We’re coming into the home stretch now!
Once you are satisfied with the quilting, it’s time to bind the quilt. The very edge of the quilt has all kinds of raw edges that will fray, so we cover them up with a double fold binding.
First audition some binding options. I chose this dark taupe-y brown. It matches some of the specks of brown color in the quilt. Since only a small slice of the binding will show, it’s good to choose an accent color. For bindings, I much prefer darker than lighter options. . . consider this is the quilt’s frame.
Set the binding fabric aside for a moment, and pull out your ruler and rotary cutter. Trim the batting and backing even with the quilt top. Now would be the time to straighten up any border edges that got a little wonky in the quilting process. Be careful not to slip!
You’ll have some scraps! The batting can be used to stuff dolls or pin cushions. And the fabric strips can come in handy for scrap quilts . . my favorite!
Remember how to cut strips? You’ll need three for sure, but we’re just at the cusp of needing four, so I’d go conservative and cut four. Cut strips 2-1/4″ wide. How do I know how much I need? Calculate the perimeter of the quilt, then divide by 40 (the average presumed usuable width of the fabric).
Connect the strips end to end using a diagonal seam. This is about the only time I ever use the lines on the cutting mat. Line up one strip end right side up with a horizontal cutting mat line and line up a second strip end on top of the first one, aligned with a vertical line on the mat’s grid. then draw a diagonal where the edges intersect, secure with pins. . .
. . . and sew on the line . . .
. . . then trim with scissors, about 1/4″ away from the seam. . .
. . .and press the seam open
Fold the whole length of the binding in half wrong sides together and press the fold nice and crisp.
Starting to the right side of the middle of your first side, and leaving about a 10″ tail, pin the binding onto the edge of the quilt, with raw edges aligned, working clockwise. Stop when you get to the corner.
Sorry about the blurry pic . . . with a small square ruler that has a bias line, align the bias line on the ruler with the yet-to-be-bound edge of the trimmed quilt (1), then draw a short line (maybe about 1/2″ long) along the ruler so it’s at a 45˚ angle (right in the middle!) from the corner of the quilt (the binding will cover the quilt’s corner, so don’t hesitate to peek!) (2)
Then sew a 1/4″ seam through all layers of binding and quilt. Use a walking foot, if needed. Slow down as you approach the drawn line.
When your stitching hits the line, pivot and sew along the line right off the quilt.
Fold the binding back toward the right so the binding and the quilt edge form a straight line. Then fold the binding back over itself to the left so the fold is right where the red dashes are.
Repeat until you are almost back to your starting point. Leave about 10-12″ section of binding unsewn, with lots of extra binding on both sides of the opening.
Lay the quilt flat, and fold each binding end toward each other, so the folds just ‘kiss.’
Now, observe where the marks are. Pull the left binding end up above the quilt and lay it flat on your work table so you can see the mark. Then fold the binding end from the right so the mark is directly on the fold (that’s the one in my hand)
And place the two ends on top of each other so the folds and marks align ash shown.
Sew on the line.
Finger press the seam open, and remove the pin that was smushing the quilt together. The binding should lay flat on the last section of the quilt.