Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Beginners Unite! Hand stitching the binding

It's time for the binding!

I love hand stitching the binding. It's my favorite part. I love sitting and stitching down the binding. Here is how I do my binding.

First we need to square our quilt. While I am showing you on a  wall hanging, I do the same thing for any size quilt I am putting binding on. It is important to have square corners and straight borders. 

Find a place to measure from. With this wall hanging, it's easy, I'm just going to use the border for my measurement. Here I'm using 1 3/4" as my mark.

I use this same measurement all away around. When marking the cutting line, I also make sure the cut I made before is straight as well.

Once the quilt is squared measure your sides and add them all together. For this one it is 13" x 18". 

Once I have this number I'm going to divide it by the width of fabric (WOF). I always use 40" as my go to.

62/40= 1.55

This is how many strips I need to cut for my binding. I take that number and multiply it times the width that I cut my strips. I cut my binding strips at 2" wide. Since I will be cutting two strips I multiply 2 x 2 and know I need 4" x WOF. Find information for Accurate Cutting here.

Place your binding strips right sides together (RST) as shown. Leave 1/4" edge of both strips over the end. 

Stitch from one corner to the other. 

Trim 1/4" from seam.

Now press the binding in half. Years ago I read in a magazine (I don't remember which one) that it's better to press the binding with it hanging over like this, and not have it stretched out along the length of the ironing board. Something about stretching and pulling. 

Press the seams to one side, not open.

Ilike to roll my binding up, it's easy to keep from getting bunched up and knotted. You can also put it in a bag and have it come out slowly. Side note: it's important to know how to get the correct amount for your binding or you will end up with a baggie like the one pictured. That is a sandwich sized bag filled with a long strip of binding. That binding is leftover from the first TWO twin size quilts I ever made. Yes, that is how much extra I made. It was funny then, and still funny now! I hope you have funny quilting stories to tell, but hopefully, not binding if I've done this right!

I leave about 6" when starting to attach the binding. Here is a video to help show how I do the binding. I believe it's easier to watch than to try and do pictures. 

Here is Part 2 of the Binding Tutorial, because YouTube editor wouldn't let me go over 15 minutes. Since I have limited knowledge of video editing, and my family was headed out the door for a family day at the time of this upload, it stays in two segments until I can come back and figure it out. Thank you for understanding!

Do you hand stitch or machine stitch your binding? Let me know in the comments!

While this was the last planned post for Beginners Unite, I'm going to add one more to the list. Next week Tuesday I'll show how I put on my labels.  Don't forget we are going to have a Beginners Unite Quilt Along beginning the first Tuesday of September. More information in the next couple of weeks, but you can check out the quilt we'll be making here: Here a Square, There a Square. It is currently a free lap sized quilt pattern.

Happy Stitching!

1) Intro - May 2 
7) HST - Half Square Triangles (My one true love) - June 13
8) Flying Geese - June 20
13) Sandwich that top - July 25
14) Quilting - Aug 1
15) Binding - You are here!
16) Labels - August 15


  1. It's been a great series of tutorials - well done and thank you :-) Over the past year I have machine stitched a few quilt bindings - for quilts that are likely to get plenty of use and need washing often. However, I like the process of hand stitching the binding down - it's lovely to handle the quilt and sit quietly at the end of the process enjoying the finish :-)

  2. My favorite is to do a flange binding and stitch in the flange ditch. I hand sew corners, labels and bottom of hanging sleeve so that's plenty of hand stitching for me.


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