Ask Jinny!

How do you bind your quilts?

  • I have such a hard time getting my quilt bindings to lay smooth and even.  I also struggle with getting the binding ends to fit together nicely. How do you bind your quilts?

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Jinny's Answer

  • First things first: I do a traditional double-fold binding, cut 2" wide, usually from a fabric that coordinates with the edge of the quilt.  I also cut my binding strips on the bias for two reasons:  first, I think a bias strip creates a smoother edge; and second, it creates a stronger fabric edge.

    Because I frame many of my quilts with border prints, I also sew my binding on differently than most quilters. It's very important to me that the binding "respects" the design elements on the border print, not overlapping them willy-nilly.  So, I sew the binding on to the back of the quilt first, turn it to the front and then hand-stitch in place with tiny stitches, adjusting the binding edge so it doesn't overlap any of the design elements.

    (You can see in the photo that the binding has been brought to the front and runs straight along the printed stripe in the border print.)

    I've prepared a free tips sheet on binding which you can download at the link below:
    Jinny's Free Binding Tips Sheet

    One of the things that often troubles quilters is cutting the tails of the binding the correct length so there are no lumps or bumps where the two ends join. When I was at Quilt Market in the spring, I discovered this wonderful little tool that really makes it simple.  To make it even better, a quilting store created a video that steps you through the entire process. The Binding Tool (what else would you call it?!) is available at our shop and online at the link below, where you'll also find a link to the video.

    The Binding Tool

    Last, but not least, most quilters have become familiar with the process of creating a mitered binding for the corners of their square or rectangular quilts.  Well, how do you handle the odd angles you might find on table runners, decorative projects or art quilts? Marci Baker of Alicia's Attic put together a wonderful video.  It's free and accessible at the link below.
    Binding Odd Angles