Monday, August 17, 2009

mitered multiple borders tutorial - {quilting basics tutorial series}

for years i was afraid of mitered corners.
who knows why.
but i was way to afraid to try.

now that i have.
i'm kicking myself.
because i have lots of quilts that would look better if i had done it!

so i want you to try
and not be afraid like i was.

Mitered Multiple Borders Tutorial
(the multiple part actually helps.)

This is a quilt I made. The multiple refers to the small inner border and large outer border. I'm going to show you how to do both at once! Pay special attention to pressing as it is the key to how this works!

Start by figuring out your dimensions.

The top/bottom strip lengths each be calculated from this formula
Quilt width before borders + ( 2 x (border total width + 1") )

The strip lengths for the sides will each be calculated from this formula
Quilt height before borders + ( 2 x (border total width + 1") )

See this picture
Fyi they can be larger like my top/bottom ones are

Cut all 8 strips and sew them into 4 sets of two.
Press the top/bottom sets towards inner border and right/left sets towards outer border.

Start with right and left pieces.
Pin the borders to the sides and mark in at 1/4" from the end on all four corners.

Sew side borders onto the quilt starting and stopping at marks. Backstitch at the beginning and end of each of these seams.

Iron both of these borders out toward the border and away from the quilt top. It should look like this.

Next pin the extra fabric out of the way so it does not get caught when you sew the top and bottom pieces onto the quilt.

Repeat the process with top and bottom pieces and you should have this result. Press the top and bottom borders in towards the quilt.

Now here is the beauty of this process! Because you pressed the seams in opposite directions they will nest together. Two seams will nest together, the border to quilt seam and the border to border seam.

Work on one corner at a time. Fold your quilt onto itself at the corner. Nest the seams together as in previous picture and put in lots of pins.

Use a ruler to mark your stitching line. The top should line up with the fold and the 45 degree angle with the line of stitching from attaching the border to the quilt. If you can't get these both to line up take out your pins and adjust where your fold is until you can. Draw a line once it is lined up right.

This is what the result should look like.

Start sewing exactly where the stitching ends from attaching the borders to the quilt and sew slowly down the line to the outside corner of the quilt.

Open and check your seam. If it looks like this you are good to go. Iron, trim excess border and you are done!
If your seam doesn't look right take the stitches out and try again. This is why I suggest not cutting the excess border strips until after this step. As a result you'll have your fabric still there just in case.

See how easy that was!!
Things get a bit more complicated when you are trying to line up an element such as a large flower but the overall techniques are the same!

This can also work if you are doing 3+ borders as well as for mitered corners in blocks.


Want to link to this tutorial?
grab a button!

{144 x 144}


amy @ park city girl does it a different way that is worth reading as well.
and show me pics if you try!

This quilt pattern is from Nancy Halvorson's book Cider Mill Road

© 2009-2022 Julie R. Herman. All rights reserved.
No part of this tutorial may be reproduced without written consent of Jaybird Quilts. 


Sinta Renee said...

Very nice tutorial! I have done mitered corners before... but I'm not always happy with the results.

rachel griffith said...

you make it look SUPER easy.

Kris said...

mitered corners are now on my to do list! I was just thinking how I wanted to do these and didn't know how. Thanks!

Audrie said...

Great tutorial! I'm going to have to try this sometime :)

V and Co. said...

so going to try this.

allsewnup said...

I can't wait to get home and back to my sewing machine to give this a try. I've mitered before but it doesn't always look right.

Thank you, thank you

Barb said...

If you don't mind, I am going to take your link and put it on my famlly quilt blog....thanks, it was wonderful.

Barb said...

guess I won't, you don't have a link button...oh was a wonderful tut...and love the qquilt as well.

Vickie E said...

very nice explanation of a tough topic for even an intermediate your quilt top

Angela Nash said...

Great tutorial! I love lal the notes in the pictures - makes it really easy to follow.

Ariane said...

Thanks for the great tutorial. I love your quilt top. I did end up buying that pattern book. Thanks for the inspiration.

Rose said...

Very nice tutorial, those corners sure make the quilt look different

Dresden Quilter said...

Thanks for the tutorial. I have made mitered corners before but not with both borders. It will be neat to try this out.

Unknown said...

Thanks for the link! I love making them too - they aren't that hard and add lots of interest. Your top is looking great :)

Thimbleanna said...

I love mitered borders, but I'm usually just too darn lazy to make them! ;-)

Nicole said...

Wow, those mitered corners do look really good. I might have to change how I do borders now. So I'm doing a hexagon quilt where the edges are not straight but zig zag, I have to idea how to bind it, any ideas???

Micki said...

Thanks for the wonderful tutorial!

bingo~bonnie said...

I read you as a featured guest over on Quilty Pleasures today and saw the link there to this tutorial and I am so glad that I did!!! I've been wanting to know how this is done and now I can read and reread before i give it a try!

Thanks! and congratulations on being featured with Quiltmaker Magazine! ;)

Love from Texas! ~bonnie

bingo~bonnie said...

forgot to say - I grabbed a button and added it to my sidebar on my blog linking back to here ;) Now I'll always know where to find it and so will my readers! ;)

Love from Texas! ~bonnie

Lisa said...

Just did a triple border on my quilt... awesome tutorial!

Unknown said...

Gorgeous! I think mitred corners are my favourite finish because they frame the quilt so beautifully.

I have just prepared a quilt that has contrasting fabric on the reverse. Would it possible to turn a double border to the reverse side?

Quilter from Wells

Roxanne said...

I recommended your tutorial to my sister who is doing her first multi-border and she said it was amazing!

Unknown said...

I have always done mitered borders. It makes the quilt look so much better. I look upon it as framing the quilt. When I only have so much fabric and I do more then one border I struggle with the math. Your tutorial was a big help. Thanks for posting the information.