Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Binding Design

I finished a quilt for a new pattern last week. Go! Fish will be a pattern for
Island Batik. I used an upcoming Island Stack (10" squares) plus a turquoise background for this design. My original plan was to use the turquoise fabric for the binding.

As I arranged the parts on my design wall I realized I wanted a 'bottom' for the quilt so the fish weren't just swimming in 'space'. This isn't a true pictorial quilt; it is more abstract. But what I was seeing in my mind had a 'bottom'.

I decided to use some of the darkest squares for half-square triangles and pinwheels for the bottom area. I then realized that turquoise binding around the entire quilt wouldn't work well. I needed to change the colour of the binding along that darker area.

The bottom area of Go! Fish - quilt is 60" wide (and 72" high - the part you can't see yet)

Here are the steps I used to accomplish this: 
  1. Measure along the bottom of the quilt and up the left and right side to the spot where I wanted the binding colour to change. This told me the length of dark binding I would need. I added 18" to that measurement to allow for joining the turquoise binding.
  2. I divided the measurement by 38". I always use 38" as a strip length when calculating binding. It allows for joining the strips diagonally and for mitered corners.
  3. Then I cut my dark fabric strips, prepared the binding and sewed it onto the quilt. I didn't sew right to the spot where I wanted the turquoise binding to start. I stopped about 4" before that point on each side and allowed an additional 5" of binding beyond that spot.
  4. Then I measured the remaining perimeter of the quilt (for the turquoise binding). Again I divided by 38" to determine how many turquoise strips I would need.
  5. I prepared the turquoise binding. To join it to the dark binding on the left side I marked the spot on the dark binding where I wanted the binding colour to change. Then I joined the turquoise binding at that spot. I used a diagonal seam for this join, just as I do for all binding seams.
  6. Then I sewed the last bit of dark binding and the turquoise binding to the quilt, stopping 10" from the spot where I stopped sewing the right edge dark binding. I determined the spot where I wanted the dark binding to end and then joined the two binding edges at that spot and sewed the last part of the binding to the quilt. 
I am very happy with the result! 

The pattern for this quilt will be available in a few months. 
Sign up for my e-Zine and you'll be the first to know!

Here is a great video tutorial for joining the ends of
your binding strips 
with Sherri Bain Driver from McCall's Quilting.

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