I am so excited for today to finally get here guys! Because today is the start of a full week of handmade holiday gift tutorials here on Wholefully. I’ve shared quite a few handmade gift ideas here over the years, but this time ’round is particularly special because I’m partnering up with my dear friend Melissa from Bless This Mess to bring you double the number of gift ideas!
If you don’t read Melissa’s blog (seriously, you should), she’s a fellow Hoosier girl—birds of a feather and all that—who just happens to live out West. She’s into all the same stuff I’m into—gardening, canning, homesteading, chicken wrangling, home-cooked meals, sewing, crafting. We’re like two very tall peas in a pod! She’s sweet as can be and pretty much one of my favorite people on the planet. I am so excited to work with her on this awesome week of handmade gifts!
Melissa is kicking things off over on her blog with an awesome tutorial for how to make Painted Sharpie Mugs (that won’t wash off). There are so many tutorials out there for how to do Sharpie mugs, but Melissa did a lot of testing of different markers and techniques to find a way to make Sharpie mugs that will stay beautiful and adorable through all the trips in the dishwasher that a well-loved mug goes on. It would be a great teacher gift! Head on over to her blog to get the tutorial.
And then make sure to come back here, because today, I’m showing you how to DIY your very own No Sew Flannel Blanket Scarf. It is so easy. Super trendy. (At least, I think blanket scarves are still trendy? I dunno. I live in the middle of nowhere.) Very cozy. And a wonderfully personal and beautiful gift to give to someone you love.
I am so obsessed with blanket scarves right now. They are really warm and cozy, and are incredibly versatile. They work well as a scarf, a shawl, a nursing cover, or even a small blanket. Throw one in your carry-on the next time you fly, and you’ve got yourself a nice scarf, a blanket, and a pillow—all in one!
This blanket scarf is so simple to make, I think just about anyone can do it. The hardest part is deciding on what color flannel to get from the fabric store! Let me show you how to make it.
To make this blanket scarf, you need exactly one supply: one and a half yards of flannel. Head down to your local fabric store, and you’ll probably see two different flannel sections—one is baby flannel (which you can probably tell by the overwhelming amount of pastels) and the other is shirting flannel (which looks like flannel you’d use for…uh…shirts). Either flannel is fine for this project, but chances are, you’ll want one of the nice plaid patterns from the shirting flannels section.
Both types of flannel will run right around 40″ wide. Some folks like their blanket scarves huge (I’m looking at you, Lenny Kravitz), but I tend to like my blanket scarves to be a bit more narrow—about 20″ wide by 54″ long—meaning you can get two scarves out of two yards of flannel. Keep one for yourself and give one to someone you love.
If you want a “traditional” blanket scarf that is more of a square shape, just keep it the full 40″ width.
At Joann’s, flannel runs about $9 per yard, and they frequently have 40% one item coupons on their app (and one cut of fabric is considered one item)—meaning you can get two narrow scarves or one large scarf for under $10. Score.
Now, to get started, if you want a narrower scarf like I do, you want to cut the flannel in half. Using a plaid pattern makes this really easy, just pick a line near the halfway point, and follow it all the way down the length of the flannel. If you aren’t using a plaid, you’ll want to use a ruler and a rotary cutter to make sure you get a straight line. Then cut the finished edge (called selvage) off.
If you want a full square blanket scarf, all you need to do is cut off the selvage around the two edges. Most flannel comes with two edges finished, but some might not. Basically, if the edge looks hemmed, you need to chop that hem off.
Next up, it’s time to fray and fringe the edges. Flannel does a really good job of not unraveling like crazy, so you don’t have to hem the edges (hence the no sew part of this tutorial), but you do want to give the edges a finished look by adding a fringe on the short ends and a fray on the long ends.
I’ll warn you. This part is tedious. But it’s also mindless and simple. You can easily do this while marathoning through cheesy Christmas movies on Netflix.
Start with the long edge, and separate out a thread (a small seam ripper might help), then pull it all the way the length of the scarf until it is separated.
Trash that thread, and then start again. Keep on pulling out threads until the long sides of the scarf have a fray that is as wide as desired. I tend to keep my fray on the long sides to about 1/4″.
Now, you can decide if you want to fringe or fray the other edges. I like both! If you want to fray, just do as you did on the other end, stopping whenever it is to a length you like.
If you want to make a fringe, it takes a little more work. You can make your fringes as long or short as you like—I tend to like mine about six inches, and it takes a while to get there. Just keep pulling threads until you get to the desired fringe length, and then take little bundles of the threads and twist them together to make fringe (this is a picture from another blanket scarf with a full fringe).
Once you are done with all edges, run over the flannel with a warm iron, package the scarf up, and give it to someone you love dearly!
As far as care goes, I wouldn’t recommend putting this through the washing machine or the dryer—since the edges aren’t finished, it could unravel more than necessary. But honestly, who washes their scarves anyway? I know I don’t! Instead, spot clean the scarf if something gets on it, and if you really need to do a deep clean, hand wash it and let it dry flat.
I am so excited to spend the next week sharing some of my favorite gift ideas with you guys (remember to head over to Bless This Mess to see how to make Painted Sharpie Mugs). Check back tomorrow for a handmade food gift. Gifts you can eat are my favorite!