Attaching Borders

  • measure the length of the quilt top in the centre and two other places but not along the edges
Borders 1

Measure length of quilt top in three places

  • determine the average measurement by adding the three measurements and then dividing the result by 3
  • cut two borders to this length and the width that is required by the pattern
  • on one side match the centre of the quilt top and the centre of one border strip and pin
  • match and pin corners
  • half and quarter the remaining quilt top and border edges, match them and pin, ease in any extra fullness, use as many pins as necessary to evenly distribute the fabric
  • sew and press, then attach the second border to the opposite side of the quilt top using the same process
  • repeat the process for the top and bottom borders by measuring the width of the quilt top in three places and finding the average as explained above etc.
Borders 2

Measure width of quilt top in three places

I know it is tempting to just slap on the borders, stitch them down and cut off the excess fabric. Please don’t do that. You are asking for trouble with this method. Even if your pattern recommends this method, and unfortunately some commercial patterns do, please take the time to properly construct your borders. If you would like to know more about why the “Slap and Sew” method will lead to fullness and wavy borders, here is an excellent article written by Carole Carter of “From My Carolina Home” (with pictures that speak for themselves).




Header Photo: "Third Weekend in October" Pieced and Quilted by Beatrice Rieske, Design by Ruth Powers of "Innovations"
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