Jelly Roll Rug Tutorial | Life with Jane

Jelly Roll Rug Tutorial

This rug is inspired by Roma Lambson's Jelly Roll Rug. You can support the designer, Roma Lambson, by purchasing her pattern. She has additional information that will be helpful when making your rug.

Click here to view the Rectangular Jelly Roll Rug Tutorial!

• Fabric or Jelly Roll
• Thread
• Wonder clips (I used clothes pins)
• Iron
• Sewing machine with straight and zigzag stitch

Iron your fabric to press out any major creases.

Start by measuring and cutting 2.5" wide strips of fabric on the bias. I used approximately 2 metres of ~ 44" wide 100% printed quilting cotton by David Textiles Inc purchased from a local shop many years ago. You can skip this step by purchasing a jelly roll. However, I found that the extra give of the bias allowed the rug to stay flat (I saw that some people had trouble with the rug not laying flat). Ironing with steam after every few rounds also ensures that the rug lays flat, but that will be discussed in more detail later.

Lay your fabric out on a table or floor. Take the top corner and match it up with the bottom edge, forming a triangle.

Cut off the excess fabric.

Cut along the folded edge. You will now have two triangles. 

Fold the fabric in half from the top corner to the bottom corner.

Rotate it so that the cut side is on the left and the folded side is on the bottom.

Measure and mark 2.5" strips vertically, then cut.

Attach the cut strips of fabric together by placing the ends together (right sides of fabric facing) as shown.

Sew along the diagonal.

Do this with all the pieces of fabric; there is no need to cut the threads until you have finished sewing all the strips together.

Now snip the threads and you will have a continuous strip of fabric.

Iron the seams open.

Measure and cut 2.5" strips of batting or use pre-cut batting such as Bosal Katahdin. If you prefer, you can also purchase a pattern kit which includes the pattern and two rolls of Bosal Katahdin batting on-a-roll. I used 1/2 metre of 102" cotton batting.

Attach the strips by sewing them together with a zigzag stitch.

Place the batting strip on the wrong side of the fabric strip.

Fold one side in to the middle, then the other, and then together. Clip in place. Do this for the whole strip. I used clothes pins because that is what I had on hand, but I think wonder clips will work much better.

For the ends of the strip, just fold the edge in 1/4" - 1/2" and then repeat the prior step.

Change your needle to a denim needle for added strength and durability.

Also, change your thread to a matching or contrasting colour. You may want to wind extra bobbins at this point. I ended up using about 10 full bobbins to sew the entire rug. In total, I used approximately 700 yards of thread.

Using 1/8" or 1/4" seam allowance (I used 1/8"), sew along the folded edges. Remember to backstitch at the beginning and end for added security.

It should look like this. It is up to you what size of stitch length you would like to use, just make sure it is secure and that all raw ends are tucked in.

At this point, you can roll the fabric rope into a ball to stop it from getting tangled. I ended up with almost 100 feet of rope.

Now, the sewing of the rug begins! Fold the strip over on itself. Keep in mind that the length of the very middle of the rug and the amount of rounds determine the overall shape (length and width) of the completed rug. The pattern explains this in further detail.

Using a wide but short zigzag stitch, sew the strips together in a circular pattern. For reference, I used a width of 5 and a length of 1. As it gets larger, you may wish to use a sewing machine extension table or household items such as books or pans to keep it level with the machine. I was working in a small space so I didn't use anything and it still turned out fine.

The first few curves are difficult to sew, but just go slowly and be patient. You may have some puckering as I did. This is fine. To prevent buckling do not pull or force the fabric, just guide it and let the sewing machine do the work.

Every few rows take it off the machine and iron it with steam. This will help it lay flat.

This rug takes a while to sew, but just take your time, especially around the curves, readjusting as necessary.

When you come to the end, just guide the end of the rope under the rug on a curve so that it looks like it disappears into the rug. This will make the end less visible on the finished product. Backstitch and take it off the machine, then give it a good press. The finished size of my rug is 33" x 26".

Enjoy your rug! This was a really fun project and I'm pleased with the results.

To view the Rectangular Jelly Roll Rug Tutorial, click here!

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.

All photos are my own. Please ask permission before reposting.


  1. instead of buying a jelly roll how much fabric did you use?

    1. Hi annee! I used approximately 2 metres of ~ 44" wide quilting cotton.

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  4. I love this idea with the batting. Never thought of it. Wanted to mention that you can make the bias binding in one long piece with just two seams. Check out the info on I found it on pinterest. A 20" square makes 191" of 2" strips. Works great.

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