How to Attach Quilt Borders

Toby Lischko
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Duration:   7  mins

Depending on the quilt design, adding a border is a common last step when completing a quilt top. Toby Lischko shows you how to properly attach quilt borders, including giving tips on squaring quilts and cutting border strips so everything fits together nicely.

Adding Quilt Borders

Before you can add a border to a quilt, it is important to know whether or not your quilt top is square. While accurate piecing and diligent pressing during the construction of the quilt top will help ensure a square quilt, Toby explains why it is always important to confirm that it is square and make any necessary trims or adjustments as needed- no matter what size of quilt top you are making. She shares and demonstrates her preferred technique for squaring a quilt, and while demonstrating on a small sample that fits on the table top, she explains how the same method can be used on a larger quilt.

Once the quilt is square, Toby explains how to attach the borders. She shares which borders she likes to sew on first and why and then demonstrates the method she uses to prepare her borders. If following a quilt pattern, it will generally tell you what size to cut the side as well as top and bottom borders. While these measurements will generally work when assembling a quilt, it is always important to measure your quilt top and make adjustments to the border length if needed, before attaching it to the quilt. This will help ensure that the borders lay flat once they are sewn in place and there is no waviness to the border.

Toby shows how she likes to align and pin the borders onto the quilt top before stitching in place. Ensuring a square quilt top and following these guidelines for creating great quilt borders should help all of your future quilts and border turn out as desired.

Reply to becky
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10 Responses to “How to Attach Quilt Borders”

  1. becky

    Very helpful. Now i would love a follow up to see how she handles the corners. I have only done miters where the binding is a strip that goes around the corner. Thanks!

  2. Wanda Stephens

    I wish she would have shown an actual large quilt after showing the sample. I think it would’ve been very helpful. But she did offer some good advice.

    • Customer Service

      Hi Wanda. Thank you for your feedback. I have forwarded your comment to the proper department. We value your opinion, and it will help with the development of our online streaming community. We will continue to listen and work hard for your complete satisfaction.
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  3. KARA

    After attaching top and bottom, does adding the sides create overlapping corners? Is that going to cause bulk when adding binding? or do you cut the side fabric to just fill in the empty space?

    • Customer Service

      Hi Kara,
      Here is what our experts had to say: After attaching the borders to the top and bottom, they are cut flush with the sides of the quilt and then the side borders are added. There will be no additional bulk and everything will only be one layer.

      Let us know if we can help further!
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  4. Ann

    This doesn’t discuss how to join the border fabric. Most quilts are larger than the fabric width.

    • Toby

      You can either piece your border strips with a straight or diagonal seam. Then you measure and cut your borders following the instructions.

  5. Jacqueline Ashe

    The title isn’t reflective of the video at all. This is only part of the process of attaching borders.

  6. Jan Sturm

    The quilt I need to put borders on is not square. The four corners are at an angle. How would I do that?

    • Customer Service

      Hello Jan,

      Thank you for your patience while I reached out to the expert, here is her reply:


      First off- is the quilt not being square intentional? Because it is always important to square up your quilt before attaching borders.

      If the quilt is meant to not be square- you can still attach border to the sides of the quilt first, and then trim the top and bottom of the side borders at the angle needed to match with the top and bottom of the quilt before adding those.


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