How to Make and Attach Wide Chunky Binding for Quilts with Carrie Nelson of Moda Fabric


(upbeat music) – Hi, I’m Kimberly Jolly from the Fat Quarter Shop, and today, Carrie Nelson
from Moda Fabrics, is going to show us how to
do wide, chunky binding. So tell me where we start. – You’re gonna start
by cutting your fabric. The best way to do it is you
want your piece of fabric to be such that you can get as many long strips as you can. For efficient fabric, you’re
gonna have some that are short, but you want as many long strips, and these are cut on the bias. – So it’s better to start
with like that quarter than it would be to cut with a quarter-yard that’s straight. – Exactly.
– So you have more width. – Exactly. All right, what I’m gonna do is I’m gonna square everything up first. So I’m going to start
by first lining this up so that I can get a straight
cut on the two ends. That lets me, everything,
once the strips are cut, they are ready for piecing. And I know this make Kimberly crazy when I cut on the other side, but this is how I do this.
– Oh my gosh. – And yeah, it’s making her nervous. She’s twitching (laughs). But then I also cut off the selvage, because that’s not gonna
be in there anyways, and it lets me have it off, and for those of you that
like to make selvage quilts, you can save that. Now, the way I line to cut
this to make it really easy is you’re gonna have it right-side down, you’re gonna fold this so that you get a nice, 45 degree angle cut, and then you’re gonna fold this down, right like that, you
can line everything up, and then you’re going to be able to, this is gonna make her really nervous. – And so what she’s doing is on each of these, we have
a chart that you can download, and that’s gonna give
you the different sizes. So, some of the binding
can finish it like one, or 3/4, so you can download your chart, and the one that she’s doing right now is going to be cut at three inches, so follow your chart to decide
what width you wanna have. And I’ve never seen anybody do this, so this is like, crazy, ’cause I don’t really do bias binding, but it’s gonna look awesome. – Well, and the only way to really make the single-fold binding work for the width is it does need to be on the bias. – Yep. – So you’re gonna get all these strips. This one, you’re gonna need to
cut at one angle or another. – [Kimberly] And then
you’re gonna join these on the diagonal, right? – [Carrie] Yes. – Are you gonna press those open, or? – I always press them open because then they’re
gonna lay much more flat. – [Kimberly] And how many strips
do you need for your quilt? – I always make extra. You’re gonna add the four sides, and I always add at least 10 inches. I’d rather have extra binding left over than come up two or three inches short when I’m trying to do my join. For a small piece like the
ones we’re gonna be working on, the strips you can cut from a fat quarter are gonna be plenty. So you’re going– – So you take the perimeter of the quilt plus how many inches? – Plus a minimum of 12. And I would even err higher than that, because when you’re doing the miter, on this, it’s going to eat
up a little bit more fabric than you’re used to, so if you’re used to adding 12 inches, you might wanna add 18 to 20. If you’re adding 20, add 30. – So Carrie, I see you’ve put your strips on this nice vintage spool. So tell me kinda what we do next. – Okay, the first thing you’re gonna do is you’re gonna square
up your quilted piece, and by that, meaning you’re
gonna trim the four edges that are gonna be your outside edge. – And you trim right on
the edge of the quilt-top. – Trim right on the edge of the quilt-top. In some cases, I will use my seam for a border as a guideline, and measure it to make sure
it’s as square as it can be. The next thing you’re gonna do is you’re gonna take your binding. – [Kimberly] Well, you’ve
also put some stitches on the edge, so let’s talk about that. – I found that when I started
doing the wider binding, I wanted to make sure that this edge was gonna stay nice and
flat inside the binding and not poof after it’s
been washed, or just wear, so I went back with just a wide, kind of wavy stitch. – Like a little serpentine stitch. – Zigzag is fine. If you even straight-stitch
around it one or two times. – [Kimberly] Just like a
little bit more securing after you trim it. – Exactly. Then you’re gonna take
your pieced binding strips, pressed open, and I like to start that, I’m gonna be able to start stitching approximately in the middle, that my join is going to be
somewhere along this point. – [Kimberly] The center. So I wanna make sure I have enough extra, and you’re going to go
ahead and lay it on there. If you like to pin, you can pin some, but I think you’re gonna find, if you try to pin the whole thing, you’re gonna wind up having to unpin it, because until you get there, you’re not sure how much fold is gonna go into that miter, and trust me, it’s more than you think. – [Kimberly] Yeah, and
probably just pin like, half of a side at a time. – [Carrie] Uh-huh, exactly. – So you’re gonna keep folding
kind of all the way around to make sure that before we start, that one of the, I guess the bias-joins, I don’t know what you call ’em, but they’re not gonna be in your corner, ’cause you know what, that
happens to me all the time. ‘Cause I don’t do this
step, but I probably should. – Okay, well probably that one would fall right in the corner, so maybe we adjust it just a little bit. But it’s also hard to know exactly where that miter is, how much it’s gonna take, and the other thing, Murphy’s law, when you’re stitching.
– It happens. – Yeah, it happens.
– Every time I do a quilt, it’s in the corner,
(Carrie laughs) and that’s fine, it’s fine, nobody’s gonna know but you. – The other thing that’s nice is with this being just
a single layer of fabric, it’s not quite as bad as
with a double-fold binding where you’ve got more layers. – Yeah, so it’s definitely on the bias, so it’s gonna move around a lot, so tell me what we’re gonna do when we go to the sewing machine? – The first thing we’re gonna do is we’re going to mark our seam allowance because even if your
machine as a 3/4 inch, or 7/8 or one inch, you’re gonna need to be able
to mark the spot in front, so we’re gonna use a little ruler, and we’re gonna mark our seam allowance. – Okay, let’s go do that. – [Carrie] The first thing you need to do is put some markings on your machine. While you have markings on the side, you don’t have them in front, and for this to be able to stop stitching at the right point, you’re going to need
to be able to do that. I recommend using washi tape, and you’re going to need a square ruler. A small one is better, six inches, four inches, one of those sizes. And very carefully, you’re
going to lower your needle so that it falls right on the
point where you need it to be. This one is going to be 3/4 of
an inch wide seam allowance. You’re gonna take a piece of tape, and you’re gonna put it on this side, just to kinda reinforce your marking, use the edge of your
ruler to keep it straight, and you can also use your
seam allowance markings on the machine to help
you keep it straight. This is the one that’s more important, and you can use a little bit
longer piece of tape for that. You’re gonna raise this,
move the ruler out, and now you’ve got a 3/4
inch marking on the side and in the front. All right, we’re going to start stitching. The first thing you need to know is I always use Aurifil 50-weight thread. I was using neutral color, but for today, we’re gonna
use a real pretty shade of red so that you can see the stitching. The other tool that I would keep handy is something like the
Purple Thang or a stiletto, even a long seam will work, but you need something that’s
gonna give you a flat edge, to help with the miter. It’s not required, but it’s what I use, it’s what I’ve done for many many years. When you start stitching,
you’re going to start at least four to five inches from the end. I would actually start a little more. I usually, it’s probably
just a shade more. You’re going to start stitching, and as you start getting near the edge, and you’re gonna pretend that I’m not stitching
over these needles, pins, as you start getting near the end, you’re going to flip
this up as you’re seeing, kinda just to get a sense of when you’re getting close to the point. I probably did one stitch too far, so I’m gonna back this up just one stitch, back down, needle, and I’m right in the corner,
right where I need to be. This means that that needle, that point, my stitching line, is 3/4
of an inch from either side. Now you’re gonna flip this
back, with your needle down, you’re going to turn the piece. I like to stitch back and
see you’re right there still with your 3/4 inch seam allowance. I do like to stitch it back to the edge. Not everybody does, I do. Whoops, going the wrong direction. Do I have to hold that? There we go. And I stitch off and I
leave the needle down. I am gonna raise the presser foot, and this is where you’re
going to get your binding, and you’re gonna make your miter. You have to have all this
extra fabric in there for the miter to work on
the front when it’s done. I just put this in, and I bump it right up against the needle. That let’s me know I’ve
got enough in there. You’re gonna position it so that it’s still on your seam allowance. Whoops, came out. Down. Now you’re gonna stitch. And at this point, if you
wanna stop and pin, you can. I confess, I don’t pin
a whole lot on this. Because this is a bias binding, you don’t want to pull it a lot, but you can give it a
little bit of pressure, a little tiny bit of a tug, and you’re gonna keep stitching. You are gonna want to have
trimmed your little corners before you start stitching. You can do it after, but
I like doing it before ’cause there’s no chance
of them getting in the way. And you’re gonna do the same thing going into the next corner. As you start getting close, you’re gonna flip that
edge up just a little bit, get right to that point, raise your needle, turn this, needle down, stitch back, presser foot up, and see, still right there, I’m actually moving it with
my hands unfortunately, but you’re still right where your 3/4 inch seam allowance is. Gonna do the same thing, fold your fabric for your
miter, put this down, try not to step on the end of the binding, and continue stitching. Just gonna take that
out, and there you go, clip your thread, and you’ve
got four sides stitched, and now we’re gonna do our join. Because we wound up
with a seam right here, I’m actually going to make sure, and this is not gonna cover it long enough to include my seam allowance, so I’m gonna do a line here, and I’ll actually trim it, and that’s going to be
the end I’m gonna mark. I still have more than
enough to do it that way. Gonna use a 45 degree line on a ruler, and just with like a friction
pen, I am gonna mark it, and hope that it actually shows. There we go. I’ll put this over here, and very carefully pretend that I don’t have this
right next to the quilt, gonna very carefully cut that. All right, this is the part
that I’m going to mark. I like to overlap these like that. I’m gonna make just a couple little marks right on the end of where
it falls, just right there. That gets flipped back, and then I’m gonna add a
half-inch seam allowance. And then this piece gets
taken over here, and also cut, and yeah, sometimes
this is a little scary. I have sometimes cut it a little short. We have all those pieces. And now we are gonna pin these two. And yes, you will need to fold this up. It might seem a little bit tight, but that’s actually a good thing. You’re gonna do a 1/4 inch seam allowance, and you’re going to pin it, and this one you really do need to pin because, since your
pulling it on the two sides and you’re gonna be putting
this under the machine in kind of a weird sort of way, it’s just, it’ll help keep
it nice and smooth and even. See, I do use pins sometimes. You’re gonna have that, and then you’re gonna stitch it with a 1/4 inch seam allowance, and if you can see my little
points on the two ends, that accounts for my
1/4 inch seam allowance on the two sides. So I’m gonna have to do a stitch. All right, this is where it
does get a little bit tricky trying to get this piece
in here and keep it flat, and you can probably tell
that’s why it’s a good thing that you have pinned this, so that you can stitch your
1/4 inch seam allowance. And again, pretend I’m not
stitching over the pins. And you’re gonna stitch right off the end. Gonna trim your little
thread, remove your pins, clip these threads as well,
get them out of the way. This right here, just finger press it. Really really well. And now you’re gonna go back, and yes, you’ve left your washi tape on, at least until this point, so that you still have
your seam allowance. You don’t need the one in front, but I usually wind up, I forget, and I take the side one
off while I’m doing it. So I just leave them both on. And you’re gonna stitch. Because it’s just finger
pressed, that happens. And there you go. Raise the needle, clip your threads. If you wind up with a little teeny bit of what looks like a
little bump right here, it’s not really a bump, but the nice part is,
with this being bias, a little shot of steam is
gonna take that right out and it’ll be nice and smooth. Now you can take out the
piece of washing tape. All right, you’ve got
your binding stitched on, now we’re gonna press. I like to press the
binding so that it’s open of how it’s actually going to
lay when it’s all finished. So once the binding is stitched on, I go ahead and press it so that you’ve got, you’re
pressing it away from the piece, so that you’ve got this,
a nice smooth edge. It’s also gonna let you
start pressing the corners, press your miter a little bit. Don’t worry about these too much, ’cause you’re probably gonna
have to go back and adjust. It just lets you get it started. You’re gonna turn, you’re
gonna do all four sides, I know this is a little bit
more ironing than pressing. And I probably would not use
too much steam at this point, mostly because it can help distort, and this is, after all, bias. Now, if you have a little bit of fullness that you need to get rid of, hit it with a little bit
of steam and that’ll help. And you’re just gonna do the four sides. Now, at this point, I
like to turn it over, and fold it down and
start pressing this way. It is not absolutely necessarily required, but with the bindings I’ve done, this seems to help me
get a nice smooth edge, and it especially makes it easy for doing the corners with your miter. Pay attention to the
direction that you stitch so that you’ll know the direction that you’re gonna do your miter. The way I stitch, I’m gonna
wanna put it up this way, press it flat, this the one time you might give it a little shot of steam, and then this is gonna come that way for that nice, crisp corner. Don’t worry if these don’t
meet 100% accurately. They will by the time
it’s finished stitch, and you can check the front corner to see how nice, if that line goes right into the corner, which it should. Gonna keep going around your four sides. Now, the next thing you’re gonna do is I pin one side at a time. I have not had any real success using even the large
binding clips for this. I go ahead and use regular pins, and you’re gonna turn it under, and I’m actually gonna flip this around, because I stitch from
this direction across. If you stitch the other way,
you’ll wanna do it reversed. And you’re going to want to turn it under, right along your seam line. And pin so that you can be stitching, and you’re not stitching towards
the direction of the pin. Ask me how I know. ‘Specially if you use really sharp pins, set your pins that the point is facing in the direction that
you’re gonna be stitching. I will pin a whole side, and maybe just a little
bit past the miter, but probably not, mostly
because I wanna have everything available to me, and I want it to be loose as I’m stitching into the miter. As you go in, gonna pin this down, and you’re gonna pin it all
the way to the very edge. I’m gonna put one more pin right here. You wanna pin it so that
you’re gonna be able to go right up there. You’ll see this is gonna start
to turn, and that’s okay. You don’t have to worry
about it too much for now, ’cause you’re going to
stitch all this way down, and you are actually gonna
stitch all the way down to here, and then maybe do just
like a running stitch back to your point. Normally, for a piece this size, I would probably start
stitching in the middle, but because you don’t wanna
watch me stitch all day, I’m gonna start in the corner so you can see what I do on the end. I do almost all of my binding stitching with just a neutral thread. It’s just what I’ve always done. I also use size nine straw needles. The only reason I use straws is it’s the easiest
for my hands to handle. Use the needle that you are
comfortable using for binding. And move these out of the way. I always bury my knot
in the middle layers, just somewhere there, and
I get the needle to come up right near my seam line. I don’t know why I do it that way. That’s just how I’ve always done it. I take one or two little
anchoring stitches. The other thing you should know, yes, I like a very long thread. Yes, it sometimes I mean I get knots, but when it’s short,
it just makes me nuts. All right, I just use a simple stitch where all you’re gonna
do it put it under the, under the backing, right
near the stitching line. I keep my finger right under there. If I feel the needle come through, it means I’ve gone a little bit too far, and I need to keep it
a little more shallow. My stitches are usually
about 1/4 inch long, sometimes a little smaller than that. I don’t know why they’re that size. For whatever reason,
that’s just the rhythm that seemed to work for me. Stitch it in the way that
you’re the most comfortable. Now, this is where you’re gonna
keep this end tucked under, and you’re gonna stitch
all the way to the corner. The reason I do that is it
just helps it keep it smooth, and for me, it makes turning the miter, whoops, stabbed my finger there, a little bit easier. I do a couple little tack stitches just to kinda keep that
secure right at the end. And then I’m gonna flip this around, and all I’m gonna do is run, just kind of like a running stitch back to my seam line. As long as it doesn’t show
on the front, that’s fine. I just want my thread back in the corner. I position this. Now, you’re gonna wanna
finger press this under just a little bit, and then you’re going to flip that down so that it comes right to the seam line. And you might need to adjust the fold just a little bit. And, where’s my stitching line? There we go. You’re gonna use your needle
just to pull it into place, and at this point, it is
helpful to add a pin or two just to keep it place while you stitch. You are gonna stitch down
this miter, front and back, with the same stitch that
you’ve used for your binding. Yes that pin is gonna get
a little bit in the way, but in the end, you’ll be
happy you left it in there, just because it makes
the stitching process a little bit easier. And yes, on both wide and
regular narrow bindings done with a double fold, I do stitch down the miter front and back. It’s something learned
many many years ago, and creature of habit,
just got used to doing it, but especially on the wider binding, it just gives it a nice finish. And with tiny little
stitches, it won’t show. Depending on how big your stitches are, and whether or not you feel
that there’re any gaps, at this point you’ve got the
front and the back stitched. You have two choices. You can either go back and stitch it again if you’ve used a longer stitch, or put your needle right
through to the back, doesn’t show, I do just a
couple of little stitches, take that, oops, that
pin’s gonna be in my way. I need a little bit smaller bite. You’re gonna take just a
couple little tack stitches right in the corner, and then you’re gonna turn the piece, and you can take a couple stitches because you’ve got one pin in, but at this point, I would go ahead, stop for a minute, and
pin the whole next side, all the way up until the corner. – So Carrie, how did this
technique come about? – I used to see wide bindings on antique quilts all the time, and I could never figure
out how to make it work until somebody said single-fold binding, and then it was that light-bulb moment. – Well we think this is totally awesome, it frames the quilt, just
makes me wanna touch it. So make sure to like,
comment, and subscribe to the Fat Quarter Shop YouTube channel, and we’ll see you next time. (upbeat music)