Friday, July 03, 2020

June Mini Madness - Adding Borders

Once you have your blocks set on point, you'll probably want to add a border or two.  The first thing you'll want to do is make sure your quilt is squared up and trimmed.  You probably won't need to trim much, but basically you want to make sure all your points are 1/4 of an inch from the edge and the dog ears are trimmed up.  
Next you'll need to measure your quilt.  I like to measure across each edge as well as through the center.  For my width I measured 43 1/2 for all three measurements.  For the length I had a quarter inch difference so I took the average of 51 3/4.  From these measurements I can see that I'll need 5 strips for my first border (I am adding two because I am using up my leftover material and I think it will look good with a narrow border, then a wider border to finish)  I had about 7 1/2 inches of my fabric for the first border, so I cut five 1 1/2 inch strips.  The final strip had a bit that was just a little short of 1 1/2, so I cut that part off so I wouldn't accidently use it.

I decided to add the borders to the top and bottom first so I wouldn't have to piece those.  I cut strips to size, then pin at the center and ends.  I add pins about every 10 - 12 inches.  I don't do a lot of pinning when I am piecing, but I definitely pin borders!  If by chance your borders don't fit when you are pinning, you will definitely want to re-measure.  Believe me, trying to "ease" them in and make them fit just doesn't work!  (And if you do this whoever quilts your quilt won't be happy either!)  Mine fit great, so I stitched them on and was ready for the side borders.

To figure out the length of your side borders, you want to take the measurement of the length of your quilt plus two times the width of the border and subtract an inch for the seams.  So my side borders were 53 3/4 of inch long.  

For my final border I had a bit of an issue with finding a fabric that I had that was large enough and looked good.  I wanted to use that aqua fabric, but it seems to have disappeared.  Maybe I'll find it and use it for a border, but I did find that pretty purple fabric and liked it!.  

More math in figuring out how big my borders could be.  I had about 14 1/2 inches of fabric, so ended up cutting 2 3/4 inch strips for my borders.  I had to piece all four strips for the borders, so figured out how long all the strips needed to be right at the start.  After the first border my top measured 45 1/2 by 53 3/4.  So I need two strips at 45 1/2 and two strips at 58 1/4 (53 3/4 plus 5 1/2 minus 1 inch)  I like to piece borders with a straight seam, if you do a diagonal seam you need to make sure you have enough fabric to do this - you might need an additional strip.  I got them all sewn on with out incident and they looked great!

I’m really happy with the way the borders finish off this quilt!  I think the smaller border frames the blocks nicely and the purple is a perfect finish. I'll either do a dark purple for the binding, or maybe that aqua if it shows up in time!  I'm planning on quilting this using a large spiral coming out from the center.  I have a leftover bit of Hobbs Heirloom cotton binding that's just the right size to finish this up, so I just need a backing for it.
I hope you are enjoying finishing up your quilt(s)!  I won't be posting over the weekend, but I hope you will share your quilts as you work on them!  Thanks for joining me in my June Mini Madness!

Complete pattern available now!

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