Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Making the binding for my quilt!

I'm sorry for the lack of posts recently, I've been sewing! This week I have made the binding for my quilt. As this is my first quilt I have never made binding before, so I am quite happy with this as a first attempt! I took some advice from various books and other blogs, and made a few bits up as I went along! Typical Amy style! I made a little practice square first and found that the recommended binding width was a bit too narrow so I made mine a little wider.

The good news is I have finally purchased a rotary cutter and board!! I am very excited about it and I cannot believe how much easier it is!! I also can't believe I cut out all of the squares for my quilt by hand!! 

Anyway, I have decided that I'm not going to do a tutorial as this was my first attempt and therefore there are many more experienced quilters out there with brilliant binding tutorials on their blogs! I will post my step by step photos though so you can see what I did. 

I cut out strips of fabric 2 3/4 inches wide. I needed nearly 9 meters of binding so I had a lot of strips to cut! 

I pinned the strips right-side together at right angles to each other to attach the strips and make one long piece of fabric! 
Using a straight stitch I sewed along the line I had marked out. I reduced the stitch length on my machine for this stage to make the seam stronger. 

I Opened the fabric and pressed each seam using my iron. I Repeated this with each of the strips until I had enough binding length to go around the outside of my quilt + about 10 inches to allow you to overlap the  binding to make the final seam, which in my case was about 9 meters!!

 I then needed to prepare my quilt, which until now had been left with extra backing fabric and wadding. Using the rotary cutter and board I trimmed the edges of my quilt to make clean straight edges to which I will attach my binding. (look at those lovely clean, straight edges all thanks to my lovely new rotary cutter!)

I used a technique called mitered corners on my quilt. When I reached the first corner I stopped exactly the length of the seam allowance from the end, 8mm. Taking the quilt out of the machine and I folded the fabric back on itself at a right angle.

I then folded the fabric back on itself in line with the corner and pinned.

I started sewing the next seam 8mm from the end, again using the pin to mark the starting point. I continued to sew along the length of each end and using the sam technique at each corner. When I reached my starting point I joined the start and finish of the binding together with a separate seam.

Finished!! Well, almost! I dont have any pictures for this part but the next stage was to fold the binding over the rough edge of the quilt and hand stitch it to the backing fabric. I did this using a whip stitch which is practically invisible and very strong. I really though I would hate hand-stitching because I am such a huge fan of machine sewing and I'm also incredibly impatient!! I even read up on machine stitching methods for attaching the binding but the finished results just didn't look as professional. So I took a deep breath and threaded my needle....AND, I loved it! It was so satisfying seeing the quilt come together and the invisible stitches give the quilt such a lovely finish. I have been on night shifts so I have been cramming in a few minutes of sewing per night before work, but its nearly finished. I will post some photos of the finished quilt later in the week. xxx


  1. That binding gives it a professional looking edge. I need to buy a cutting mat and rotary cutter but have been put off by the price.

  2. i know, my eyes watered when i got to the till! i hadnt really taken much notice of the prices when i was picking things up. it was probably a bit more expensive as i bought mine in a little independent quilting shop, but i dont mind paying a bit extra to support small businesses... and it really is so much easier!! wish i had bought one sooner!

  3. It's looking lovely, look forward to seeing the finished pics. You've got some really pretty fabrics there. Isn't it satisfying when you get a new piece of equipment that really makes a difference to the results, I might have to consider getting one of those cutters. Shaz x