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Thread: Question about trimming before adding binding

  1. #1
    Super Member SandyinZ4's Avatar
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    I was just wondering if I have been doing this wrong since I am sort of a self-taught quilter. When I am ready to add the binding on my quilt, I always trim the edges, including the batting and backing so I have a straight edge to sew the binding onto. Is this the best way to do this or do you leave it all on so you have some extra batting to add to the binding part to make it not be flat? I am open for suggestions and your reasoning. :-)

  2. #2
    Senior Member tsnana2000's Avatar
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    I trim the edges too.

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    Super Member auntpiggylpn's Avatar
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    You should leave at least a 1/4" of the batting sticking out from the top. This will help "stuff" the binding and make it firmer. Judges at quilt shows will look for a nice stuffed binding. Plus, if you don't have have your binding stuffed, it will fold in half and then it will start to wear along the edge and split, especially if it is washed a lot. Many antique quilts have split bindings just because they didn't fill the binding enough and they were used and washed a lot.

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    Power Poster Sadiemae's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tsnana2000
    I trim the edges too.
    Me too!

  5. #5
    Super Member SandyinZ4's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by auntpiggylpn
    You should leave at least a 1/4" of the batting sticking out from the top. This will help "stuff" the binding and make it firmer. Judges at quilt shows will look for a nice stuffed binding. Plus, if you don't have have your binding stuffed, it will fold in half and then it will start to wear along the edge and split, especially if it is washed a lot. Many antique quilts have split bindings just because they didn't fill the binding enough and they were used and washed a lot.
    This was very helpful. I will try it on my next one. Thanks so much!

  6. #6
    Super Member Glassquilt's Avatar
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    I do the same.

    I do a basting stitch where I think the future seam allowance is going to be. Then I lay the quilt on the floor with my biggest mat underneath and cut the excess away. I am able to double check the straightness against the parquet flooring by lining up my long ruler with the squares. I move around the whole quilt this way - makes the corners square. If I cut off some of my basting I pin that portion to hold the sandwich together. Then I sew my binding on.

    Every time I do a large quilt this way I swear I'll never to it again. Never crawl on the floor again. Never, never, never. I don't listen to myself. When I finally manage to get up I head to the medicine cabinet for pain relief and die the rest of the day. :)

  7. #7
    MTS
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    Quote Originally Posted by SandyinZ4
    Quote Originally Posted by auntpiggylpn
    You should leave at least a 1/4" of the batting sticking out from the top. This will help "stuff" the binding and make it firmer. Judges at quilt shows will look for a nice stuffed binding. Plus, if you don't have have your binding stuffed, it will fold in half and then it will start to wear along the edge and split, especially if it is washed a lot. Many antique quilts have split bindings just because they didn't fill the binding enough and they were used and washed a lot.
    This was very helpful. I will try it on my next one. Thanks so much!
    Yeah, but then your binding has to be at least 1/2" wide (showing). That's not a look I want most of the time.

    I always trim the top/batting/backing even and then attach the binding.

    Here are Sharon Schambers video on binding (there are 3 parts):
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4PE0Yq9iGlc
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u3vHI7rgZpw
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W--xgi4nux8

    Makes GORGEOUS, stuffed, firm bindings.

  8. #8
    Super Member Stitchnripper's Avatar
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    I trim mine and square up as much as possible if needed and then sew on the binding. I use a generous 1/4 inch seam with a 2 1/4 or 2 1/2" binding, folded over, and the binding is usually "full". I watched an Eleanor Burns show once where she marked the sides of the quilt and then sewed the binding on and then trimmed off the excess quilt. I tried it once and couldn't make it work for me.

  9. #9
    MTS
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stitchnripper
    I tried it once and couldn't make it work for me.
    I'm with you on this.
    I know many people successfully use this method but I know for sure I'd slice right through whatever I wasn't supposed to cut. :mrgreen:

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    Quote Originally Posted by MTS
    Quote Originally Posted by SandyinZ4
    Quote Originally Posted by auntpiggylpn
    You should leave at least a 1/4" of the batting sticking out from the top. This will help "stuff" the binding and make it firmer. Judges at quilt shows will look for a nice stuffed binding. Plus, if you don't have have your binding stuffed, it will fold in half and then it will start to wear along the edge and split, especially if it is washed a lot. Many antique quilts have split bindings just because they didn't fill the binding enough and they were used and washed a lot.
    This was very helpful. I will try it on my next one. Thanks so much!
    Yeah, but then your binding has to be at least 1/2" wide (showing). That's not a look I want most of the time.

    I always trim the top/batting/backing even and then attach the binding.

    Here are Sharon Schambers video on binding (there are 3 parts):
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4PE0Yq9iGlc
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u3vHI7rgZpw
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W--xgi4nux8

    Makes GORGEOUS, stuffed, firm bindings.
    I echo/ditto all this!

  11. #11
    Power Poster blueangel's Avatar
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    I trim the edges

  12. #12
    Super Member soccertxi's Avatar
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    I have been applying my binding on the top by long arm. Then I join the two free ends on the DSM and then trim. I had always trimmed 1st when I applied by DSM, so this is something new for me. I like not having to clean off my whole sewing table to be able to get the quilt under the needle. Who knew?!

  13. #13
    Senior Member Kristin in ME's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by auntpiggylpn
    You should leave at least a 1/4" of the batting sticking out from the top. This will help "stuff" the binding and make it firmer. Judges at quilt shows will look for a nice stuffed binding. Plus, if you don't have have your binding stuffed, it will fold in half and then it will start to wear along the edge and split, especially if it is washed a lot. Many antique quilts have split bindings just because they didn't fill the binding enough and they were used and washed a lot.
    I trim the edges. But I didn't know all this! Guess I'll try it this way next time!

  14. #14
    Super Member Carron's Avatar
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    Thanks for sharing.

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    Senior Member YukonViv's Avatar
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    I trim my quilt (front, batting and backing) so I have a nice clean edge to work with. I use the french fold technique for binding. I use a 2 1/4 inch binding, fold in half and then sew my binding to the front of my quilt at 1/4 inch...so that the rough edges of the binding is along the edge of the quilt. Then I fold the my binding towards the back and blindstitch it in place by hand.

    With this method there is no loose areas in the binding as it's wrapped around the full edge of the quilt.

  16. #16

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    I've always applied the binding and sew to the front by machine, then trim all the way around and then turn and hand sew it down to the back. I use double folded and usually trim to 3/8ths. My binding is always "stuffed" never knew any other way to do it.

  17. #17
    Moderator Jim's Gem's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tsnana2000
    I trim the edges too.
    Same here, I square up the corners and trim it all up. I sew my binding with about a 3/8" stitch and fold over and hand sew the back, filling the binding with batting.

  18. #18
    Senior Member yayaquilts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by auntpiggylpn
    You should leave at least a 1/4" of the batting sticking out from the top. This will help "stuff" the binding and make it firmer. Judges at quilt shows will look for a nice stuffed binding. Plus, if you don't have have your binding stuffed, it will fold in half and then it will start to wear along the edge and split, especially if it is washed a lot. Many antique quilts have split bindings just because they didn't fill the binding enough and they were used and washed a lot.
    Good advice...thanks for sharing.

  19. #19
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    Ii trim

  20. #20
    Jim
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    I trim all mine and sew the binding on..never had a problem with a flat binding or not being "stuffed"...even when entered in a show its never been a problems for judges....so I will continue to trim

  21. #21
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    I trim and then serge the edges. Nice clean edge to bind

  22. #22
    Power Poster Homespun's Avatar
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    I seem to be the lone wolf here. I sew my binding down to the front side of the quilt; then trim and turn over and hand sew binding to the back. My binding is always stuffed.

  23. #23
    Super Member Edie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sadiemae
    Quote Originally Posted by tsnana2000
    I trim the edges too.
    Me too!
    Me Three! Edie

  24. #24
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    I always sew my binding on before I trim the edges of my quilts.
    This gives me a little something to hold onto and tighten the backing fabric a little as I sew on the binding.
    Quilters all have their preferences. Try a couple different methods and see what gives you the best results.

  25. #25
    Super Member Baloonatic's Avatar
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    I always trim the edges of my quilt straight before I bind. I cut the strips 2.5", miter-join the ends, fold in half, and iron. I sew the binding onto the quilt with 1/16th of an inch of the quilt showing past the binding edge. I use a 3/8" seam allowance, and miter the corners. I have found there are at least 11 ways to create or sew on binding to create interest.

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