Saturday, January 22, 2011

My First Quilt -- Part 6 -- Binding

Quiltalong Series:

Here's where we left off.
Now, before you put the binding on, the quilt needs to be trimmed up.  I put it on my cutting mat and attempt to trim right to the edges of the quilt and square it up at the same time.
Depending on how wonky I have gotten with a quilt, sometimes this is more challenging than others!

Now, I forgot to take pictures of putting the binding on the original quilt, so you get to see binding going on the table runner I made using the same blocks.
Allright, so take your binding that you already made, and lay it on the edge of the quilt like so.
You want it to start somewhere in the middle of one side, at least 6 inches from the nearest corner.  Stick a pin in the end, and start sewing about 6 inches from that pin.  So you will have about a 6 inch "tail"

Continue sewing along the edge until you get about a 1/4" from the end.  Backstitch and pull the quilt off the machine.
Pull the binding up so that it makes a 45 degree angle, 
then fold it back down, so that the folded edge at the top is even with both sides of the quilt.
Then start sewing again about 1/4" from the edge. I suggest backstitching when you start this seam.

Keep going until you have done all 4 corners of the quilt.
When you get to the side you started on (the one where you still have a "tail" left), do the corner and then just stitch about an inch.  Like so.

Lay the binding down and cut it a scant 1/2" past the end of the tail.

Put the right sides together to connect the binding up, and put some pins in it.
You kind of have to manipulate the quilt to sew these together, but it can be done!

See?  Sew a 1/4" seam, finger press the seam open, and re-fold your binding the way it was... although now it's connected.

Stick a pin where your seam is and finish sewing the binding to the quilt.

Now... if there's a little bump where the seams connect, don't worry.  See--now you see it, 

and when it's finished, you don't!
Alright.  Now to tack the binding down by hand on the back. 
You're going to want to start at a corner.  Thread a needle with thread that will blend reasonably well with both the binding and the backing.  Tie a knot in it.

Start by taking the needle through in a space that will be hidden by the binding, so that the knot doesn't show.

Then I pin my binding in place and begin sewing it down.

Having a couple of pins helps you go faster.  You can move them as you go along.  

When you get to a corner, 

fold it down as shown and sew around that corner.

These pictures are a little hard to see... so I'm going to send you to a much better resource than me:
Go check it out.  She's brilliant!

So when you get the binding all sewn down, here's the finished quilt.

A closeup of the quilting.

And the back.
Mine measured approximately 19 inches square before washing....
And about 18 inches square after getting all quilty and crinkly!

Thanks for quilting along with me!

Quiltalong Series:


  1. Wonderful tutorial...thanks!!

  2. I'm such a big fan of this tutorial - thanks!!!

  3. lovely tutorial! thanks for sharing!

  4. DONE! I'll try to post pictures on your flickr group tomorrow. Thanks so much for inspiring me to learn to quilt. It's been fun!