Single Fold Binding
A single fold binding is a good choice in several situations.
1. You like single fold binding.
2. You are short on fabric.
3. You are making a wallhanging or other project that will not get used heavily.
Note: I recommend that you do not trim away your backing and batting until after you have applied your binding. It is a little easier to manage all three layers if you can still see two of them. However my sample does does not reflect this tip! I bought this little piece of a vintage quilt top at the thrift store, so it is all one size. This is just going to have to be one of those "do as I say, not as I do" examples!
To get started you will need your (quilted) quilt and a binding fabric.
Cut your binding fabric into 1 1/4" strips. You will need enough strips to go around the quilt edge plus 12" (for seam allowances and joining the ends).
Sew all of your strips together into one continuous piece. Start with two strips, right sides together, place ends at 90 degree angles and align both the top and right edges.
Sew from corner to corner.
Trim away the excess leaving a 1/4" seam allowance. Repeat until all strips have been sewn together. Press.
Lay your binding onto the quilt top, right sides together, aligning edges. Leave a tail about 4" long. Sew binding in place using a 1/4" seam allowance.
Stop sewing when you are 1/4" away from the corner. Backstitch. Cut your threads and remove the quilt from the machine.
Fold the binding up so that it is at a 90 degree angle to the quilt top. Align the edge of the quilt and the edge of the binding.
Now fold the binding back down, aligning the sides and the top edge. Pin in place.
Starting at the edge, sew the entire length of the next side stopping 1/4" from the corner as before.
Repeat until you have made it all the way back to the first side. Stop about 7" before you reach your starting point.
You will need plenty of room to work.
Go back to the end that you started with. Lay it out along the edge of the quilt and pin it in place near the end.
Now, you are going to create the seam allowance needed to join the ends together. They need to overlap by 1 1/4" (that is as wide as they were cut, so if you cut your strips at a different width keep this in mind). The simplest way to measure out the necessary length is to use the tail as a guide.
Lay the tail across the binding as shown. You may want to pin it in place to keep it from shifting.
Bring the other end of the binding across all that you have just laid out, aligning it with the edge of the quilt.
Cut off the excess binding as shown.
You should have an accurate seam allowance.
To join the ends, bring them together (right sides together and aligning edges).
Now turn the right one a quarter turn, forming a 90 degree angle.
This should look familiar.
Follow the same steps as before to sew the ends together.
Now, lay the binding in place. It should fit perfectly!
Sew the remaining portion in place, backstitching at both the beginning and the end.
The machine work is finished.
It is at this point that you should cut away the backing and batting. Use your seam allowance as a guide.
Trim flush with the edge.
Begin by folding the outer edge of the binding in to just touch the edge of the seam allowance.
Now fold it again so that the folded edge comes down to the seam line.
All raw edges should now be sandwiched inside the folds.
Take the first stitch.
You will be using a basic applique stitch. Catch just the edge of the fold on top, and the seam line below.
Stitch all of the way across the first side. Take your last stitch at the corner seam line as shown.
Fold the raw edge to the seam allowance as before.
Fold again, as before, aligning the folded edge and the seam line.
Take 2 stitches in the corner and then continue on as before, working your way around the quilt.
NOTE: If you would rather work with a slightly wider binding, cut your strips at 1 1/2" each. Then when folding them over, fold them to the seam line both times.