Binding is one of those steps in quilting and patchwork projects that you either love or don’t…. Stash Happy author Cynthia Shaffer shares her technique – and tips – with us.
Single binding is my favorite way to finish quick and easy projects. If I am binding a quilt that will get lots of wear and tear and washed often then I will use a double-layer binding, but the basic steps are the same.
Bias binding or straight of grain binding? Binding made from strips that are cut on the bias are called just that, bias binding. If the project that you are binding has curves and rounded shapes, then bias binding is the only choice. The bias cut will allow the fabric to form to those organic shapes, without creating cracks and tucks. I learned years ago that double-layer bias binding is the only method that should be used when binding a quilt that will be washed often because the fibers in the binding running at a diagonal will hold up to more abrasion than fibers that are all lined up and straight, as in straight of grain binding.
Binding made from strips that are cut with the grain of the fabric is called straight of grain binding. Either single or double-layer straight of grain binding works great for quilts with straight edges.
1. Cut strips of fabric between 1 ¼ inches for single-layer binding and 2 ¾ inches for double-layer binding.
3. Press the seam allowance open.
4. Press the entire length of binding in half.
5. Fold back the beginning of the binding ¼ inch.
6. Starting midway on one edge, pin then stitch the right side of the binding to the right side of the quilt, using ¼ inch seam allowance.
7. Stop stitching ¼ inch from the first corner and back tack a few stitches.
8. Remove the project from the sewing machine and clip threads.
9. Fold the binding straight up over itself to form a 45 degree angle.
10. Fold the binding straight down to make it even with the top edge and the side edge.
11. Pin and stitch the binding in place, back tacking a few stitches at the start.
12. Continue working your way around the edges, using the same process for additional corners.
13. When you near the starting point, cut the remaining binding strip off at a diagonal and stitch your binding strip over the folded starting edge of binding.
14. Fold the binding edges to the back. Turn under the raw edge just enough to cover the seam that you just stitched.
15. Create diagonal folds at the corners and pin in place.
16.Working from the back, use a slip stitch to attach the binding to the binding. And voila!
Do you have any special tricks or tips for happy binding? Feel free to share them in the comments below!