2 Easy Ways To Bind a Quilt Using the Backing Fabric

quilt bindting

 Making a quilt can seem a little intimidating, especially if you’re new to sewing, but it’s actually really quite simple. In this tutorial, I’m going to show you how to bind the quilt using the backing fabric.

There are 2 easy methods that I am going to show you: hand sewing and using the sewing machine. I’m also going to show you how to add a label or tag to your quilt if you want to.

Using the backing fabric is one of my favorite ways to bind a quilt. It’s really easy, and you can use this method for any quilt that you make. If you haven’t watched my other tutorials in the quilting series, you can find them here.

quilt binding materials & supplies

Materials & Items Needed

quilt binding material and supplies

Quilt Binding: Method One

Squaring Up the Quilt

One of the first things that you’ll want to do is to square up your quilt. Now, it doesn’t have to be perfect. There’s been a lot going on with the quilt up to this point. You’ve pieced several pieces of fabric together, tied or quilted the quilt, and so there could be a lot of shifting going on. The edges are not going to be even. No WORRIES.

 

1- GET RID OF EXCESS BATTING

The first thing you’re going to do is get rid of that excess batting. Take your scissors and cut the excess batting along all edges of the quilt, making sure that you’re not cutting that backing fabric.

Of course, the smaller the blanket, the easier this process will be. Place the quilt on a big table, and if you don’t have a big table, you can put the blanket on the floor.

2- MARKING AND CUTTING THE QUILT TOP

The binding needs to be cut so it measures at least one inch. You may need to cut some off the backing or cut some of the quilt top down, so you have a straight line and that one-inch border.

Grab your rotary cutter ruler and or measuring tape. Take the chalk pen and mark it on the quilt top or the backing fabric where you need to cut. It helps to use the cutting ruler to get a straight edge.

Remember it doesn’t have to be perfect. Do this on all sides of the quilt.

*** Before you do any cutting, you’ll want to pull the backing fabric under so you don’t accidentally cut it. To do this, take the safety pins and pin the backing fabric so it’s out of the way. Pin and trim one side of the backing fabric at a time.

I love using these BIG QUILTING SAFETY PINS. However, you can use regular safety pins if you want. Using the ruler, line up the chalk-marking sand and cut off the excess fabric where needed. This is where the ruler and the rotary cutter comes in handy. Repeat this process on all sides of the quilt

After you have squared up the quilt and left a one-inch boarder, It’s time to pin everything in place.

binding backing

3- FOLDING AND PINNING THE BINDING IN PLACE

clipping the bindingGrab a bunch of sewing clips or pins and start in one of the corners of the quilt. Fold the cut edge of the binding to the edge of the top piece and then fold it again. Clip in place.

Let me show you how to make mitered corners. Take the extended rolled binding in the corner and fold it so it makes a little triangle and the folded edge is along the edge of the top piece as shown in the photo above.

quilt binding cornersNow fold the binding just like you did, and it will make a mitered corner. You’ll come back a little later to hand-sew those corners in place. Clip in place.

There are two ways that you can sew this. You can use a needle and thread, or you can use the sewing machine.

quilt binding

4- SEWING THE BINDING: Needle & Thread Method

The first method of sewing on the binding, I’m going to show you with a needle in the thread. This is one of my favorite ways to bind a quilt.

I find it quite relaxing and enjoyable, even though it takes a little longer. You can place the quilt on your lap, turn on a good movie or podcast and relax.

You can clip the whole quilt or you can clip about 5 clips at a time and work your way around the quilt.

sewing binding

Single-thread your needle with matching thread and knot the end with quilters not. (watch the video HERE for instructions). Start sewing anywhere on the quilt. You’ll be using basically the BLIND HEM STITCH.

quitl binding finished

Once you sew up to the last clip, you can fold and clip the next 5 clips. Continue this process until you’ve sewn all the way around the quilt.

Insert the needle into the fold of the binding from the back of the binding to the front. Hide the thread knot underneath.

Take a little stitch right at the side of the binding, through all layers. Insert the needle into the fold of the binding and directly across from where you came out on the last stitch.

Then go back into the quilt, and take another little stitch, then go back into the binding. Repeat this process until you run out of thread. Simply re-thread the needle and continue until you’ve sewn all the way around the quilt. Using the same type of stitch, so the mitered corners together. (Watch video to see the process).

sewing machine quilt binding

5- SEWING THE BINDING: Sewing Machine Method

Thread your machine and load your bobbin using a matching thread. Set your machine to a strait stitch. Length 2.5. You will be top stitching 1/8 inch from the inner fold of the binding using. You can adjust the needle to the left so you can use the edge of the presser foot as a guide or place a piece of masking tape for a guide.

More important is to keep the stitch at that 1/8 inch mark. Take your time. Before you start sewing. Bring the needle down by turning the hand wheel of your sewing machine toward you so you can sew exactly where the needle is on your binding. Make adjustments as needed.

5- SEWING THE BINDING: Sewing Machine Method

Thread your machine and load your bobbin using a matching thread. Set your machine to a strait stitch. Length 2.5. You will be top stitching 1/8 inch from the inner fold of the binding using. You can adjust the needle to the left so you can use the edge of the presser foot as a guide or place a piece of masking tape for a guide.

More important is to keep the stitch at that 1/8 inch mark. Take your time. Before you start sewing. Bring the needle down by turning the hand wheel of your sewing machine toward you so you can sew exactly where the needle is on your binding. Make adjustments as needed.

And you can take your, you can take your hand wheel and turn it toward you so you can see where that needle is going to come down. And I might need to go to the right just a little bit.

tip

It helps to place your machine on the right side of the table so you have something to support your quilt while you sew. If you don’t have a big table, you may want to get a chair or something else to support the quilt.

To keep the thread underneath from leaving a thread nest, hold onto the bobbin thread for the first couple of stitches and then let it go. This works like a charm. Who wants those bunched-up threads on the back side of your quilt? Not me.

I like folding and clipping a short portion as I go, or you can clip the whole quilt before you sew. Keep a little cup or your pin cushion close by to put your clips in as you remove them from your quilt.

Fold the corners as shown in method one. When you come to a corner, leave the needle down, lift up the presser foot and pivot the quilt and continue to sew. You will come back and hand-sew the mitered corners in place as shown above.

quilt label

6- ADDING A LABEL OR TAG ( optional)

binding tagIf I’m making a quilt as a gift, I always put a little heart or something on the backside.

I have available some fun editable PDF labels that you can download, edit and print. Editable files, and several sheets of love labels.

quilt bindtingThis is a tag that I made and printed onto this ribbon. LEARN HOW TO MAKE YOUR LABELS HERE.

I hope you can see that making a quilt is not that big of a deal. If you’ve never made a quilt before or if you have never sewn before, this is a good little project. You can start out with a small blanket and then work your way up to something bigger.

Have fun sewing!

OTHER TUTORIALS YOU MAY BE INTERESTED IN

HOW TO MAKE A DENIM PATCHWORK QUILT

Upcycled Denim Jeans – Ideas and Tips

My Top 10 Sewing Tips for Beginners | Know Before You Sew

Have fun sewing!

jan3

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Jan Howell

Whether it’s a new recipe, a fun craft, or some handy tips for your garden and home, I hope to empower and inspire you with skills that you can use to create joy, improved health, and to do it in a simple way.

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