Binding Tips

I was trying to decide what I wanted to write about today, and I thought I would share a tip that always goes over well at my classes.  I call it my continuous binding technique – or to describe it:  what to do with the “tails” after I’ve got the binding sewn around the quilt by machine.  This method is very simple and doesn’t involve trying to figure out complicated cuts or angles.  You know they type– “measure over 1/4″ and cut at a 45 degree angle, sew together and hope it fits!”  Seriously, there is a much easier way.  Here it is!

1.  Diagram shows the tails after binding has been sewn around the rest of the quilt.  Leave tails approximately 10″ long.

2.  Now, overlap the ends of the binding tails — cut the lengths to whatever the width of the binding is.  I usually cut a piece of the binding off to use as a “pattern”.  For example, if your binding is cut 2 1/2″ wide, the overlap of the two ends will be cut to 2 1/2″.

3.  Next, open up the ends of the strip and lay right sides together at a 90-degree angle as shown (with no twists).  Sew from corner to corner of the two strips (think waist band, not crotch) with the stitching running parallel to the quilt.  Trim seam allowance to 1/4″.

The binding should now fit perfectly and you wont be able to tell where you ended your binding (there is a seam in the middle of that photo).  Finish sewing the binding to the quilt by sewing the opening shut.  Now you are ready to hand-stitch.

See – wasn’t that easier?   What do you think of this floral?  Isn’t it beautiful?  It’s designed by Amy Butler.  My scraps are lost in my studio, but if I find a leftovers, I’ll post the fabric line.

It’s a sneak peak into something new that I’m working on.  Do you also have a large floral that you don’t want to cut up?  I can’t show you quite yet what I made with it, but stop back in about a month and I’ll tell you.

“Tune” in next  week to learn my easy technique for cutting my bias binding.

About Heather Peterson

Quilt pattern designer
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27 Responses to Binding Tips

  1. Ann-Margret says:

    Great tip, thanks! 😀

  2. brigette says:

    thanks for posting your binding technique! i do something similar but your angle is better so i’m going to try this next time.
    love that big floral!!!

  3. I’ve always just kinda made it work. . . thanks this looks great!

  4. Nancy Watkins says:

    Neat way to do binding, something I am going to try for sure! That floral fabric is absolutely, positively, absolutely beautiful!!!! Can you identify the fabric?
    Nancy in WI

  5. Great tip Heather….I can hardly wait until next week when you talk about an easy technique for cutting bias binding! Also, just wanted to say that your site looks fantastic!

  6. Nancy says:

    Please identify the beautiful black fabric.

  7. Betty says:

    I would love to refer a friend.
    How do I do that? christy@yahoo
    is my friend.

  8. diane says:

    Hi Heather: ok I’m loving your blog and today as in right now, I’m doing my binding just as you have shown. I have struggled and struggled at times with this, like you said, even one day I was in tears as my husband came home from work and helped me figure it out. I’m looking forward to your easy cutting of bias binding tutorial! Thank you, Thank you!

  9. amandajean says:

    what a GREAT binding tip! thanks so much for sharing it and making it uncomplicated.

    my friend has your cottage pattern book and she loves EVERY quilt in it. imagine my surprise when I found your blog and realized it was your book.

    oh, and your studio is AMAZING!!!

  10. jenny says:

    greatest tip EVER 🙂 !!

  11. Sandy Crane says:

    Absolutely fool proof!! Cannot thank you enough.

  12. Judy Calderbank says:

    Hi Heather……finally after redoing the binding 5 times, buying 2 rulers (best and only binding ruler you will ever need!!!) – I stumbled across your Web site and the article on binding………

    I have spent days, wasted fabric and notions, and still couldn’t understand how to the binding.

    Your directions are wonderful, so precise and the pictures are perfect. – within 20 minutes I had the binding done!!!!

    Thanks so much…. now I’m off to try your “hand sewing technique” – I was able to find the Straw needles at our local quilt store……..

    Thanks again……..wish I could take a class from you!


  13. Pingback: Finished Quilt « Rose Coloured World

  14. Chris says:

    WOW…. Looks sooooooooooooooooo easy..I’ve been doing it the hard way…Wish I would have found this a long time ago.. Thanks so much for making my life easier…

  15. Michele says:

    I can’t tell you how much this tutorial has helped me! I thought I never would be able to master continuous binding. I still have to peek at your tutorial, but it gets easier every time! Thank you!

  16. Pat says:

    Heather, I’m looking for some instruction on how to put French binding around 120 degree corners, like the hexagon Grandmother’s Garden. I never seem to get those corners to look as nice as the 90 degree corners.


  17. Jerry Norris says:

    Love the binding aid and would like to be put on your Email list

  18. Annalee Haley says:

    Love your website. I am a new quilter. Please sign me up for any emails!

  19. Barbara Moffo says:

    Thanks for the great tip. Love your Blog!!!!!

  20. klccreations says:

    Thank you so much for sharing this tip! You made something I was making so hard into a piece of cake!

  21. sewinglady says:

    Thanks for sharing the binding technique! Great info.

  22. TerriK says:

    Thank you so much for sharing this technique. I can’t wait to try it!

  23. Roxanna says:

    Thanks for sharing this method. What a simple technique and no more fussing with special rulers or templates!!

  24. Elaine Karl says:

    Thank you so much. You make it look so easy. Do you make house calls? !!!

  25. Rosalie Hill says:

    what a great tip. not sure what I did in the past. but I made it work. won’t struggle anymore to get through this.

  26. Tracy says:

    Just printed out your directions and can’t wait to try them…this technique makes the most sense of any I’ve looked up! And the “waistband, not crotch” took me a moment but then the lightbulb went on! Perfect way to describe it and I’ll not forget It!
    Thanks for posting this!

  27. B Shields says:

    You showed us this binding tip at a North Star Quilters Guild retreat in Crookston years ago. It was an “aha” moment and it is how I have sewn binding ever since. Thanks.

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