Hand Sewing Quilt Binding & This Week’s Project!

by Kelsey Norwood

in Crafts,Quilting,Sewing,Tutorials

Today is Monday, and I WILL have a giveaway this week, just probably not up and running until tomorrow. It’s a good one though…you’ll like it.

As for today, I just finished hand sewing the binding onto my Michael Miller Ginger Blossom tumbler quilt. I enjoy hand sewing and always use a slip stitch, which is very easy and quick.

Here’s how to do it:

slip stitch how to

1. Cut a piece of thread about a yard long, thread your needle, tie a knot in the end, and anchor underneath the binding.

2. Directly below where the thread comes out and just along the line where you sewed the binding to the front side of the quilt, grab a few threads. (I used minky on the back of this quilt and grabbing just threads was nearly impossible. You’ll really want just a few threads.)

how to do a slip stitch for quilt binding

3. Insert the needle directly above back into the fold of the binding tape. Run the needle through the two layers of fabric 1/4″ and then exit the binding.

4. Grab another few threads directly below and repeat.

quilt binding clips

I use those quilting clips (that look and basically are EXACTLY like hair clips) instead of straight pins to hold my binding in place. I find that straight pins through so many layers is bad all around – it shifts the fabric around and they’re just so hard to get in in the first place. And they’re sharp, and I don’t like getting blood on my quilts.

I love the look of a hand bound quilt – if you’ve never tried it, give it a go. Put on a movie and you’ll love it.

michael miller citron grey quilting fabric collection
And this is what I’m working with this week – Michael Miller’s Citron Grey collection (could it be any more beautiful?!?). I’m doing a variation on a Roman Stripe that I came up with using the Electric Quilt software.

I’m giving Wonky a try for the first time, and it’s stressing me out. I’m very much a straight/parallel line kind of girl…so this is good for me and I think it’s going to be fabulous!

Stay tuned…


1 Joan August 8, 2011 at 8:00 am

Now you’re going to have to explain what “wonky” is. Other than the way a badly-pieced quilt looks. :) Thanks for the tips and inspiration you share. If I can’t actually find the time to do the things I love, at least I can see what you’re doing.

2 Kelsey August 8, 2011 at 8:05 am

You don’t know wonky?!? I didn’t either, at least I didn’t until recently. It’s just an off center block or a block where the pieces aren’t necessarily rectangular. Do a search in Google – I think you’ll love it! And I don’t really have time for all of this either…sometimes I feel totally crazy, but I love it!

3 Sue D August 13, 2011 at 9:31 am

I never heard of those clips before–I have the hair clips–what a wonderful idea.

4 all natural katie August 14, 2011 at 11:36 am

I always been interesting in quilting. When I get the sewing machine back from my mom, I’ll have to do a mini quilt project. Thank you for the tips!

5 Chelsy August 17, 2011 at 9:48 am

Oh! I am so excited I came across your blog while looking up fabric to make our first child’s crib bedding! I was looking for something gray and green. I cant really tell, is the Citron more of a yellow or green? I love Michael Miller’s fabric! Great blog and now that I have subscribed to your feed, I can keep updated with all your goodies! We find out gender Friday and I plan to tackle making the baby quilt this weekend!

6 Shannon August 22, 2011 at 10:51 am

Your quilt turned out gorgeous and I love the idea of the clips. I’ll have to remember that. As far as hand sewing the binding, I love to do it to because I feel like it is nicely finished but you can’t see the stitches. I was trying to explain to a friend how to hand sew the binding. This would be a really great reference point. Thanks!

7 Beth T. August 22, 2011 at 10:20 pm

I usually dread binding, and then when I sit down and do it, I love it. It feels like the final, loving touch.

I loved your wonky quilt, by the way. Seeing it, I remembered some primary colored fabric I set aside, thinking I’d made a Chinese Coin top with some Dick and Jane backing. Wonky Pinwheels seems much more appropriate for a quilt that reminds me of my childhood. Thanks much for the inspiration. Now to let go of my rigid ways and go wonky!

8 robin August 23, 2011 at 10:34 pm

Love the colors in that quilt. And I love Minky – I’m hoping it’s not too frustrating to work with.

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