Double fold quilt binding also known as the French –fold, is exactly what the name implies, a binding folding so that it forms two layers. There are two methods or techniques for attaching or this type of binding to your handmade baby quilt. This fold is a favorite among quilters who design baby quilts because of its durability and versatility, but also because of its ease of turning and finishing the project.
Some suggestions to prepare for sewing either method or technique would be to make sure that the thread in the sewing machine matches the binding. The rotary cutter, mat, and acrylic ruler will be used for cutting off excessive batting. Other items that come in handy are binding clips. If you have trouble locating these, a trip to your local pharmacy for some spring-action hair clips will also do the same job as the binding clips, since they have that “snap” feature. Find the iron and ironing board. Pressing your quilt binding will be important. Finally, a pair of fabric shears and hand sewing needles which will be important as the double fold binding is secured in place.
The first method, is simple and easily to do. Using a sewing machine, the binding is sewn to the front of the quilt. To prepare for this step, fold the binding strip in half, lengthwise, with the wrong sides together. Use a warm iron; press the binding in an up and down motion to prevent the fabric from stretching. It is also important not to allow the binding to hang over the edge of the ironing board for the same reason. Pin the raw edges of the binding to the straight edge of the baby quilt. When you sew, use a ¼ seam allowance and remove the pins as you come to them. Corners are best completed in a baby quilt by mitering. This avoids bulk and wears well, since a baby quilt tends to have more use then other types of quilts. Trim the batting and backing even with the straight quilt edge, so you have a ¼ inch binding on the front of your baby quilt. Finally, fold the binding over the layered quilt edge and clip this in place. Use the matching thread to blind stitch the fold of the binding to the backing. The closer together that these blind stitches are made, the more durable the binding will be.
The second method attaches the binding from the back. In this method, you will need to determine how to find or align the quilt binding for pinning and sewing since you will be stitching from the back and not be able to use the marked straight quilt edge as your guide. A basting stitch is sewn by machine through the batting and backing just outside the quilt’s edge. When you are on the right side of the quilt, this basting line becomes your guideline. Press and fold the binding as mention in the previous method. Place the raw edges of the binding on the basting stitches with the fold of the binding towards the center of your baby quilt. Use a scant ¼ inch seam allowance to sew the binding to the quilt. The corners should be mitered as mentioned in the above method. Trim the batting to ¼ inch. It is helpful to use the acrylic ruler when measuring this. Fold the binding over the layered edge and clip securely to the edges of the baby quilt. This method allows for machine sewing instead of hand sewing of the binding. Use either a straight stitch or a decorative stitch and choice of specialty thread is optional, as is the bobbin thread.
Don’t let finishing your baby quilt be problem. The double fold binding is simple and easy to do.