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Thread: Tell me about your binding

  1. #1
    Senior Member minibarn's Avatar
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    Tell me about your binding

    I am in the process of hand sewing the binding on the back of a UFO and I never enjoy this part. I am glad to be finished w/the project and I enjoy hand work but I never feel like my binding looks nice, and I struggle w/knotting at the end of a piece of thread. Also, I have had to make repairs to older projects because the stitches break, and I'm never real sure how to fix that.

    So, I was wondering if people would share w/me how they go about attaching their binding so that I might learn something new and enjoy the process more, and have less problems.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
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    I use one strand of good quality thread. I do the lock stitch on the needle (you pierce the thread) so the needle stays threaded and do a quilter's knot on the end. There are YouTube videos on how yo do them.

    When hand stitching my binding to the back, every few inches I put a knot into the sandwich so if the thread breaks, only a small section comes out. I like to sew my corner miters down as I go and I also bury a knot at each corner. With all my starts and stops, I pop the knot through the fabric and end the thread into the sandwich.

  3. #3
    Super Member Peckish's Avatar
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    What kind of thread are you using?

    I use Bottom Line, which is polyester. Do not believe those old yarns that some will spin about poly cutting fabric - it won't. And it's stronger than cotton thread and won't break.

    As Tartan said, there are videos on YouTube that show you how to tie a quilter's knot, and how to thread the needle in a manner that it won't come unthreaded. I made such a video showing both tricks but unfortunately I'm not allowed to post it here.

    Also, another tip - DON'T press your binding in half before sewing it onto the quilt. I quit doing that a long time ago and my bindings look and feel much, much better.

  4. #4
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    I like to use the washable glue stick to hold down the binding before I hand stitch. I hate all those pins biting my hands as I go around. So I use the glue, pinch it with small clamps, clips or hair clips, maybe a few pins until it drys, then I hand stitch with a thread that does not knot. The glue washes out in the first washing.....

  5. #5
    Senior Member sewingitalltogether's Avatar
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    I like to cut the binding at 2 1/2" and fold it over. When I sew the back I use a double thread. Hide the knot inside the binding seam. I make a much bigger stitch than hand applique. Like a nice mitered corner. The binding is a happy part of the quilt. It's the finishing touch. I've been joining the ends by sliding the end into the one already sewn.

  6. #6
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    I’m always impatient when I get to the binding because I feel like the quilt is already done, and yet it’s not.

    Machine sewing is stronger than hand sewing. Having said that, I know people are going to disagree with me, but that’s what I’ve found. I’m not sure from what you wrote if you want to continue hand sewing or would consider machine sewing, but I get my best looking binding when I machine sew the binding to the front and then hand sew the binding to the back (but in order to save time I’ve learned a method where I machine sew the back and then the front, which I’ve gotten to come out almost as good as the other way).

    I like Peckish’s tip about not pressing the binding in half. Never occurred to me, but seems like a good idea now that I see it.

  7. #7
    Power Poster PaperPrincess's Avatar
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    I had enough hand sewing when growing up and never cared for it, so I always attach my binding by machine. I also think that machine sewn binding is stronger. I mostly use a flanged binding. If you sew carefully, the stitching is all but invisible on the front. I also do not press in half. Here's the tutorial:
    Flanged Binding
    "I do not understand how anyone can live without one small place of enchantment to turn to."
    Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings

  8. #8
    Super Member Watson's Avatar
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    I sew the binding to the front and then use Sharon Schamber's method of glueing the back down before I hand sew it. You can control exactly how it looks and you don't have to wrestle with trying to hold the fabric in place as you sew. I've had my best bindings since I've started using this method.

    Watson

  9. #9
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    I do similar to what Tartan does re the stitching except that I 'lock' each stitch. If I'm using hand quilting thread to sew down the binding to the back I'll only use one strand of thread. If I'm using a standard 'dual duty' thread, I'll mostly use a doubled strand. I also use Thread Heaven which helps keep the thread from tangling. And try using a shorter length of thread to control the tangling as well. And like Tartan, I sew down my mitered corners on the back as well - sometimes only 1-2 stitches - sometimes more. Depends on how nicely they come out on a given quilt.

  10. #10
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    I no longer am able to sew the binding by hand so Iput it on the back first bring it to the front and use a fancy stitch on my machine to sew it down on the front. My quilts are to be used and not in a show to be judged so it works fine for me

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