Tu-Na Quilts: Christmas in July

I have two blog hop posts scheduled this week. If you’re looking for the Fall Into a QAL post, you can find it here.

Welcome to my day on the Christmas in July Blog Hop hosted by Carol at Just Let Me Quilt. Thanks, Carol, for providing us with this wonderful opportunity to be inspired for making or at least thinking about gift giving.

Christmas in July 350

If you’ve arrived late to the party, do not fear. I’ll have all the links of the participating bloggers towards the end of my post.

Now on with the show.

When our foreign exchange daughter recently returned for a visit and more schooling, she wanted my help in making another blanket made from fleece. Ten years earlier, she lived with us for a year going to high school and stealing our hearts forever. Shortly after she arrived for that first trip, I showed her how to make a tie blanket for herself. She enjoyed making this no-sew blanket and still uses it. I really should have shown her how to use a sewing machine and then she’d be quilting with me, too.

tunaquilts 15a

This is the first tie blanket, our exchange daughter made when she first stayed with us. She’s under there somewhere. She never liked to have her picture taken.

Tie blankets make great gifts. They’ve been around for awhile but we tend to forget about those oldie but goodies. Now is a good time to find fleece on sale.

You will need two pieces of coordinating fleece that are the same length. I use anywhere from 2 to 2.5 yards for the length for an adult. (For a child, 1 to 2 yards depending on their size.)

Lay one of the pieces on the floor with the right side down (wrong side facing up). Using the edge of your cutting ruler, smooth but don’t stretch it.

Then lay the other piece on top placing wrong sides together (the top piece will have it’s right side up).

tunaquilts 1aa

I think she likes plaid as she chose another plaid but in a darker blue for her second tie blanket.

Smooth this out with the edge of the ruler. Now trim off the selvedges and square it up.

tunaquilts 2a

tunaquilts 3a

She did a lovely job! I see she has potential to be a quilter!!

Cut a 4″ square out of each corner cutting through both layers at once. (For a child’s size, I cut a 3″ square.)

tunaquilts 4a

I made a 4″ square template out of a cereal box.

tunaquilts 5a

She made the first tie blanket for herself but this one is for her boyfriend.

Cut 1″ x 4″ strips along each of the four sides cutting through both layers at once. (I’ve also used masking tape stretched between the two squares of each side and then just cutting to the edge of the tape.) (A child’s version would have 3/4″ x 3″ strips cut along each side.)

tunaquilts 6a

Here again, a 1″ x 4″ template makes this job easy and the strips consistent.

tunaquilts 14a

Try to keep the two layers together so the pairs stay together as it will make tying easier.

Now take two ties that are together (one will be the bottom layer and one will be from the top) and tie them together. Since I’m not a boy scout, I have no idea what the name of the knot is but you’ll need to tie it twice to secure it.  It might be a square knot but it goes right over left, through the hole and pull; then left over right, through the hole and pull.

You should end up with a knot that has the fleece from the bottom now showing on the top. This means that the top fleece is now showing up on the underside. This makes it look really nice.

tunaquilts 12a

Continue tying all around the sides.

tunaquilts 9a

And you are done! It probably takes about 3 hours total.

tunaquilts 13a

Sometimes the corners don’t want to lie flat. Then I just gently pull on the corner once the ties are all in place. These are machine washable and dryable and make great gifts.

Visit these Participating Bloggers for More Christmas Inspiration

July 23

Creatin’ in the Sticks


Lily Patch Quilts

Adventurous Applique and Quilting

Melva Loves Scraps

Sew Many Yarns

Cynthia’s Creating Ark

 July 24


Words & Stitches

Home Sewn By Us

Desert Sky Quilting

Thimblemouse and Spouse

Seams To Be Sew

Clever Chameleon Quilting

 July 25

 Quilt Doodle Designs

Kwilty Pleasures

Creative Blonde

Just Because Quilts

Vicki’s Crafts and Quilting

Quilter in Motion

Made By Marney

 July 26

 Quarter Inch Crafter

Marjorie’s Busy Corner

Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats

Ms P Designs USA

Selina Quilts


Mountain Quiltworks

 July 27

 Life in the Scrapatch

Quilt n Party

Days Filled With Joy

Quilt Fabrication

All Thingz Sewn

Sew Golden A Chance

Just Let MeQuilt

 What I Learned Today:

  1. Christmas will be here before I know it as Fall seems just around the corner. Probably because I’m involved in the Fall Into a QAL.
  2. Every year seems to be going faster.
  3. Tu-Na Helper and I have been hearing the songs of cicadas lately. This is something new. At first we thought this was an interesting and fun sound. Then we did some research and found out that they feed on tree sap. This is not good as Tu-Na Helper and I worked hard to plant our trees and we don’t want to lose them.  We need to find a cicada catcher. Any suggestions?

Question: Is there someone on your Christmas list that would like a tie blanket? I’ve got 2 sets of fleece in my closet just waiting for me to use them: one is ducks and the other is teddy bears. Sounds like gifts for children. 

Thanks for stopping by and do come again.

Karen, Tu-Na Quilts


34 thoughts on “Tu-Na Quilts: Christmas in July

  1. piecefulwendy

    I made one of those blankets with my daughter years ago. Later it became our cats’ favorite blanket. Now it is waiting for a new cat, if we ever get another. I remember hearing circadas when I was growing up in SDak.


  2. dezertsuz

    Wonderful directions. Our church made some for refugees, but I had to be in a meeting that night and missed the instructions, so now I know! Thank you! That would make a great Christmas present for a number of people – and maybe one for me!


  3. Leslie Schmidt

    I’ve never made one of these before, but I know I could do it easily with your great directions and photos. Thanks, Karen. I’m sure the boyfriend will be impressed!


  4. Charlene McCain

    Thank you for the great tutorial. I have always wanted to make a tied blanket but didn’t know how to start. I think it’s wonderful you have such a nice relationship with your exchange student.


  5. Susan Shaw

    I never knew how to make a fleece blanket. Thanks, thanks, thanks. Two of my grandchildren are coming for a couple of days and I was thinking that this might make a great project. It may be a little advanced for the little one – she just turned five. She can supervise. Right now we don’t need fleece blankets. My son just posted a picture of her on Facebook lying across her bed with her head hanging off the bed and she’s flopped all over the bed. She reminded me of her auntie at that age. It’s amazing how they twist and turn in their sleep when they are young. It’s so blasted hot in this part of the country. We’ve been tying records for high temperatures here in Oklahoma. We had no storm season in the spring to speak of, so we are dry, dry, dry. Thankfully we didn’t have tornado season this year, though. We had a mild winter last year, so we may really need a fleece blanket this coming winter, so thanks for the directions. I have tutored inner city kids (poor kids) – wouldn’t these fleece blankets be a nice Christmas gift for each of them? Merry Christmas in July


  6. rl2b2017

    Hi Karen! That is really cute fleece fabric. I haven’t shopped for fleece in a while – I don’t recall seeing such a cute print. The idea of using a template for cutting the fringe is brilliant. That was the worst part about making these no-sew blankets – it seemed to take forever to get all of those cut! We have cicadas in the Chicago area but not at home in Wisconsin. I don’t know if you can get rid of them. Happy Thursday! ~smile~ Roseanne


  7. Carol S.

    I love that blue plaid fleece and it looks so pretty in your blanket! I’ve only made one tied fleece blanket in my life, but they are so easy and make great gifts. These would be something I could even get my hubby to help out with and the Monkey Boys would love them. Thanks, Karen, for sharing this great tutorial and for hopping along with us! It’s always fun to have you join in sweet lady. As for cicadas…I don’t think there is anything you can do about them. Our trees in Las Vegas would have that shrill buzz every year and it got to where we couldn’t even sit outside, because it hurt our ears. Plus, the creepy shells they leave on the trees are just that…creepy!


  8. Lj Meyers

    Great tut on the blanket. Those tied fleece blankets are just perfectly cozy for chilly, winter, Christmasy weather.


  9. karenfae

    my granddaughter and I made one of these for her a couple years ago – I noticed last visit that she was still using it as it was in a bundle on the end of the couch it is so simple to make it was nice to see it was still being used.


  10. selina

    The first tied fleece blanket I ever owned was a Christmas present from a friend. It still gets used on a daily basis 10 years later. I still make them on occasion for a local charity when I catch the fleece on sale and with a coupon at JoAnns but I never thought of using a cutting template to make the ties, excellent idea.


  11. Rosalind Gutierrez

    I know about these fleece quilts but never made one. My great grandson would love a teddy bear quilt.


  12. Lori Smanski

    how wonderful that you have a foreign exchange daughter. that is so cool. thanks for sharing today. i love making tie blankets. have a great summer.


  13. Tami Von Zalez

    For some reason, not a fan of tied quilts or fleece blankets. Call me a fussy quilter. Glad I follow you as I didn’t know about this blog hop – so off to visit the others. Hoping at least one has made a bed-sized quilt. I visited another hop and none of the Christmas in July projects were very involved.


  14. thatfabricfeelingcom

    Great directions, thank you. I love your post including the non-photo of your friend wrapped up in a blanket. I think this is a wonderful reminder that sometimes classic and simple makes a gift that’s appreciated.


  15. davemelvanolan

    We had a young lady stay with us for about 6 weeks several years ago. It happened to be right around the holidays. Her mom had stated that for Christmas all gifts had to be hand made. I helped her to make a tied fleece blanket for her mom. It was a fun project and offered plenty of time for some meaningful conversation to take place. Her mom loved the blanket and still has it. ❤


    1. thatfabricfeelingcom

      That’s awesome. I wish I could have been that mom, but alas, my kids usually only made cards. I tried. I even have artistic kids with one going on for graphic design. The blanket is in my head now and I’m going to need to make one for Chanukah. I don’t celebrate Christmas but I’m so thrilled to read everyone’s blog posts and grab ideas for the future. You hit the nail on the head with this classic. I sometimes think we over think things and forget about the tried and true things.


  16. Kathleen McCormick

    I know about cicadas but don’t know what to do for elimating them – they must have a natural predator. I love this little project – always good to have a quick one to go to!


  17. cindy

    You posting reminded me that I have fleece bought and in my stash for a couple of these blankets… they make wonderful gifts and they are fun to make.


  18. Linda J

    I love the shades of blue for that fleece you two selected. I made one for my late husband and he used it constantly in his recliner. Not sure if it is still around or not. So cozy though. I have even made a couple for my quilt group to donate in the past. It is fun!


  19. Kate

    What a great idea for Christmas. The SIT will have 3 roommates this year, wonder if I can find school themed fleece? Thanks for the idea!


  20. mspdesignsusa

    Thanks for sharing! I haven’t made a tie blanket with fleece yet. Had planned one, but then my dear son took the fleece for a plain blanket. Saved some time, and he likes it as it is. ;o)


  21. Pingback: Tu-Na Quilts: Fall Into a QAL Block Six Released Today | Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats

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