How to Finish a Quilt


Quilts have held and told stories for generations, throughout families and history.Quilting is an age old art form, dating back to the civil war era. Although it looks simple enough, sewing quilt squares together does not a quilt make! Your quilt isn't done until you've completed the ever popular "Quilt Sandwich" and binded your quilt.

Things You'll Need

  • Pins or basting spray
  • Yarn or thread for tying
  • Needle and hoop
  • Batting
  • Binding
  • Scissors
  • Thread
  • Large working area
  • Plenty of patience

Assembling the quilt sandwich

  • Make sure your work area is clean. If you're working on the floor, vacuum the rug or floor to ensure no dust or dirt stains your quilt. Place a large piece of smooth wood or cardboard where you'll be laying your materials for extra protection from anything that may ruin your project.

  • Lay your ironed piece of quilt backing on the work area with the wrong side of fabric facing up. This is the first layer in your sandwich.

  • Lay your cut piece of batting on top of your quilt backing.

  • Lay your quilt top over the batting with the right side of the quilt top facing up. Now, you've successfully assembled your quilt sandwich! Now, it's time to baste it!

Basting the Quilt

  • Place the batting, sprayed side down, on top of the quilt backing. Smooth the batting over the backing material. Repeat step 2 for quilt top and attach it to batting.

  • Pin baste a quilt using medium to large quilting pins. Take your quilt sandwich with quilt top facing you, and pin all three layers beginning in the middle, working outward in a spiral shape.

  • Tie the quilt, machine quilt or hand quilt as desired.

Binding a quilt

  • Cut your binding about 1/2 inch wider than the desired width. Fold the binding in half with the back of the material together and iron.

  • Fold the edges under again and press. Line up the fabric edges with the top raw edge of the quilt with the pressed and folded edges facing the center of the quilt. Then sew the raw bound edges to the raw quilt edge about 1/4 inch away from the edge.

  • Fold the bind over the back side of the quilt and bind stitch to the back covering all the raw edges.

  • Choose to miter your corners, giving a sharp look or simply gather the material around each corner softening the look of the quilt. Once the binding is complete, your quilt is done!

  • Once the binding is complete, your quilt is done!

Tips & Warnings

  • Experiment with different patterns, shapes, thread colors and techniques for a variety of beautiful effects.
  • Tying quilts is a lovely alternative to machine or hand quilting, and can be done using yarn, embroidery thread or heavier sewing thread.
  • Be patient when you first begin quilting. It's a long process, and requires patience and expertise.

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