12 Rectangle Fun Quilt-Along: Binding

We are nearing the end of this project. All we have left is the binding and label. In my case, I use different binding methods depending on the project at hand. In this post, I will share a few tips as to what I like to do when it comes to attaching a binding by machine for a bed-size quilt (I do things differently for wall hangings and other small projects).

1. On a quilt like this where the quilting does not go all the way to the border, I like to stabilize the edge before trimming. I square off my corners and mark my cutting line along all edges with chalk.

2. I then baste stitch about 1/8″ inside the marked line.

3. And trim along the marked line.

4. For bed quilts, I use double binding. I cut mine 2¼” wide across the grain of the fabric and join the ends with a diagonal seam. Fold in half, starch and press. When making a lot of binding, as is this case, I wrap the binding around an empty toiled paper tube. (As I attach the binding, this helps me keep the roll of binding in my lap and not all tangled up and dragging on the floor.)

5. As opposed to the traditional method, I sew my binding first to the BACK side of the quilt, using a walking foot and a ¼” seam allowance.

6. Then press the binding up, away from the quilt.

7.  I then fold the binding over to the front of the quilt and stitch it down with a blanket stitch. The stitching should start with the needle down in the binding’s back seam line, with the blanket stitch catching the edge of the binding every few stitches.

8. Make sure to use the reverse blanket stitch on your machine. On my machine, you can see that stitch #11 is what is normally used for appliqué. Stitch #12 is reversed. I set my stitch length to 2.5 and the width to 2.5 or 3.0. I prefer a shorter width, but still long enough to catch the edge of the binding securely.

9. I also clip the corners a little, to ease the bulk.

10. I really do like this way of finishing the binding. (I used to hand stitch it to the back… hours and hours of work!)

11. Alternatively, I often chose a decorative stitch instead of the blanket stitch. Looks pretty. (:

PDF file: rectangle_binding

Or download from Google Docs: rectangle_binding.pdf

Back to: More on Machine Quilting

Next: the Quilt Label

This entry was posted in Rectangle Fun Quilt-Along |Comments closed


  1. CW
    Posted October 5, 2010 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

    Thankyou for sharing your work and taking so much trouble to illustrate all your methods. It is a great help to learners.

  2. Jean
    Posted October 5, 2010 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

    OH I’ve used this method too, I love it…I love my quilt, not quite as far along as you, lol, but do have the borders ready to attach. I will send pictures when finished.. Thanks for all the fun.

    Hope all is well with you and yours, safe and sound.


  3. Mary Ellen Tardiff
    Posted October 6, 2010 at 8:02 am | Permalink

    I had never thought of using my decorative stitches on a binding. What a great idea – and probably a time saver, too. Thanks for the inspiration and all the rest that you do.

  4. Posted October 6, 2010 at 11:13 am | Permalink

    I’ll edit your listing on the other blog (not a problem!) it’s the first week ever so it’s hard to get into the swing of things 🙂

    I forgot to mention on your blog that I had a best friend named Angeles Padilla (but we all called her Angie) I’m assuming you speak Spanish (I do too.) My brother in law lived in Ecuador for about 2 years (I don’t remember where I’ll have to ask him)
    My love of avocados comes from growing up in California and we lived at one house for several years and it had a huge avocado tree in the back yard. All you can eat avocados!! yum. Now I have to buy them at $1+ each!

    Thanks for stopping by!

  5. Posted October 7, 2010 at 10:37 am | Permalink

    What an EXCELLENT way to bind your quilt….Thanks!

  • Angie Padilla

    I am a self-learner. I taught myself to sew and to quilt. And I taught myself how to draw. I am learning how to dye my own fabrics and am dabbling with mixed media. I am a quilt designer and teacher, and design and publish my own line of quilt patterns. With this blog I would like to share the bits and pieces of my life.

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