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Binding Question

Old 06-06-2022, 08:08 AM
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Question Binding Question

I have always ironed the binding prior to stitching it onto the quilt. I donít pin the binding on. I have read that some of you donít iron it . Iíd like to know the advantage of not ironing. Iím thinking it would be fiddly to get the raw edges even as you stitch the binding on. Also with no fold wouldnít it be more difficult to do the ladder stitch?

I like to try new things so for those of you who donít iron your binding please explain why thatís your preference..
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Old 06-06-2022, 08:22 AM
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I used to press the binding in half too, but after reading a recommendation on this board I tried not pressing it. And once I tried it, I liked it! When the binding isn't pressed, the fold falls naturally. It isn't hard at all to keep the raw edges even. I don't use anything to hold the binding while machine sewing to the front. I sometimes use wonder clips to hold the binding as I hand sew it to the back, and sometimes I don't.
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Old 06-06-2022, 08:33 AM
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I usually use bias binding and I have baste the raw edges together with a narrow longish zigzag stitc. Length set at 3 ansd width set at 1 about 1/ 8 inch from the raw edges.

I do not press the binding in half either - because the outer layer has to " go further" than the inner layer.

Think about how the wheels track when making tight turns. The wheel on the outside of the turn has to cover more distance than the wheel on the inside of the turn.
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Old 06-06-2022, 10:04 AM
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I bind quilts professionally, and I never press binding in half.

Bear stated what I was going to say, but to further illustrate what we mean:

If you think about a track, as in running sports, Olympics, etc, the inside lane is shorter than the outside lane. Convert that image to the fold of binding fabric that you curve around the raw edge of a quilt. The inner layer of fabric will be shorter than the outer layer of fabric, and if you press the fold first, the inner layer will bunch up on the inside. However, if you *don't* press the fold, the fabric is then allowed to adjust naturally and will sit neater at the edge of the quilt, and you will get a nice, even, full binding. It may be only 2 or 3 threads-width worth, but believe me, it DOES make a difference.

Side benefit - you save the time and labor of skipping a step. 😁

p.s. I don't use the ladder stitch. Personal preference.
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Old 06-06-2022, 10:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Peckish View Post
I bind quilts professionally, and I never press binding in half.

Bear stated what I was going to say, but to further illustrate what we mean:

If you think about a track, as in running sports, Olympics, etc, the inside lane is shorter than the outside lane. Convert that image to the fold of binding fabric that you curve around the raw edge of a quilt. The inner layer of fabric will be shorter than the outer layer of fabric, and if you press the fold first, the inner layer will bunch up on the inside. However, if you *don't* press the fold, the fabric is then allowed to adjust naturally and will sit neater at the edge of the quilt, and you will get a nice, even, full binding. It may be only 2 or 3 threads-width worth, but believe me, it DOES make a difference.

Side benefit - you save the time and labor of skipping a step. 😁

p.s. I don't use the ladder stitch. Personal preference.

Much better illustration for what I was trying to say .
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Old 06-06-2022, 10:31 AM
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I also sew the edges of the quilt together before binding it - that way I only have to keep keep "two" edges lined up.

It probably is "more" work than most are willing to do, but I missed the bottom layer of the quilt a couple of times, and was more annoyed at that, than to sew the edges together first.

I trim the quilt sandwich before binding.
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Old 06-06-2022, 10:37 AM
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Some good visuals, Ladies!!

That being said, I haven't been convinced yet that it makes a huge difference. Maybe? my quilt sandwiches are not thick enough that there is a difference there?

Here's what I do ...
Cut binding. "Clump" it on the ironing board, spraying the clump with Best Press. Then fold and press along the length. Depending on how long the cut binding is, then every once in awhile I respray the clump. IOW not every inch of the binding gets the benefit, but mostly it does.

Like you JanieW, I do not pin the binding to the quilt, as I machine sew it onto the front. One more step before I do the hand stitching. JanieW you will remember I lost you on this one before! I do a long machine basting stitch around the quilt, stitching the raw edge of the binding to the quilt edge, to hold all in place. This stitching will be hidden, once the binding is flipped over and sewn in place. (Better explanation this time??)

Then I flip the binding to the back and hand sew. I use those hair barrette type clips to hold in place and only pin at the corners. I keep it pulled around the sandwich edge, so I have a good tight/filled binding and watch the corners are squared up nicely before hand stitching. Ladder stitch all the way, for me!!

I don't have any problems with any bulk making the fold to not want to lay where the pressed fold is. Like I said at the start, maybe I don't have a thick enough sandwich to distort it? I do use standard battings of assorted types/content.

The important thing ... do what works for YOU!!
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Old 06-06-2022, 10:46 AM
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Umm, I will have to try not pressing in half, I don't think it would save that much time though as I still have to press all those joining seams when making the binding. I will try it on a smallish project to see how much difference it does make.
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Old 06-06-2022, 11:57 AM
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Tried not pressing because I am always open to new things. Results not any different and I donít mind pressing the binding. Binding is one of the things I am good at.
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Old 06-06-2022, 12:00 PM
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While I can see that — in theory— not ironing the fold could make a slight difference, I would want to baste the edges of the binding if I didn't iron the fold, especially if I’m going to attach it to a pieced border where I need to exactly match the quarter inch seam allowance. For me, there is not enough downside to ironing the fold to make me want to substitute in a basting step. It might be enough of an advantage on thicker battings. And probably there is a whole lot of personal preference here, just like some quilters pin everything and some don’t. I always have a nice full binding because I trim the backing and batting just about 1/4 larger than than the front.
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