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Thread: How I miter corners

  1. #1
    Super Member pittsburgpam's Avatar
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    When I started quilting 20 years ago I couldn't afford quilting books and certainly didn't have any internet access to look at how other people did things. I had read how to miter somewhere that it said to fold the quilt at the corner in a 45 degree angle, draw a line out to the edge of the border pieces, and sew on that line. That didn't always come out right for me and I was dissatisfied with the results. What I wanted was that knife-edge straight line I got when I pressed the miter so I came up with a way to keep that nice edge and alignment.

    I don't know if anyone else does this and I haven't seen it anywhere so, here goes with a tutorial on it.

    When I am mitering a corner I still measure the quilt through the middle and instead of cutting the border that length (you need more length past the ends for the miter), I use a fabric marking pen and mark the quilt edge line on the border. If your border is 6" wide then you need to have at least 6" past the edge of the quilt. I add at least 1" past the needed length.

    Sew the first two opposite sides of the border on as usual. Mark and sew the second two opposite sides the same way and be sure to start and stop the stitching exactly at the edge of the quilt, don't sew into the opposing border at the corners.

    Lay the top on a pressing board, making sure it is square, and carefully press the borders.

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  2. #2
    Super Member pittsburgpam's Avatar
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    Lay the second border over the first making sure it is square and flat.

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  3. #3
    Super Member pittsburgpam's Avatar
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    Fold under the top border strip so that it makes a 45 degree angle on top of the bottom one. If you have stripes or something you can line the up on the inside and the outside edges.

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  4. #4
    Super Member pittsburgpam's Avatar
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    Without moving the piece stick pins along the exposed edges to hold them in place.

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  5. #5
    Super Member pittsburgpam's Avatar
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    Carefully fold the quilt top back exposing more of the borders. Pin again to keep them from moving.

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  6. #6
    Super Member pittsburgpam's Avatar
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    Carefully keep folding the top back until it is flat and the pressed line is exposed.

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  7. #7
    Super Member pittsburgpam's Avatar
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    Smooth the border down with your hands and pin on the other side of the pressed line.

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  8. #8
    Super Member pittsburgpam's Avatar
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    Slip a finger under the edge an up to the first pin. Gently lift the material and the pin, make sure the pin stays in both layers of fabric but comes out of the pressing board. Pin both layers together.

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  9. #9
    Super Member pittsburgpam's Avatar
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    Pin, Pin, Pin. Keep moving up the line and securing each pin. I then pin across the pressed line so that it doesn't move as I sew it.

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  10. #10
    Super Member pittsburgpam's Avatar
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    Sew on the pressed line. I do this slowly and I also leave the pins in, going very slowly over the pins so I don't hit them with the needle.

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  11. #11
    Super Member pittsburgpam's Avatar
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    Press with a very hot iron, don't use steam. In fact, I almost never use steam on anything as it can really distort your piecing.

    After I made sure that the seam is how I want it I fold the borders back and trim off the excess.

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  12. #12
    Super Member pittsburgpam's Avatar
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    Ta Da! A nicely mitered corner that is square too.

    If you are using a patterned fabric that you want the motif to match in the corners then back at the step of attaching the borders make sure that the center point of each border piece is at the same point in the pattern repeat. They should meet up well at the corners.

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  13. #13
    k3n
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    Pam - you're a mind reader - I was just admiring your mitre on the thread about this quilt and wondering how you get it so perfect! I'll give this a go! Thanks so much!

  14. #14
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    Awesome tutorial!!! You sure can get a perfect mitre...I will give this a try :D Thank You :D :D :D

  15. #15
    Super Member Kyiav10's Avatar
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    WOW! Great tutorial!! I was wondering how to do mitered borders and haven't taken the time to find it in my books yet.

    Thanks Pam!!

    Kyia

  16. #16
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    excellent tutorial

  17. #17
    Super Member Harmony's Avatar
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    Thanks for the tutorial, Pam. I have a scrap quilt I've been dying to make, but I keep putting it off because I didn't know how to do a mitered border. This will sure help! :D

  18. #18
    Super Member ceannastahr's Avatar
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    Finally directions and pics that make sense to me. Thank you

  19. #19
    Power Poster Ninnie's Avatar
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    great tutorial!!! and love that fabric!

  20. #20
    Super Member pittsburgpam's Avatar
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    You're all welcome. I have found it to be the only way that I can get a near perfect miter. Matching up stripes, which a lot of border fabrics have, is about impossible for me to do otherwise.

  21. #21
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    I have been putting off making borders with mitres. Now tho' I will give it another go thanks to your tutorial. It is great, very helpful. Thank you so much!! Dianne

  22. #22
    maggiesquilt's Avatar
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    Thank you so much for the tutorial, anxious to get started finishing the quilt as I have been fretting over this border for some time.

  23. #23
    Super Member butterflywing's Avatar
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    do you do each border separately or do you strip-sew all the borders together and then treat them as one border?

  24. #24
    Super Member pittsburgpam's Avatar
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    I haven't tried the stacked borders yet. I've seen it and keep meaning to but then forget about it. If I had remembered on the last quilt I would be done with it now instead of needing to do another border.

  25. #25
    Super Member butterflywing's Avatar
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    :lol:

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