Binding Tutorial – Sewing to the Back of Your Quilt

Binding Tutorial— Sewing to the Back of the Quilt

This is the 4th and last in a series on binding your quilt. There are several ways to stitch your binding in place on the back. For heirloom quilting, finishing it by hand is traditional and necessary for show quilts. I finish mine on my machine and I’m going to show 3 options below.

To eliminate bulk at your corners to help get a nice miter, you need to cut out the little triangle piece between the quilt and binding that is created when you turn a corner.

I chalked mine so it would be easier to see in the photo:
Binding Inner Triangle
With a small pair of sharp scissors cut across the fold line of the triangle:

Binding Snippng the Triangle

This creates frees the triangle piece:

Binding triangle between the layers

Snip the triangle close to the seam line:

Binding Ready to snip

Continue to cut all four triangles from each corner:

Corners Clipped

I use Clover Wonder Clips to hold my binding in place for sewing. They have little ridges that help them stay in place:

Wonder Clip Ridges

Instructions for sewing your binding from the front to the back:

Fold your binding over snugly. The top part of your Wonder Clip should hug into the ditch of your quilt like this:

Wonder Clip on Top

I clip every 1 – 1 ½ inches. That helps keep your binding in place underneath as it has a tendency to want to sneak open and then you’ll have a spot where your stitching doesn’t catch.

Wonder Clips in Place

On the back you want the edge of your Wonder Clip to line up along the edge of your binding as that will make sure your stitching line will be on the binding edge:

Wonder Clips on the back

You will start stitching at the top of a corner, but be sure you have a nice miter in place on the back. You can hand tack, pin, or put a dab of glue to keep it in place:

Mitered Binding

I use thread the color of the top for the spool and the color of the binding for the bobbin. In the photo I used a light gray thread so you could see the results. You will want to stitch in the ditch, here I pulled the binding back so you can see what it looks like:

Ditch stitching on top

Here is what it will look like from the top without the binding pulled from the seam, your stitching should disappear:

Ditch stitching on top 2

Here is how it will look on the back, just along the edge of your binding. Remember you’ll be using matching thread so it won’t show:

Stitching on the back

Instructions for sewing your binding from the back to the front:

The instructions are the same as above only your Wonder Clips will be reversed in placement and you’ll be stitching from the bottom edge instead of the top edge, close to the edge of the binding:

Binding from the Bottom to the Top 2

This is what it will look like on top, remember you can use matching thread so it is not noticeable:

Binding from the Bottom to the Top

Instructions for sewing your binding with a decorative stitch:

Using Wonder Clips as outlined  in the first option above, stitch on the top edge of your quilt, centering your pressure foot along the binding edge. That will make sure your stitches will catch-all edges. This is a very forgiving method to bind (though very unconventional).

Decorative Binding

Here is what it will look like:

Decorative stitches

I hope this series of tutorials was helpful. I’d love to hear from you.

The PDF file:  Binding Tutorial-Sewing to the Back of Your Quilt.

More tutorials can be found here.