Unexpected benefit of blogging: it’s easy to compile links to all your favorite resources in one place so you can find them again! These are my go-to resources for quilt binding techniques.
Hand Finished Binding
If you are planning on submitting a quilt to a show, it’s good to know what the judges look for in your binding. A hand-finished binding is definitely the preferred method. I tend to use Elizabeth Hartman’s book when I want to use this method. She has great instructions and photos.
If you’re reading this, you are probably a quilter, crafter, or hobbyist of some kind. Or maybe you aspire to be but aren’t there yet. Just like I was. For YEARS.
For years, I would tell myself I ought to do some sewing. “I enjoy it, why don’t I do it?” But then I would get bogged down in what to make and what kind of skills it might take. I would look at hundreds of patterns, dozens of blogs, and admire everyone’s work. But I would do no work of my own. It was always something I would get to when I ‘had more time.’ But, we all know there never is more time. If you want time for your hobbies, you have to make time. Fit it into your calendar and schedule it if you have to.
So, now I have been sewing, and actually finishing a few things, great! Except…. Now I am totally STUCK!
See this lovely quilt, top finished, batting and backing all pinned together. Just waiting to be quilted. And I have no idea how I want to quilt it. It’s been sitting here for almost 2 weeks. I know the quilting pattern that I want to use, but I can’t quite make it work in practice. I’ve been trying out some sample quilting patterns, but I keep rejecting them for this project. I’m stuck and I can’t figure out how to move forward.
But, friends, here’s the awesome thing about joining a group of similar hobbyists: I have a deadline! I committed to this project as part of our UFO Challenge with the Boulder Modern Quilt Guild. And I’m feeling some serious (but happy) deadline pressure. I am stuck right now, but oh boy, I need to get myself unstuck by this weekend! If I’m going to have this quilt finished by the next meeting, that means I have two weekends to quilt and bind it. Let’s say I want to take that second weekend to do the binding, that means that I must finish the quilting this weekend.
Group deadlines help you to get unstuck and keep moving toward your creative goals.
So, I may be stuck right now. Seriously stuck! But I must get myself unstuck this weekend! Without my quilting group, I might debate for endless weeks about what to do. I might even shelve the project telling myself that ‘I’ll get back to it later.’ Nope, I need to make some decisions, put on my big girl pants, and quilt this puppy this weekend.
If you have been hesitating, if you haven’t been able to jumpstart your craft or hobby, join a local group! Find one on meetup.com or find a national organization for the type of craft you are interested in and see if there’s a local group. That’s how I found the Boulder Modern Quilting Guild. It’s one thing to read things online, but it’s completely different meeting people in person and seeing the work they are doing.
If you have been dabbling in your hobby but aren’t finishing things or aren’t progressing in your skills, join a local group! In a group of 20 people, you will have something to learn from every person (and you have something to teach too)! Watching others finish projects month after month is going to help drive you to finish new works. And, when you get stuck like I am, you can get motivation from challenges, or ask for help if you are stuck on a particular technique.
If you’re a quilter, start with the Modern Quilt Guild. If you have a different hobby in mind, start your google search now and find a group you can join. Get unstuck and join us happy crafters!
I absolutely love Elizabeth Hartman’s patterns! They perfectly fit my preferred style of sewing: beautiful, complicated, but not too fiddly with special techniques.
But, so many pieces! This is 185 pieces right here. Which doesn’t seem possible, but I counted twice. Unlike the unicorn pillows, I labeled the piles which made a huge difference when finding the right pieces to sew. Label your piles!
The sew up took a few sessions, but was fairly straightforward. I felt that I could have done a little better on the match-ups to keep everything perfectly accurate, but overall I’m pretty pleased with the results.
I’m working on this project as part of the UFO Challenge for the Boulder Modern Quilt Guild. This project has been in the works for years and the fabric is at least 2 to 3 years old. I’m making this for a specific purpose to decorate the house. I’ll show pictures soon of the spot it’s going to live in.