Friday, December 9, 2011

Two-color binding and other mysteries.

This looks difficult, but it really isn't.  To make the binding different on the two sides of your reversible quilt, you just need to cut your strips 1" wide for one side, and 1 and 1/4" wide for the other.  Measure the outside of your quilt, add a foot or two to the measurement, and cut enough strips to go around.  I tend to be generous with this measurement, since I'd rather have some leftovers than not have quite enough.  Next, sew all the strips together and press open the connecting seams to reduce bulk.  Then, sew the different-colored strips together with the right sides facing each other, with a 1/4" seam.  After they're together, press that long seam open.  Then turn up the wider strip until the raw edge meets the other raw edge in the seam, and press again.  When this step is complete, you can stitch the narrower edge of the binding onto the quilt, handling the corners as in this video.

When you've sewn all the way around, and have joined the ends of the binding as in this other video, you will then carefully press the binding away from the quilt top all the way around.  You then fold the binding over to the other side of the quilt, and press again.  At this point, you can pin the binding in place from the other side, or you can do Sharon Schamber's method, using Elmer's School Glue.  I do the glue thing.  I ordered the nozzle from her web site and picked up the glue at the local store.  It really makes life a lot easier when sewing on that binding from the other side.  She goes on to show hand sewing the binding, but since this binding has a bit of extra on the back, you can just turn the quilt over and machine sew in-the-ditch right next to the binding on the other side.  If you've done a good job of securing the binding to the back, this will attach the binding very nicely.  Be sure to use a bobbin thread that either matches the color of the binding on the back, or makes a pleasant contrast.

One of the best parts of this little quilt, for those of us with arthritic hands, is that it's done with NO hand sewing at all.  :)

Mary had a question about accurate piecing, and I'll talk about that tomorrow.


  1. I'm curious - do you cut your binding strips on the bias?

    I love the reversible trick and see it could work for clothing too. I've never seen it!