? Recycling quilts into new sewing and craft projects extends their usefulness while honoring their memory. Here are +20 creative ways to re-use an old quilt.

Quilt Updos



Turn your old quilt into a tank, vest, jacket, or belt. Using the old quilt as yardage, cut out pattern pieces in the traditional sewing method. Consider adapting the pattern for lapped-seam or raw edge construction. Add to the patchwork nature of your new project by inserting complimentary fabrics for pieces requiring more complex sewing techniques; pleats, ruffles, zippers, etc.



Old quilts make great purses, laptop cases, eyeglass cases, even headbands.




With just a measuring tape and a staple gun, you can upholster a dining chair seat (or even a whole arm chair) with your old quilt. Trim and rebind your quilt for a custom shaped table mat. A bed skirt can be created from an old quilt; finish one edge with a ruffle and attach to the boxed springs with upholstery nails. Sew into a tube a fill with beans for a draft guard or door stop. Create custom shaped kitchen appliance covers too!



Old quilts make unique napkin rings, especially when paired with a section of matching quilt for the table runner. If your old quilt is densely quilted, you can simply cut it in large circles for plate chargers or candle mats, no need for rebinding. A quick bunting can be created by cutting triangles along the binding. Ornaments are another no-sew quilt upcycle: cut small ornamental shapes from your quilt, hot glue them to a poster board backing with a wire hanger in between.



Frame heirloom quilt pieces for sharing with a new generation. Sew a teddy bear or a heart-shaped pillow from your old quilt. Fashion a quilt cone for carrying a posy- add a handle and it becomes a door hanger.


Bonus Project

You can even use an old quilt to patch your jeans.


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The fabric on the back of a Quilt Sandwich (Top, Batting and Backing).

Same As: Lining
Binding is used as both a noun and a verb. As a noun it is the fabric that's used to cover the raw edges of the quilt sandwich after it's quilted. This edging fabric is referred to as the Binding (noun). As a verb it is the process of putting on this fabric, and it referred to as Binding a Quilt.
Four strips of wood that supports the layers for quilting.
An individual fabric shape joined with other patches to make a quilt block or sometimes a one patch style quilt. These may be cut from templates, rotary cut or free hand cut.

Same As: Piece

See Also: Double Nine Patch, Four Patch Block, Nine Patch, One Patch
The basic method of making a quilt by sewing many small pieces of fabric together.

Same As: Piecework
Raw Edge
An unfinished fabric edge of a piece of fabric or a quilt block. For applique, an edge which has not yet been turned under with stitching.
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