How To Make a Quilt Sleeve

Can you believe that Vacuum was my first quilt entered into a show?! Me neither—I don’t know what’s taken me so long! If you attended the Manusco Quilt Show in Philadelphia PA this month, you might have seen it.

Being my first quilt show, I learned a few things along the way and would love to share them with you! The first thing I learned is that I had no idea how to make a proper quilt sleeve. After a bit of Youtube, I had it all figured out and thought I’d try my hand. Today, I’m going to show you the full tutorial on how to make  a quilt sleeve and give you some tips and tricks to make it easier along the way.

How to Cut A Quilt Sleeve

First, cut yourself a 8-1/2″ strip, you may need two depending on how wide your quilt is. Join pieces if necessary and make it the same length as your quilt width.

Cutting a quilt sleeve

Pressing & Folding

To finish your edges, fold your short ends over 1/4″ towards the wrong side of the fabric. Press and fold another 1/4.”

How to finish a quilt sleeve

Topstitch 1/4″ away from the edge.

Finishing the edges of a quilt sleeve

I like to take a second and make sure that my sleeve is the right length at this point…measure twice, cut once!

Next, fold your fabric in half, lengthwise, wrong sides together. Press.

Pressing a quilt sleeve

Unfold what you’ve just pressed and fold one side into the center. Matching the raw edge to the fold you pressed. Press and repeat on the other side.

Correctly folding a quilt sleeve

You’ll see where these folds come in later. Next, match the raw edges of the long sides, wrong sides together. Stitch 1/4″ seam.

How to sew a quilt sleeve

Carefully press this seam, making sure to leave any folds you already pressed in place.

Getting the right size for a quilt sleeve

Placement and Sewing

Lay your quilt on a flat surface. Place your sleeve on top, keeping it about 1/2″ away from your binding edge.

How to sew on a quilt sleeve

You’ll notice that there’s more fabric on the top of your sleeve than the bottom. This is what you want! This will allow for space for the hanging rod to go, and not distort your quilt.

What a quilt sleeve should look like

Now, just pin into place and hand stitch on!

How to make a quilt sleeve

That’s all there is to it! Are you entering a quilt into a show? I’d love to see it on my Facebook page or in the comments below!

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