Threads Will Continue to Bind Us Together
The binding of your baby quilt is the last part that keeps those loose threads from showing, but last does not mean least! You should put as much thought into the bind of your baby quilt as you do into the actual baby quilt.
Many factors influence which binding best suits your baby quilt. Consider your time constraints, skill level, and preference in handquilting or machine quilting of your binding; also your binding may have straight, irregular or curved edges.
One common baby quilt binding, bias binding is made from strips cut on the bias or at a 45 degree angle to the straight grain of the fabric. Bias binding provides the stretch needed on curves, and is popular for baby quilts because it is durable. Strips are pieced together to provide the required length needed for the baby quilt. Bias fold bindings can be either doubled or single folded and created from all types of fabrics
The single bias fold binding is sewn to the quilt edge first. The free side of the binding strip is then turned under ¼ inch and sewn in place by hand. This binding can be cut by a bias cut or a straight cut, not on the bias. It is not bulky and is a good choice for smaller baby quilts that may be used as wall hangings and will not require many launderings. Also this bias binding is better suited to baby quilts with straight edges only.
You have now mastered the art of straight and bias binding but does your baby quilt have more than just a straight edge?
Choosing a fancy binding requires more time, fabric, and some planning to ensure that the binding fits the baby quilt, but the challenges are well worth the reward.
One such binding, the scalloped edge are binding, requires that the scalloped edges are sewn to the quilt top when the shape of the top is predrawn or precut in curves. The binding is sewn to the front of the baby quilt either by machine or hand with invisible thread, wrapped around the back, and then sewn in place. The deep curves are trickier than the shallow ones on this binding, so be sure to purchase extra fabric.
Prairie point bindings, another fancy binding, are created when folded triangles are added to the edge of the baby quilt after it is quilted. The labor-saving continuous prairie point binding technique uses long fabric strips instead of individual squares to make the triangles. This binding is less durable but more decorative and requires planning to make sure the points fit the outer border of the baby quilt. The continuous prairie point binding technique reduces overall time spent on this challenging binding.
Ultimately, whatever binding suits your skill, style, and ability, will be the best binding for your baby quilt. Never treat your binding as an afterthought, but rather, as “the icing on the cake” of your baby quilt. The binding is your last opportunity to personalize your baby quilt – don’t leave it to chance. Choose a binding that will enhance your baby quilt and make it the special family treasure it is destined to become.
By: Sharon Camp – Unique Baby Quilt Boutique