How to Make Quilt Borders

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Quilting is a craft that has been popular for years. Once the blocks have been sewn together, the quilt top is almost finished. The last step to sewing the quilt top is to make and sew on the borders. Sometimes a quilt will have just one border, and other times a quilt will have multiple borders of different widths. This article will explain how to make quilt borders.

Things You'll Need

  • Pieced Quilt Top
  • Cotton Fabric
  • Sewing Machine
  • Sewing Notions (thread, scissors, pins, etc.)
  • Cutting Mat
  • Rotary Cutter
  • Cutting Ruler
  • Iron

Make Quilt Borders

  • Lay out your quilt top and decide what kind of border or borders you will sew onto your quilt top.

    One popular border technique is to have a narrow border first and then a wider border to finish the quilt top. For the purpose of these instructions, we will learn how to make this double border.

  • Measure the width of the quilt.

  • Prepare to cut out the inner border. Press the fabric and place the selvages together. Fold the fabric one more time to have the fabric folded into four layers.

  • Place the fabric on the cutting mat with the folded edge on top and the selvage edges on the bottom. Make sure the fabric is smooth and aligned properly.

  • Cut out 1 1/2-inch wide strips of fabric. The number of strips depends on the size of your quilt top. Start with 6 to 8 strips. Cut more as necessary.

  • Pin one width border to a width edge of the quilt top by placing right sides together and matching raw edges. Pin the other width border in the same way.

  • Sew both width borders to the width edges with a 1/4-inch seam allowance.

  • Press the seams toward the quilt top.

  • Measure the length of the quilt top (including the new borders).

  • Make two inner border strips to the length measured in Step 9.

  • Pin one length border to a length edge of the quilt top by placing right sides together and matching raw edges. Pin the other length border in the same way.

  • Sew both length borders to the length edges with a 1/4-inch seam allowance.

  • Press the seams toward the quilt top.

  • Repeat Step 2 through Step 5 to cut and sew an outer border, except the width of the outer border should be wider. The width could be as wide as you wish. Five inches would be a typical outer border.

  • Repeat Step 6 through Step 13 to sew the outer border to the quilt top to finish sewing on the borders.

Tips & Warnings

  • Identify the selvage edges by looking for edges not cut off the fabric bolt. They may have a line of white running along the side and sometimes have printing along the edge.

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