How To Make A Mexican Blanket: Easiest 3-Step Tutorial

In this tutorial, you will learn how to make a Mexican blanket. The iconic look of the Mexican poncho, with its unsewn sides and lack of sleeves, has become a fashion icon in recent years.

According to history, the Mapuche people, a group of weavers gifted with tremendous skill, popularized the blanket across Latin America. Today, anyone with a poncho draped over their shoulders looks straight out of Mexico.

Back then, the purpose of it was to keep the body warm without restricting movement, and only men were permitted to wear them. Today, however, anyone can wear the poncho as a fashion choice.

 

how to make a mexican blanket

History Of The Mexican Blanket

Of course, Mexico is famous for its Aztec ancestry. The Aztecs, as far back as the 1500s, were already wearing these colorful blankets because they believed the gods were pleased by them.

Early ponchos were decorative items woven with traditional methods, using wool and cotton, and typically would take more than a year to create. Ever since Europeans introduced looms operated by foot pedals, however, the backstrap looms used by indigenous people suffered a decline.

Today, the Mexican fabric is known as a “serape,” usually made of a cotton acrylic mix. The “Boho” style increased the popularity of such fabrics and since then became a celebration of Mexico’s rich culture.

 

How To Style A Poncho

Most people mistake the poncho for a cardigan or a jacket, and so they fail to style them. Do not make this mistake to avoid looking drab.

To style a poncho, you must match it with clothes to suit your look. First, the poncho is quite baggy. Styling with layers is the best route to take. To complete the look, add scarves but wrap them tighter to your neck.

 

Materials Needed

The poncho is somewhat plain on itself because it’s just a piece of clothing. What makes it stand out is the patterns found within the fabric.

In choosing the textile, go for the design you find most appealing. You have exciting choices with crafting your Mexican blanket.

There is an array of bright colors to choose from, weaved out of agave and cotton fibers. Look for the specific feature of the Mexican blanket—the diamond shape in the middle.

Prepare the staple tools for any DIY project. Bring out your scissors and a sewing kit. For added decorations, you can add pom poms to your Mexican blanket.

This tutorial is super easy and will only take you an hour to finish. A poncho is a superb costume to wear on Halloween or a safeguard from rain as a raincoat.

 

How To Make Your Own Mexican Blanket

 

Step #1. Cut the fabric

Before cutting the fabric, have a clear idea about the size you want. With a measuring tape, note precisely how long you want the poncho to drape over your shoulders. A trick you can do is find a t-shirt you already wear and base the measurements from there.

 

Step #2. Make an opening for the head

In the middle of your poncho, you will cut a hole in your head. Cut an oval shape as you work around the neck, or attach a v-neck shirt to use as your guide for a cleaner cut. Try sliding it over your head and make sure your cuts are symmetrical.

 

Step #3. Add accessories

At both sides of the poncho, attach pom poms to hang freely as decorations. Opt for pom-poms that match the color scheme of your poncho, or strive for contrast by using earth tones.

 

Can I use the poncho as a raincoat?

Yes, ponchos are so versatile you can use them as raincoats, too. To make one, you will follow the same procedure like the one above. Capture the basics of a poncho with an opening for the head.

In this case, however, you will likely use nylon as your material since it’s water-resistant to help you avoid getting drenched in the rain. Also, it might be suitable to add sleeves, and a cap, too.

If you want to preserve the Mexican aesthetic, use nylons with bright zigzag or stripe patterns.

 

How do you clean mexican blankets?

Keep in mind how delicate cotton and wool are if you have a traditional blanket since you need to hand wash them with extreme care. If the blanket uses synthetic fibers, cleaning them with a machine is okay. Wash the poncho in cold water.

 

How do you wear the serape?

Since the serape is like a long blanket, you would wear it as a cloak. As with most blankets, it is close to the shape of a square, but the one you have should be bigger than most shawls. It would be best if you draped the serape over your shoulders, wrapping it around you like a scarf.

 

Conclusion

If you want to look fabulous with baggy clothes, learning how to make a Mexican blanket can add a valuable item to your wardrobe. On cold nights, you can wrap the poncho around your body to keep you warm. We hope this tutorial was a great help.

how to machine quilt a baby blanket

How To Machine Quilt A Baby Blanket: Basic 3-Step DIY Guide

Babies love soft things. If you’re a quilter with a little one, it’s essential to know how to machine quilt a baby blanket for them to snuggle with.

You’ll need a sewing machine, quite a few fabrics, and some patience. If all goes well, your baby will bask in the comfort of a newly quilted blanket in no time.

 

How Do You Machine Quilt A Baby Blanket?

Whether it’s your first time quilting or you need a recap, you need to invest in different fabrics for all the blanket parts.

To start, you’ll need the main fabric that will serve as the centerpiece of the blanket. Regarding measurements, the average starting size for a baby blanket is 40 to 42 inches, so you need the fabric to measure around this range.

You’ll also want a fabric for the backing or reverse side. The material will serve as a good complement for the main design or pattern. Measurements around 1 and ¼ to 1 and ½ yards should suffice.

Next is a binding fabric. This material will help hold the blanket together. You’ll need around 1/3 to ½ yard of this.

You’ll also need batting. The purpose is to ensure the blanket is soft and comfy on the inside.

Forty-two inches is a suitable measurement. Remember, the quality depends on the material, so decide what kind of batting will suit the baby. Last but not least, you’ll need pins, of course.

You might be thinking of pre-washing the fabrics before you start the project. It’s a good idea, no doubt, but many high-quality fabrics are color-safe. You won’t have to worry about pre-washing too much.

 

Step #1: Sandwich the materials

Start with the backing fabric. You probably have already noticed that its size is slightly bigger than the main fabric.

The reason for this is you start machine quilting from the blanket’s top, and everything beneath can move a bit during the process. If your backing is bigger than everything else, it won’t come off smaller than the front by mistake.

Lay the backing flat on the floor. When it’s all smoothed out, place the batting in the center. Repeat this with the main fabric.

Make sure they’re all appropriately centered. You should be able to see all three layers of this “fabric sandwich.”

From here, you can use pins to keep them in place.

 

Step #2: Stitch the layers

At this point, you can now let the machine do the work. Stitching is also the part where you get creative.

It may seem like you’re just trying to stitch the three layers together at first glance. However, the beauty of quilting comes in here as you can decide how the stitches will look on the quilt. This kind of creative control is why there are many ways to stitch a quilt.

When you’ve finished stitching, you don’t stop there. Remember the binding fabric?

 

Step #3: Bind the quilt

Binding is a rather tricky task. With a bit of patience, you’ll get the whole blanket finished and looking good.

Cut out the binding fabric into strips that measure 2 and ½ inches x the width of the blanket. Sew all the strips together by the shorter sides. Fold the result in half and press it down.

You can start pinning the binding on the blanket starting from the middle of one side. Make sure to place the binding on the front side. Start gradually pinning the binding to the side of the blanket.

When you reach a corner, stick a pin and fold the binding 45 degrees opposite the adjacent side. Fold it back into itself so that it aligns with the adjoining side and stick another pin. You should see a triangular flap on the corner.

When you reach the starting point, take both ends of the strips and fold the ends down. Don’t forget to pin both folds down.

Make sure the two ends still meet. You may want to press this part with an iron to make the folds crease.

Cut off any excess to about ¼ inch from the folds. Take off the pins, match the strips’ right sides, fasten with a pin again, and sew a seam on the crease. Open the fold, press it down, refold it, and pin it back again.

Now you can start sewing the binding in place. Start sewing with a ¼ inch allowance, removing pins as you go.

When you get to the flaps, stop when you’re ¼ inch away. Rotate the blanket and make sure the flap is in the opposite direction. Sew the next seam by the edge of the last side.

Once you’ve finished sewing, fold the binding over to the back. At this point, you’ll have to sew it to the backing by hand.

There you have it! Once you see how the blanket has turned out, you can congratulate yourself for a job well done.

 

Conclusion

Quilting sure is challenging, but who doesn’t love a challenge? It’ll be worthwhile once the lucky recipient feels nice and cozy rolling around in it. Now that you know how to machine quilt a baby blanket, your little one will be in for a treat!

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