How To Bind A Quilt

Posted in: Tutorials — By on December 27, 2012 6:00 PM

You’ve spent hours cutting, patching and quilting. Time to finish’er up!

There are many different ways of finishing the edges of a quilt. Some people like to roll over the quilt backing to create binding, or you can use DIY or premade binding of various widths to finish your edges. Some quilters swear by hand stitching their binding, and others (present company included!) are happy to use a sewing machine. This post will show you how to use your own binding to machine stitch a 1/2″ binding. I’ve used a small quilted square as an example here, but the same technique can be used for a full sized quilt.

  • Measure your quilt and determine it’s perimeter
  • Start cutting 2.5″ wide strips of your binding fabric. Make enough binding to go all around the perimeter of your quilt, plus a bit extra, just in case. Note that kitten fabric is not necessary, but it is recommended… :)
  • Stitch your 2.5″ wide strips together to form one long strip. Press all of your seams together to ensure that they lie flat
  • Fold and press your binding in half
  • At this point, you’re ready to stitch your binding to the BACK of your quilt. The raw edge of your binding should be lined up with the raw edge of your quilt. You’ll see in the picture that the patchwork is on the back of my quilt. I assure you that this was entirely on purpose and not a rookie mistake on my part… [cough cough]
  • You can start stitching the binding at 1/4″ from the edge of your quilt. Pretty soon, you’ll come to a corner. Have no fear! Here is one easy way to get a nice mitred corner:
  • The last part of attaching your binding is joining the beginning and end of your binding strip together by following these steps:
  • At this point, you’ve sewn your binding all around the back of your quilt and it should look like this:
  • You may want to trim any excess batting, fabric or threads at this point. Flip it over to the front of your quilt and also roll your binding to the front. Pin your corners in place so they look nice and neat, and pin the rest of your binding down as well. Be sure to tuck in any stray batting or threads!
  • Now, stitch your binding down. I’ve used my sewing machine, staying as close to the edge of my binding as possible. I’ve used white thread so you can see it in the pictures, but you can choose a thread that blends in with your binding if you’d like. If you have the time and would like your stitching to be hidden, you may prefer to hand stitch your binding down.
  • I mentioned that this is an easy and quick way to sew binding, but you should be aware that the stitching for the front binding will be visible on the back. I don’t mind this, but if you don’t like the way it looks here you may want to consider hand stitching or another binding method.
I hope this tutorial was easy to follow. If something is unclear, please leave a comment and I’ll try to help!
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