Tuesday, January 31, 2012


How do you attach borders to your quilt? I have recently done three quilts that have had technical issues with the borders. I reworked two of the quilts. One of the quilts the piecer had measured and sewn on fussy cut cornerstones. It didn't fit. She hadn't taken into account the seam allowances. There was no more fabric to work with. I eased in the quilt to fit the border. Fortunately, the shortage was just the amount of the seam allowances. It was easily eased in.

The second quilt had borders that were too long. The extra fabric on one side was nearly three inches.  That is a difficult amount to ease into the quilting. After reattaching the borders I started the quilting. It's going very well. I should have it finished and ready to deliver when I visit California at the end of the week.

The last one had embroidery details, so I worked with it as best I could. I asked the piecer how she had attached her border strips. "I sewed on strips and trimmed them." This is not the best way to attach the borders.

Below are two links that have information about a better way to attach borders.  First, is an online article by Janet Wickell. The one from Longarm University is a pdf that you can download.

They both recommend measuring your quilt to determine the length that the border should be. I would add that when I measure the quilt sides I measure along the seams, because sometimes the raw edges of the fabric stretch a little. You don't want wavy borders. Sometimes, it doesn't quilt out.


  1. Thanks for the links I will be keeping them for reference.
    I measure the center of my quilt cut the 1st borders to that size and sew, press and then repeat for the two other sides.
    Makes all the difference in the world.

  2. I always measure through the middle, add 2 borders at that measurement, measure the middle again (but in the other direction) and add those borders. Then repeat as necessary for each border.