Super Mom – No Cape!

One mother sharing her knowledge with others

How I Sew Strips Together for Quilt Bindings

Posted by supermom on June 8, 2011

Most tutorials for sewing strips together to make quilt bindings tell you to line the end of the strips up perpendicular to one another like this:

Then you are instructed to draw a diagonal line from the top left corner of the top strip to the right corner of the bottom strip like this:

Then you are told to sew along the line.

I'm using white thread so that you can see the seam. You would, of course, use thread that matches your fabric.

But when I do that my joined strips almost always look like this:

I’ve tried sewing exactly on the line.  I’ve tried sewing a little to the right of the line.   But I still ended up with strips that didn’t line up properly.  It was soooooo frustrating.

After some more experimenting,  I’ve come up with another method for joining strips that works for me every single time.

First, instead of lining the strips up perfectly end to end, I overlap each strip about an eight of an inch like this:

Then I draw my diagonal line from the point of the 90 degree angle formed where the two strips overlap at the top to the point of the 90 degree angle formed where they overlap at the bottom.

Then instead of sewing exactly down the middle of that line, I sew along the right edge of the line.  Kind of like carpenters have to know which side of the line to saw on, I had to figure out which side of the line to sew on.

Next I trim my seam allowance and press the seams open.

It’s so satisfying now when I flip the strips open and see they are lined up perfectly.

That is one thing that I’m learning about quilting.  You can find all sorts of tutorials on-line that show the “correct” way to do something.  But if that way doesn’t work for you, experiment until you find something that does.

My method of joining strips may not be the “correct” or most widely used method of joining strips but it’s the method that works for me to get the results I want.


This post has been added to the Sew Darn Craft Party over at Sew Many Ways.


2 Responses to “How I Sew Strips Together for Quilt Bindings”

  1. handstitch said

    THANK YOU for such super tutorial. I look forward to put this to the test when my gypsy-along quilt gets to that phase 😀

  2. Excellent! I hate joining strips and I love using bias binding so I use the method I showed in my never ending bias binding tutorial on my website. But for straight-grain binding, your method is great! I’ve had that same thing happen to me where the strips don’t line up, but I never took the time to figure out how to do it differently so they would line up. Thanks for sharing your discovery!


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