Binding | Staff Blog


2 posts.

French Braid: Two-Color Binding Instructions


French Braid designer Becky Cogan gave her quilt a two-color binding (one color on front and a second color on the back). She uses this technique when she doesn’t have enough fabric to coordinate with the front of her quilt or when the binding fabric that looks the best on the front of the quilt doesn’t look as good with the backing.


To make two-color binding that finishes a scant 3/8″ wide, complete the following steps:


From binding fabric that will show on quilt front, cut:

  • 7/8″-wide binding strips in number and length specified in French Braid instructions in American Patchwork & Quilting April 2013 issue

From binding fabric that will show on quilt back, cut:

  • 1-5/8″-wide binding strips in number and length specified in French Braid instructions in American Patchwork & Quilting April 2013 issue


1. Sew together 7/8″-wide strips with diagonal seams to make one continuous front binding strip. In same manner, join 1-5/8″-wide strips to make one continuous back binding strip.

2. With right sides together, join front and back binding strips on a pair of long edges with scant 1/4″ seam to make a pieced binding strip. Press seam toward darker print.

3. Fold pieced binding strip in half lengthwise with wrong side inside. Sew pieced binding strip to quilt, placing front binding against quilt front.

The Binding Tool Tutorial

Do you struggle to create binding with perfect angled seams without bulk?  The Binding Tool, a product from TQM Products, makes the task easy. We recently featured this handy product in our Hot Stuff column. See our review in the Winter 2011 issue of Quilts and More (available in quilt shops and on newsstands November 8) and get the complete tutorial below.

1. Leave a 12″ opening and 10″ tails when sewing on your binding. We used pins to help mark the opening before stitching.

2. Butt the tool up to the left edge of your binding where the stitching ends. Transfer the marked line onto the binding.

3. Open up the binding and line up the marked line on the tool with the marked line you just made. Using a rotary cutter, trim around the tool.

4. Rotate the tool and butt it up against the right edge of your binding where you stopped stitching. (Note: Do not flip over the tool.) Transfer the marked line as you did in Step 2. Open up the binding, line the tip of the tool on the marked line, then trim with a rotary cutter.

5. Open up the bindings ends and line them up using the pressed line as a guide. Hold the two ends in place with pins.

6. Stitch using a 1/4″ seam allowance.

7. Press the seam and stitch the binding to your quilt for a smooth-looking edge without any bulk.

Watch a video on how to use the tool here. 

What other tips or tools do you use to make binding easier?