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Binding a patchwork quilt with easy neat corners!

Updated on January 18, 2012

Step 1.

Choose your binding fabric and cut it into 2inch strips with enough length to go the full distance around the quilt. Remember you will need two lengths the same length as the sides of your quilt (the first two sides you sew on) and the second two strips to be long enough to sew the width of your quilt PLUS the width of the binding you've sown on either side.

Sew this 2 inch on two sides of your quilt. I use a seam allowance that is gauged by the width of my pressure foot. Not too wide. On my machine this is about 3/8 inch.

Press the two edges open.

Sew the binding strip to the other two sides of your quilt and also iron them open.

You will see in the photo that the 2inch binding strip is now sewn completely around the patchwork, ironed open and is ready to be folded into place.

Step 2

With the wrong side up, fold the corner of the binding into the edge of the quilt. Iron in place as per the picture here.

Wrong side up. Corner snipped off.
Wrong side up. Corner snipped off.

Using the ironing line that you have just made as a guide cut off the corner at an angle.

(This picture shown from the front)

Step 3.

With wrong side facing up, iron the edge in half so that it butts up to the edge of the patchwork quilt. Notice how the corners form a neat mitre due to the corner being snipped off in the previous step. I have found that this doesn't have to be exactly precise although the neater it is the better everything will come together.

Step 4.

With the wrong side still facing up, iron the corner of the binding in. You will notice that the corner now touches the original stitching line and the fold lines should form a right angle shape. The pin is not necessary and was inserted for the purpose of keeping the fold in place for taking a photo. Ironing at every stage is very important to the accuracy of the binding.

Step 5.

Fold the edges of the binding in using the original sewing line as a guide. The binding should sit ever so slightly over the stitching line. At the corners, ensure everything is tucked very accurately and sharply. The folds should be crisp as if you were wrapping a present and wanted the end folds to be tidy. Pin the binding in place from the RIGHT side as this is the side you will sew from.

HINT!

When putting the pins in place, ensure they are facing the right direction to be removed when sewing on a machine.

We've all got this wrong at some time ;-)

The corner should look like this when both edges are folded in. Adjust as necessary. I find it helpful to pin the corner together with a single pin that runs from the outside corner in at the diagonal and catching both edges together. This pin is able to stay in place even when sewing on a machine.

Step 6.

Sewing from the front, sew close to the ditch or join of the quilt and the binding. This stitching line is on the binding, not the quilt. This will also catch in the back of the binding and finish the back too.

This is the back of the quilt after the sewing has been completed from the front. If desired, you can hand sew the corners together for a neater look and to make the quilt more durable.

These photos were of a school holiday project with my kids! A fun scrappy quilt!

When making other quilts I find neat stuff at

my favourite online fabric store. Check it out!

The Finished Scrappy Quilt!

This is my 10yo son with the finished quilt which was our school holiday project. He did 7 of the blocks with minimal guidance. My 8yo twins made 2 blocks each with my help and I did one and the joining and binding. We used a quilt as you go method which worked really well for the kids and is super quick and easy for me to finish the quilt too. We're having so much fun we're now making placemats! Lots of binding practice there!!

Want to know more about Patchwork?

I love patchwork! The one thing I love most about patchwork is the fabrics; their colours, textures, variations and the joy of seeing several pieces come together to make something new, interesting and unique.

If you would like to know more about patchwork you may enjoy visiting the following wikipedia link.

Patchwork Quilt

Carolyn Watson

Art Print

Buy From Art.com

Great Stuff on Amazon

I love patchwork books and magazines. They provide endless inspiration and motivation! I have the book listed here (501 quilt blocks) and would recommend it for easy to follow instructions on both pieced and appliqué blocks.

I'd love to hear what you think!

Thanks for stopping by!

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    • profile image

      KarenCookieJar 5 years ago

      Nice tip, it can be tricky getting clean corners when sewing.

    • sorana lm profile image

      sorana lm 5 years ago

      The scrappy quilt looks great. I am in the process of making a quilt and these corners are so important to look good. Great advice. Thanks. Blessed.

    • JoyfulReviewer profile image

      JoyfulReviewer 5 years ago

      Thanks for the thorough instructions and pictures ... nicely done!

    • canoz profile image
      Author

      Heather Bradford 5 years ago from Canada

      @KimGiancaterino: Thank you Kim! We were all motivated for this project as it was for our new cat so she can sit on the chocolate coloured lounge without leaving her white fur behind everywhere! ;-) It didn't need to be big or use exotic fabric to still be really practical for what we needed.... and the kids had a blast! What a great holiday activity!

    • KimGiancaterino profile image

      KimGiancaterino 5 years ago

      Your family project scrappy quilt is very pretty. I've only made one quilt and did a rather small (3/4") machine stitch border around it. If I ever do another, I'll follow your advice.

    • paperfacets profile image

      Sherry Venegas 5 years ago from La Verne, CA

      Excellent Tutorial on making quilt corners. Short and not to wordy. Too much info is my pet peeve.

    • canoz profile image
      Author

      Heather Bradford 5 years ago from Canada

      Thank you for your positive comment. Being a very visual person myself I find it really helpful to have pictures when learning something new and 'hands on'! In this case, I referred back to my pictures to help me remember what I'd done the first time! ;-)

    • Laniann profile image

      Laniann 5 years ago

      Very good step-by-step on how to do binding on a quilt - I like your images. Blessed by a Squid Angel.