Sunday, January 5, 2014

Binding a quilt with the quilt back

How to bind a quilt using the quilt back

I made a doll quilt before Christmas and realized I’d never posted a tutorial on this quick and easy binding method.  Since I know a lot of you are beginners…this is a really great way to dip your toes into binding a quilt.  I especially love it for small things like hot pads, table toppers, or a mini quilt.

1.  Baste your quilt.  Normally I would cut the batting the exact same size as the quilt top…but in these pictures using this method was an afterthought.  Believe me though…it’s much much easier to start with the batting the same size as the quilt top! 

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2.  Quilt like normal…except make sure none of your stitches go into the batting.  Start and stop all of your quilting stitches on the quilt top and backstitch.

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3.  Carefully cut the batting away (if it was a bit larger than the quilt top).  This is tricky if you’ve quilted to the edge…which is why I recommend keeping your batting the exact same size as your quilt top before you start.  I’ve cut through many backings by accident doing this!

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4.  Trim the backing fabric, leaving 1” around all sides of the quilt top.

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5.  Start anywhere, and fold the binding over halfway…

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…and then in half again, and pin.  You can do this on your ironing board and press it as you go…it makes it very simple.  Fold all the way down to the next edge.

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6.  When you get to a corner, fold the corner up like so…

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…then fold the next edge in half… 

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…and in half again to make a nice mitered corner.  Pin it in place.  You might have to play with the corner a bit, but once you actually do this it will make sense. 

Continue until you’ve folded and pinned the binding around the whole quilt.

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7.  Sew it down using a walking foot, right along the edge of the binding. Sew to the corner and leave the needle in the fabric as you lift the presser foot and turn to go down the next edge.  Easy as pie.

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Now there are a couple of reasons I don’t love this method:

1.  It’s hard to square up the quilt and keep the edges nice and straight.  So I only use this on small things.

2.  You have to plan so your backing fabric will also look great as your binding fabric.

3.  If you quilt to the edge of your quilt top…you’re going to see it in the binding of the quilt on the back.  I normally wouldn’t quilt to the edge using this method and instead quilt 1” away from the edge or so…but it was an afterthought with this little quilt.

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And there you go…an easy way to do bindings!  If you’re a beginner who is mastering bindings…here’s my other tutorial on a Machine Binding a quilt.

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52 comments:

Linda K said...

That´s a perfect idea. Thank you so much for that.
Greetings from Germany,
Linda :)

Lynda said...

thanks for this tip - your instructions were very clear and helpful - will try this out on my next small quilt.

margaret said...

thank you for these instructions, sounds much easier than a separate binding and looks good too

Melissa @ My Recent Favorite Books said...

Thanks for the helpful tips!

Happy New Year!

Teje Karjalainen said...

Hi! Thank you for a great idea and tutorial! Often I have been thinking that normal binding needs too much fabric and time when making something small. This looks great and if we like, we could plan the backing so that there is a stripe with other colour. Happy NEW Year! x Teje

Mokki stevenson said...

Great tutorial. I'm a newbie when it comes to quilts so this is really useful. Thank you.

Jana said...

Thank you for great tutorial. I was wonderring how to do this so I am so happy I can try it. Thanks.

Gene Black said...

I have tried to do this before but I didn't know how to deal with the corners! Thanks so much.

Elsa said...

Such a pretty quilt and love the quilting ~ straight lines are the best!
I've done this method a few times but usually on a smaller quilt. It really saves time and looks great too!

Quiltingranny said...

Awesome tutorial. When I first started quilting this is how I did it because I didn't know about binding at all!

Sarah Marie said...

What a wonderful tutorial! This is also a great way to bind mug rugs as well. This technique is what I used for some of my kid's quilts, and they are holding up great :)

paulette said...

Excellent toot!! Crystal clear instructions and great pics!
P

Amber Colby said...

Very cool trick, and a super cute choice in fabrics too!

Frambooske said...

Thank you for sharing! What a great idea, I'll definitely try this out - woop :)

Vanessa D said...

This is great. Thanks for the binding tip! I'll have to make a table runner just so I can try this technique out. haha Where did you get your pins btw? They are so cute!

Lana said...

Great photos...and a great technique! I am going to try this!
Thank you for sharing.

QuarterMileQuilts said...

So great Alison! I've been using this method for years (it's how I learned to quilt) and use it to teach my friends. I'll have to reference your wonderful tutorial now, especially with such fabulous photos! Best, Kate

Kay said...

Thank you so much for this, I will be giving this a try soon.

Pickletoes Quilts said...

Thanks for the great tutorial! I'm always looking for binding shortcuts!

hron said...

Your tutorial is so clear and your photos are so helpful! This helps me SO MUCH!!!! I create miniature quilts and all is beautiful, but I'm terrified of BINDING!!!! Tee, hee.

excuseme23 said...

Nice of you to share your expertise with us, beautiful doll quilt.

Julia said...

Thank you for teaching me this! I've learned so much from you on your blog. All the way from how to piece together batting to sewing together HST's with using tape. Your pictures are lovely. Thanks again for taking the time to share with all of us who are learning but don't have a physical person close who knows how to quilt to show us!

Allison said...

I'm so glad it was helpful for you Julia!!! Have a great day! -Al

Lilpuddin said...

I love this method! Thanks for sharing a brilliant idea

Karen F. said...

I'm a handquilter and I've been binding all my quilts this way for 30 years or so. The only thing I do different is when I fold the 1" of backing over, I slide the edge under the batting about 1/8" of an inch. That way, when I make the second fold a double layer of binding covers the quilt edge.

I was looking at one of my daughter's quilts the other day that I made in the mid-80s. The binding has worn thru so I need to replace it. This time, I'll use bias binding just like I would on any old quilt that needed a new one.

Rosa said...

Great idea and sure I`ll try it and gorgeous fabrics.Thanks

Angela @ Cottage Magpie said...

What a cute little quilt! ~Angela~

Adrienne @ Chezzetcook Modern Quilts said...

This is awesome! Thank you :)

Di~ said...

It looks really good! Thanks!

thepalmierifamily said...

I was just about to do this on a baby quilt, and it turned out great. Thanks for the help!

Alex Duenkel said...

Thanks for sharing... especially the photos of how to do the corners! I will be sure to give this a try.

Palak said...

This is my favorite way to bind a quilt! I'm featuring this at my frugal sewing site Sewistry next week: http://sewistry.com/2014/01/cheaper-way-bind-quilt/. Please let me know of any concerns.

Suzanne said...

Thank you for inspiring me to try this method. For baby quilts and quick ones, it sure saves time.

Victoria Guthrie said...

Great tutorial! Thanks! x http://www.craftygoodness.co.uk

Cindy Mizer said...

This method works really well with Mugrugs.

Liz said...

Great tutorial! I was especially interested in how the corners were handled.
Very clean and concise.
Liz

OPQuilt said...

In the way old days we used to bind all our quilts this way. Now that some of those quilts are approaching their third decade, the edges are wearing out. And now it's not easy to re-bind them. I know no one plans to have quilts around for 20+ years, but it happens. One day you wake up and that quilt is still here, but now with worn edges that need a new binding (quilt is still going strong). Having older quilts around gives a perspective on solid vs. shoddy construction, too.

Glad you mentioned your dislikes. Since I'm an older quilter, I see also what time does, too.

I love reading your blog, but don't always comment--you have such fresh and beautiful designs (esp. love your new patterns!).

Elizabeth
opquilt.com

Katy said...

Thanks! Used this today to bind my first quilt! :)

Elizabeth said...

I love this! Thank you for posting it! I plan to make one.
One funny thing, I kept wondering why you were adding a button to the binding! I thought maybe you were just showing the width of the binding. Finally, while showing my daughter, I realized it was part of the pin!

Elizabeth said...

I love this! Thank you for posting it! I plan to make one.
One funny thing, I kept wondering why you were adding a button to the binding! I thought maybe you were just showing the width of the binding. Finally, while showing my daughter, I realized it was part of the pin!

Emily Carnes said...

Thanks for this great tutorial! I am about to do this on a baby quilt. Glad I found your photos and detail on how to fold the corners!

Emily at backtothecraft.blogspot.ca

Paqui Galán said...

Gracias por compartir tus conocimientos .. :)

http://dreamspaki.blogspot.com.es/

CarolT said...

I just found this post when I asked google how to self bind a quilt. Thank you for this. I am now helping at church to make quilts that we send Lutheran Word Relief for charity. I wasn't sure if I did the mitre corner right. When I read your post, I found out that I did it right.

Amy Clausen said...

Hi - I just finished a summer pinwheel table runner, backed with a printed seersucker (yay for the clearance rack!) and found that this tutorial was perfect for a small project like that! Thank you!

Life of Here and Now said...

This is SUCH a time-saver!!! It only took me about 15-20 minutes to bind a 64 inch by 76 inch throw quilt. :)

Lisa Clark said...

I love this idea. I am a newbie quilter so I really want to try this.

Lynda Halliger Otvos (Lynda M O) said...

Allison, this is my favorite way of binding a quilt. I have done it this way since I began two years ago despite never having seen it done. I had seen only strip bindings where you have to do the bias folding. Well, once I saw in my own studio the easiness of this method, I was sold. Just like tying instead of trying to quilt on my tiny Singer.

Love your blog, your designs, and your openness and sharing. Thanks very much.

judygold said...

Thanks for the tutorial. This is a great way to bind little items, like coasters or mug rugs.

Lillibeth said...

Thank you for this clear tutorial! I found it on a google search. I've messed up so many corners of self-bindings over the years! I never could seem to get the folds to stay right. My latest project turned out perfectly.

lizzyanne said...

This was the way that I first learnt to bind quilts back in the 1980s and was glad to move on to present day methods. However, it's a very good way for quick, machined binding instead of having to sew by hand on the back. Thanks for the reminder.

Roha said...

Thank you so much for the tutorial. Is it possible to use this method for large items such as a lap quilt? Thank you again for inspiration and lessons. God bless.

Rohini

Rosiebee said...

Thanks for such clear pictures and text. I'd previously struggled with my corners. I used this method to bind a bed runner. It was my first attempt at free quilting and as I was concerned about untidy loopy stitches showing through on the back of the quilt I used a piece of sheeting to back the quilt. I then used a 'good' piece of fabric to back and bind the finished quilt. Thanks again. Brenda K

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