Thursday, March 31, 2011

How to make a faced binding

Quite often I think bindings can visually distract from an art quilt. Of course there are times when the binding integrates visually to the overall design of a quilt and is a necessary design element. But for my quilts I find a frame of color around the outside edge of the quilt to be distracting. I don't really like big wooden frames on painted canvases either, so I guess that is just my personal preference.

So, when I make large art quilts, I like to make faced bindings, which creates a very clean finish to the front of a quilt (and you can never get a critical comment from a judge that your binding is not evenly filled either, lol).

The first thing you need to do is cut a four inch wide strip of fabric for each side of the quilt that is about 4" longer than each side.

Fold the fabric in half lengthwise and press.

After I have trimmed the quilt to size, I machine stitch the edge to secure any quilting lines that have been cut and to keep the 3 layers secured while sewing the binding on.

Pin the binding fabric to the front of the quilt with a couple extra inches of binding at either end.

With a pencil place a mark 1/4" from the top edge of the quilt, do the same at the bottom edge of the quilt. This is where you will begin and end stitching. Stitch binding down with 1/4" seam allowance.

Fold the binding back at a 45° angle, place the next binding down and repeat the previous step.

Finger press the second binding at a 45° angle.

This finger pressed line will be your stitching line.

Bring the two binding edges together, matching up the finger pressed lines and pin.

Pull the quilt out of the way and stitch along the finger pressed line.

Stop stitching at the pencil mark.

Trim seam to 1/4" and finger press open.

Trim bulk of seam allowance away at corner being careful not to cut the stitching line.

Trim the seam allowance at an angle toward the corner.

Turn the binding to the back, poking the corner out to a point with your finger or with a blunt pointed object. Press the binding along the edge of the quilt with a hot iron. Then slip stitch the binding to the back of the quilt.

A nice clean finish! 

Be sure and check out all the spring tutorials;


  1. Judy, this has to be the most beautiful tutorial out there!

  2. Thanks so much Judy! Beautiful quilt!

    Also - where did you get that measuring tool? Is it paper? I want one in acrylic or whatever that hard plastic is - lol. It's too early in the morning.


  3. Beth P.9:37 AM

    Thanks so much for clearly explaining this process. It is something that I have wanted to try. The pictures are so helpful!

  4. This is great! Thank you so much for posting this -- I always wanted to know how to do this (my "experiments" weren't working so well).

  5. Thank you so much. I've been thinking about doing some faced bindings but couldn't find a clear tutorial out there. Last time, I wanted to do this, I ended up putting it on a stretched canvas. Very hard to put that thing away. I'll be removing it and trying out your tut soon!

  6. Thanks for your clearly written instructions!

  7. Excellent tut! You explained it so well that even my sleep deprived brain understood! Thanks Judy!

  8. You make this look so easy. Beautifully done. I will try it again because I really like how it looks.

  9. @ Melissa, Thanks!!!!!

    @Jojo, That tool, made by Dritz, came in my teacher bag at festival, it is awesome! I found one here on Amazon

    @everyone else, you are welcome! It really is a pretty easy binding to do and I love the way it comes out.

  10. wonderful, and so easy, I really think I could do it! thanks Lyric

  11. Beautiful, precise and so well done. Thank you!

  12. JUDY, oops. Can you tell I was looking at all the wonderful tutorials we've posted...
    dear Judy, such a lovely faced binding. thank you!
    love, Kelli
    oops, I mean, love, Jane

  13. Thanks for the great tutorial. I made my first pillowcase facing last week and love the finish, but your mitered facing is wonderful.

  14. Beautiful! I knew this couldn't be too hard but I have been a little timid about trying it. I think I can manage that! Thanks for the great tutorial.

  15. thank you judy, wonderful tutorial! i've bound quilts using this binding before but the directions were never this clear and precise - especially the photo of the mitered corners on the wrong size. you do such beautiful work...

  16. Your sewing is just beautiful and your corners are even BETTER!! Great step-by-step, even I just may be able to do this!!

  17. I can't thank you enough for this tutorial! I have been wanting to start doing my quilt edges this way for a LONG time and this is actually the first tutorial that made sense of it for this visually directed person! I will be trying it out this morning! You can never have too many pictures in a tutorial! Thank you, thank you!

  18. Thanks for the tutorial! Very clear and helpful instructions! :)

  19. Perfect just what I needed today.I was marveled at the International Quilt Show in Long Beach,CA a few quilters were finishing thier quilts this way...Voila me too now! thanks so much for sharing!Have a creative week...

  20. Nice tutorial! How do you hang the quilt-with a sleeve? And is it gallery ready with this method? Thanks because I was going to put my latest piece on a stetcher frame and I like this idea better.

  21. Hi Laurie,

    Gloria Hansen has a great tutorial on making a quilt sleeve here
    all you need is a wood rod or slat, then put a screw eye in each end. Then the quilt can be hung by two small nails that the screw eyes can slip over on the wall.

  22. I've been confirmed for your class in Long Beach - weeeeeee!

    Thanks for the info! See you in July:)

  23. Anonymous2:02 AM

    Totally brilliant. Thank you!

  24. Excellent! Thank you so, so much. I have often covered the back/finished the front by simply sewing inside/out but this looks so much neater. And the images are lovely to behold as well! :)

    Best regards from Eva Mari in Norway

    1. Hi Eva

      Thank you and you're so very welcome!

  25. Thanks so much for this! Just what I needed today! Finally finishing a 15--yr old art quilt! Yayy!


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