There are various ways to finish off the edge of a quilt. Jinny’s favorite method is to add a narrow binding in either the same fabric as that which is at the outer edge of the quilt, or with a fabric that coordinates with the fabric around the edge.
Double-fold binding can be made from either straight-grain or bias strips. Jinny’s preference is bias binding because she feels it provides a smoother finished edge. It is also more durable because straight-grain binding is folded along one continuous thread, creating a weakness that can cause it to wear and fray much more quickly.
To make double-fold binding, cut strips of fabric four times the finished width of the binding, plus the seam allowance. Jinny usually works with 2-inch-wide strips.
Turning Binding to the Front of a Quilt
When Jinny has used a border print on the outside of a quilt, she likes to sew the binding to the back of the quilt and turn the binding to the front, the opposite of what most quilters do. This lets her fine-tune exactly where the binding is stitched down on the front so that she doesn’t cover up any design elements from the border print.
For detailed instructions on how Jinny adds binding to a quilt, download her binding reference sheet, Binding a Quilt the Jinny Beyer Way.
Binding Odd Angles
If you are binding a quilted item with odd angles (such as a table runner with pointed ends), Marci Baker has a terrific video showing you how to deal with these less-common angles. You can find the video at the link below
Binding Odd Angles
Joining Binding Ends
Getting a smooth, invisible join of the two ends of the binding can be a challenge. Here are two simple techniques that the Studio staff and our customers love.
This is the technique that Studio staffer, Elaine, swears by. Cut the beginning of your strip at a 45° angle, sew the binding down and then use the cut end as your guide for cutting the tail.
McCall’s Quilting magazine has a video showing the technique.
Watch the McCall’s Quilting video