Piped Binding- How I Did It, Part 1August 4, 2006
When I posted a picture of my first piped binding there were some questions about how I did it. I’m sure there are different ways of sewing piping on a binding. Quilting is versatile like that. I learned this method from Debra Wagner’s book Traditional Quilts, Today’s Techniques. I like this method because it is sewn completely by machine. It took some practice on sample pieces first, to learn how to line everything up for that final line of stitching. But it was worth the effort as the final look is so professional.
To prepare the quilt sandwich, I went through 3 steps. I trimmed the quilt to size. I zig-zagged the edges to ensure the top and backing would lie flat and smooth. And I marked the stitching lines on the corners. As my binding was to be 1/2″ wide I marked the stitching lines at a little less than 1/2″ from the edge. These lines will be used later as the binding is attached to the quilt sandwich.
To prepare the piping I used 1 1/2″ wide strips cut on the bias and cut to the desired length plus 10″. I would suggest a good solid cord be used as a filler. I pressed the bias strips in half lengthwise, wrong sides together, being careful not to stretch the bias edges. I inserted the cord snuggly into the fold and stitched along the edge of the cord but not through the cord. I found a pintuck foot helpful in guiding the cord precisely through the machine next to the needle. A piping foot could also be used, maybe even a blind hem foot; any foot with a slot to guide the cording straight under the foot at a consistent distance from the needle. After it was sewn I trimmed the seam allowance to 1/4″.
After the piping was finished, I prepared the binding. I used 3″ wide bias strips (6 times the finished width of the binding). The strips were the desired length plus 10″ also. The piping was then stitched along the center of the binding. To set up the machine I measured 1 1/2″ (1/2 the width of my binding) to the right of the needle and marked it with tape so I could stitch exactly down the center of the binding. Again, I used the pintuck foot to guide the piping through the machine.
To be continued…