How To Bind a Quilt With a Sewing Machine

Transcript:

Hi, it’s Jenny from the Missouri Star Quilt Company. We have a much requested tutorial for you today. A lot of people have asked for me to show them how to sew a binding on using the machine. I love to bind so I don’t do this very often but I certainly can show you how.

What you’re going to do is you’re going to take your regular binding strips and we’re just going to go through this from the beginning so it’ll be a whole binding tutorial again. So, I like to cut my binding and this is personal preference but I like to cut mine in 2 1/2″ and then before I do anything I iron them right in half. So, I just fold the edges together with the wrong sides together on this and I iron this all the way. I do this for two reasons, one it helps it lay down real nice, and two when I’m laying the strips together I sew them together so that they have a forty-five degree angle on them, and it helps me to see where that fold line is crossing on there.

So, let’s go ahead and iron the last strip. There we go a little bit more. I do have a tutorial on how to make this ironing pad. It’s on You Tube under Missouri Star Quilt Company, Ironing Board. A lot of people ask about my ironing pad. It’s actually made with a piece of flooring and a towel but you can see how to do that in that other tutorial.

So, now what we’re going to do is we’re going to take these strips over to the sewing machine and I have my sewing machine right here. How I put these together so they lay at a forty-five is, I open up this fold right here, and I lay this one directly on the cross like this. So, it makes a little cross. I don’t bother to cut off my selvage because I leave it sticking out of the edge here and off the edge here. And what I’m going to do is I’m going to lay my presser foot right there, and I’m going to sew from here to here. So I’m gonna make a straight, I’m just going to eyeball it and sew from this edge to this edge. You can butt them together if you want.

The reason I like to do the bias binding is that it actually makes less fabric together, so, you don’t have a big hunk of fabric that puffs out your binding. So, let’s go ahead and sew some of these together. I also really like to chain piece these, and I’ll show you how I do that.

I just sew straight across, and then I grab the end of this and bring it around, and I lay it right down here in front of my needle, and then I lay the next strip across it, again putting right sides together, and we’re just going to go ahead and cinch that down. We’ll do that a few more times so you can see that.

So again, now I’m going to grab my end, open it up, lay it down flat like that, grab the next strip, and open it up, and put it right here. So, it kind of makes an X, and I’m going to slide that up under that needle, and then just sew straight across, and let’s get one more. I’ve got to do the last one here and then we’ll be good to go. I think this is only going to take about four strips but I always cut one more just in case. There’s nothing worse than getting to the end of your binding and being short like this much so we like to make sure we have lots!

Alright, so now all my bindings are sewn together, and what I’ll do is, you can see how they’re all chain pieced here. What I’m going to do is, I’m just going to cut along here with my scissor and clip that thread, and do this on all of them. So, I’m going to cut right along, I leave about 1/4″. It doesn’t have to be particularly straight because you sewed straight. So, again I’m just going to cut along here, clip that, and cut along here. There you go. And when you open it, see, you have that bias binding that works so well and just lays nice and flat.

OK, the big difference between a binding like this, and the other binding, is how you start it. This is a little tumbler quilt I made using our Tumbler Template here at the Missouri Star. This is Girly Girl fabric, and this is part of that line. you can see it right here and I wanted to bring it in in that binding. So, the only difference between putting your binding on with a machine or by hand is where you sew it.

So, when you put your binding on by the machine you’re going to sew it onto the back, you’re going to bring that around to the front, because you want to be able to put a nice stitch on there. If you do it the opposite way you don’t know where that stitch is going to land. So, what we’re going to do is we’re going to turn our quilt over, and if you’re good at finishing a binding that is so great! Or you have a way you do it. I like to use the binding tool because the angles just are hard for me.

So, again, I have to make 12″ between with The Binding Tool, and then I start by putting on my binding here, and I just leave about a 10″ tail. This is what you do if you’re going to use The Binding Tool. If you don’t need The Binding Tool, more power to you! Holy Smoke. So, here’s what we’re going to do. We’re going to put this on on the back and we’re just going to go around and sew it. So, we’ll head on over to the sewing machine.

Alright, so we’re just sewing this down now. I’m actually not pulling this through, I am just trying to hold it up here. It’s having a hard time holding up here, so, let me just scoot that over a bit. Put this up here and I want to show you how we get around a corner. It’s exactly the same as when you bind it from the other side. We’re going to do the same thing.

Alright, we’re going to stop a little bit more than a 1/4″ maybe a 1/2″ from the end. We’re going to pull this out. We’re going to put our thumb under here and pull this binding so that it meets up with the corner right there. And then we’re going to start sewing down that other side. That’s how you get those nice mitered corners and you want a pretty mitered corner on the front as well as on the back.

OK let’s do this next corner again. We sew to about a 1/2″ and I lift my presser foot and I’m going to pull this around the direction I’m sewing. I’m going to lift my needle and slide it out, and then I’m just going to put my thumb under here and tuck that back so that it lines up straight with the top, and then I’m going to sew down this other side. Those corners are just easy as pie. Alright, now I’m going to finish sewing these up and we’ll meet you back at the cutting table! OK, so we’ve got this all sewn on.

Normally, it would be sewn up here remember but when you’re going to do it by machine, you want to sew it onto the back. It’s all sewn on, and then what we’re going to do is we’re going to bring this around to the front. This gives us greater control because we’ll be able to see exactly where that stitch is going. So, I’m just going to start here in the middle of a side and just bring it on over to the sewing machine. This is actually a fun time to choose to do some fun things. On most of your machines you have some fun stitches that we don’t get a chance to use and this is a good place to use those. I’m actually going to use one of those zig-zags where it (sound effects) you know how it has all the little stitches as goes along and zig-zags. I think that’s kind of a fun one to do on a border. Gives a kind of lacy look.

Another thing you could do, this is a really fun place to add trim, because you have total control over where it’s going. If I took this little ric-rac I could lay it along here like this, and then as I bring that binding over it would give it a little scallop edge to the inside of the quilt edge and it would just look really cute. You could use a tiny ric-rac on there. All kinds of things you can do with the front binding.

But let’s head on over to that sewing machine and take a look at how I sew this down on the top. When you’re sewing this down Some people use these little clips they’re like the little hair clips that bend to hold this binding down. I actually just turn mine as I go. So, let’s just stick it under here. And I actually think that’s one of the benefits of using a 2 1/2″ binding strip. It’s because it gives you enough room to fold that over. I’m going to meet the edge of my fold for my binding strip right along the stitch line. See this stitch line where I stitched it on the back gives me a guide on the front. So, that’s what I’m going to do, I’m just going to sew along.

You can see the stitch that I’m doing is like a little scallop, kind of, and I’m going to stop every 6″ or so and make sure that this folded down, meeting up with the edge of my stitch, and hold it down, and I’m just going to go that little bit of a way. It might be faster to pin it down but I’m kind of a perfectionist where my binding is concerned.

Alright, so here we go, a little more. I want to show you what happens when we get to the corner, and there’s a lot of fun little stitches you can use on these, on the machines now. They just have so much to offer. So, you can see that little stitch it just looks cute. Alrighty now, I’m getting close to the corner, and I’m going to show you what I do here at the corner. I’m making sure that my, I’m making sure that right here this is, I’m going to hold this down making sure it’s laying, covering that stitch line, and that it goes flat off the edge, just like this. So, we’re going to go ahead and sew down there and then right here, I’m going to leave my needle in and I’m going to pivot this. I’m going to lift up this needle and then I’m going to fold this over. We want the mitered corner on the front as well as the back.

OK so you can see the design coming out of here and again I want to show you one more corner. So, were just about there let me get right there we’re going to turn this. We want to turn it the direction you’re going, and then we’re going to pull this out of here. I’m going to go ahead and clip these, and then we’re just going to go ahead and lay this over. We want to make sure, hold this down, we want to make sure it makes a nice miter and look at that pretty miter right there, beautiful! A beautiful miter right there! Then we slide that under our presser foot hoping it doesn’t move. When you have that much fabric you, kind of, have to give it a little help through there. And it emerges, fairly triumphant!

OK I just want to show you one more way to do a corner. As you come to the edge you can press this outside edge down, and fold the top edge over as well. Either way will work while trying to form a miter. So, there we have that right there, and it’s just going to lay down a little miter, and then you can sew straight over that, and pivot, and come down this other side. It’ll leave a nice edge either way. So, here we are with our finished quilt. It’s really just a quick, fun way to finish a binding.

It’s easy, it’s quick, it is a lot faster than hand binding but really, you know, bind how you like. You can see this little edge one thing that you want to make sure of when you do these edges is that it’s something that will come out and grab that edge. You know you can do a little stitch right along the edge, or you can do a flower stitch. Just something that will come over the top of this, so, you make sure you catch that and hold that down.

This is a quick tutorial on how to bind with a sewing machine and we hope you’ve enjoyed this from the Missouri Star Quilt Company.

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  • Tntek40

    Jenny, this was great! Thanks a million! Makes binding less daunting. I would like to offer you a tip as well. Where you are using your finger to manipulate the binding on the corners, (and you being a Binding Perfectionist), use the flat edge of your seam ripper’s blade to tuck in and make a sharper crease when tucking in the mitered corner. I call my seam ripper my third hand. Again, thanks for all the great tutorials! :)

    • Anonymous

      Great great tip!!  Thanks for taking a minute to leave a note!!

  • Alamogal1963

    I’m so glad you posted this.  I have arthritis in my hands and I can’t manage hand-sewing for any lenght of time.  I made the half-hexi runner yesterday and it turned out beautiful on the front but hopefully nobody looks at the back!   Wish I would have seen this before I put the binding on.  You make it look SO easy!  I never would have thought to use a decorative stitch on the front.  Now I’m motivated for another try.  Thanks!

    • Sarah

      Great to hear!! Enjoy, and good luck on your future projects.

  • Willis Severe

    For a beginner, this is fantastic

    • Sarah

      Thanks!

  • Rossy Alvarez

    Dear Jenny
    I love all your videos but this was Amazing.
    Hugs from Berlin

  • Bjhope57

    But how do you join the tails?

    • Anonymous

      – Please reply above this line –

      ———————————————————–
      ## Jenny Doan replied, on Jan 28 @ 5:28am (UTC):

      Hi Bj, I join the tails the same way I do for regular binding. I leave about 6 inches of tails on each side and then sew them on the bias and just sew them down like normal. I also use a binding tool to get them perfect.
      Have a great day!
      Jenny
      Doan
      info@missouriquiltco.com

      (888)
      571-1122
      http://www.MissouriQuiltCo.com

      ———————————————————–
      ## Conversation started by Disqus, on Jan 27 @ 7:39pm (UTC):

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  • Lola

    Very good.  However, you did not show how you put the two pieces together.  I like to tuck my under the first piece of binding. 

  • Bitner05

    Thank you! Iwent to my local quilt shop for help and they wouldn’t. This was great. I feel so confident now

    • Sarah

      Glad we could help!  :)  Good luck to you on your binding!  Have fun, you will do fine!

  • Kathy

    I LOVE all the tutorials I have watched. Jenny, your directions and modeling are terrific. Thank-you so much.

  • Shelley

    Hi I just ordered the binding tool, and I am still practicing making smaller things like coasters and place mats.  I noticed in this video, you mentioned there needs to be 12″ when using the tool.  Is there a way to make this amount smaller and still use the tool?

    • Anonymous

      – Please reply above this line –

      ———————————————————–
      ## Jenny Doan replied, on Mar 1 @ 3:12am (UTC):

      Hi Shelley, There really isn’t any way to use this with the binding tool….I am working on a tutorial for ending binding on these shorter projects…It you live close to the shop, come in and I will show you! Have a great day!
      Jenny
      Doan
      info@missouriquiltco.com

      (888)
      571-1122
      http://www.MissouriQuiltCo.com

      ———————————————————–
      ## Conversation started by Disqus, on Feb 27 @ 11:45pm (UTC):

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  • fnewiest

    I started quilting a year ago, and I dreaded the binding, trying to make a perfect 1/4 inch seam and perfect corners.  Your tutorial made it look so easy, and you were so relaxed, I thought I would give it another try. So I used a 3/8 seam with a 2 1/2 inch binding and it worked like a charm!  When you said to stop sewing about 1/2 inch from the corner it made all the difference, now my corners turn so nicely.  I bound three quilts in 2 days, without a hitch!  Thank you!

    • Sarah

      Awesome!  Great to hear that!!

  • Pilgrimquilt1

    I always like to have extra binding as well.  When I finish putting the binding on I cut off the extra and put in my binding basket.  Then I join all the extra pieces from different binding and use as a scrappy binding for my scrappy quilts.  No waste.  Sometimes I open up the extra binding iron it out flat and use these pieces to make a strip quilt on a muslin fabric in a flip and sew fashion.  Waste not!  Use it up.  Love all the tutorials.

    • Sarah

      Great idea! Thanks for sharing!

  • Dvanleuken

    I likeit very much

  • Neuharth Lisa

    Thanks Jenny! That was great. I have been dreading the bindings on my quilts but thanks to you I’ll have some new tips to try. I love the Rick Rack idea and also using a decorative stitch. Thanks for all your wonderful informative tutorials.

    • Sarah

      Best of luck to you!  You will have the binding down in no time!

  • Bettyboop32846

    jenny, the video is excelant but why didn’t you show how to connect the binding. i guess that’s where you use the binding tool. how do you connect the binding?

    • Anonymous

      – Please reply above this line –

      ———————————————————–
      ## Jenny Doan replied, on May 2 @ 12:17pm (UTC):

      I get asked that alot and when I made the video, I assumed that was something everyone knew, Maybe it is time for a new tutorial….Thanks for asking and I will see what we can do!
      Have a great day!
      Jenny Doan
      info@missouriquiltco.com

      (888) 571-1122
      http://www.MissouriQuiltCo.com

      ———————————————————–
      ## Conversation started by Disqus, on Apr 30 @ 6:40pm (UTC):

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  • Linda

    Jenny you are awesome! This 13 minute video quickly moves along with so much great information. Thanks so much. Just awesome.

    • Sarah

      You are very welcome!

  • Linda

    Jenny you are awesome! This 13 minute video quickly moves along with so much great information. Thanks so much. Just awesome.

  • Kathy V

    Thank you SO much for all of your tutorials.  I’m just starting out quilting and your website is so helpful!  Keep it up.

    • Sarah

      Thanks Kathy!  So glad you found us and are enjoying the tutorials!  

  • Fabulaj1

    I am brandy new to quilting, and loved this video! Thank you! I do have a couple of questions though…I did binding on a tea cozy and when I stitched the binding on the top, you could see my stitches on the bottom. Should I be sewing a 1/4 or 1/2 inch seam when I sew the binding on the back? And then on the front? Sorry, but this is all completely new to me. I also would like to ask about the machine you used. I have a $60 brother from Walmart that is ok, but I’m looking to upgrade. Do you like the one I the video? Any other recommendations? Thanks so much! p.s. love the deal of the day, quilters cash, and $5 shipping!

    • Anonymous

      – Please reply above this line –

      ———————————————————–
      ## Jenny Doan replied, on May 24 @ 3:18am (UTC):

      Thank you so much for your kind words. I use a 12 year old Janome. I love it but I am convinced that all you need is a machine that sews. On the binding If i do machine sew my binding, I sew it on the back using a 1/4 inch seam and bring it around to the front and then use a stitch that covers over most of the binding. I hope this helps!
      Have a great day!
      Jenny Doan
      info@missouriquiltco.com

      (888) 571-1122
      http://www.MissouriQuiltCo.com

      ———————————————————–
      ## Conversation started by Disqus, on May 20 @ 2:46am (UTC):

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  • craftycath123

    Hi Jenny.  I can’t tell you how inspirational you are, you make your tutorials SEW easy to follow.  I had hardly even threaded a needle before taking up quilting last September and I have almost become obsessed with my hobby since.

    One of my biggest problems has been binding the edges of my quilts and I’m quite sure you’re tutorial on the subject is very straightforward but for the life of me I just cannot get it.  Just a suggestion for numb skulls like me but do you think you could do a demo with say black material and white cotton so that the contrast is more obvious. 
    Thanks so much
    Cath  (uk)

    • Anonymous

      – Please reply above this line –

      ———————————————————–
      ## Jenny Doan replied, on Jun 1 @ 4:21am (UTC):

      Dear Cathy, What part of the binding are you not getting? I can help you, and the contrast idea is a great one! Thanks also for your kind words!
      Have a great day!
      Jenny Doan
      info@missouriquiltco.com

      (888) 571-1122
      http://www.MissouriQuiltCo.com

      ———————————————————–
      ## Conversation started by Disqus, on May 27 @ 6:49pm (UTC):

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      craftycath123 (unregistered)

  • robcoll

    Hi, I really appreciate your tutorial on binding.  I’m working on my first quilt top right now.  I do have a question.  What patterns are the two quilts on the wall behind you in this tutorial?  I like them both very much!

  • Rita8855

    Thank You Jenny!  This was the first quilt I’ve made that I didn’t struggle with the binding!  It came out perfect, thanks to your instructions!  I did do one extra step, and that was to iron the binding back to the front after I was finished sewing it on the back.  Not a big deal, but it helped me as it laid flatter for me to sew the front.  All of your tutorials have been extremely helpful.  Thanks again! 

  • http://www.rhayaderprecision.co.uk/ precision engineers

    If the machine seems to run hard, it may be caused by lint and dirt built up inside a bearing. As you are lubricating the machine tip the head and flush the parts underneath the machine. Run the machine by hand wheel again until it functions smoothly.

  • Emma

    Hi Jenny, I am so glad I’ve found your page. I have been inspired! Thanks so much for this wonderful video. It’s so helpful. I have a quick question with regards to this quilt you’re making here:
    Is the white fabric on the back of the quilt simply the batting or is that the back of the finished quilt? I’m just not sure when in the quilting process I add the binding. Do I add the binding last of all? I have never done binding before, only borders. I’ve been taught to lay the batting on the bottom, then the top of the quilt, then the backing of the quilt face down on the top of the quilt. Sew all around the edge, leave a hole and turn inside out, then sew up the hole. Do you make quilts a different way in order to add on binding or would this way work? Does that make sense?
    Thanks so much
    Emma

  • Dianna

    Thank you for the video on binding. i’m ripping out my first try. The miters seemed to stitched together? You also used a 10 in loose piece when you started. What happened to it? Also how do you join the binding when you go all the way around the binding on the back, before you fold over?

  • Christine Sherman

    I started quilting a year ago, and was just looking back through your tutorials. I wanted to say thank you. Your site was the first one I came across and I taught myself so much from watching you. I used this tutorial to sew my first binding on. I’ve come a long way since I first watched this, and wanted to say thank you for all you guys do! With your help I have found a hobby that I love, love, love!!

    • JenM

      Thank you, Christine! So happy you have been quilting along with us and found a new love!!

  • Susan

    I just had to add my thanks. I just bound a quilt and found your instructions so clear. Thank you just isn’t enough – I love your tutorials and had to let you know how appreciative I am. Thank you!!!

  • Ellen

    I just showed my dear friend how to make a quilt using strips ,but when it came to the binding I was at a lose so I told her to go to your site and now she’s hooked! Thanks for being so helpful!