How to Put a Binding on a Quilt – Wide & Narrow

Last Updated on December 4, 2023

Learn how to put a binding on a quilt: Quilting is an art form that allows for creative expression through various techniques, and one crucial aspect of finishing a quilt is the binding.

Here in this blog post, we’ll delve into quilt binding, focusing on wide and narrow techniques.

How to Put a Binding on a Quilt


  • Use wide binding to frame vibrant quilts, adding a touch of boldness and balance.
  • Be mindful of costs and fabric usage when opting for wide binding, as it requires extra material.
  • Choose narrow binding for a subtle, elegant finish, but pay attention to precision in corners.
  • Craft sample strips to find the perfect width for both wide and narrow bindings.

How to Put a Binding on a Quilt

How to Put a Binding on a Quilt

Quilt binding plays a crucial role in finishing a quilt, and mastering wide and narrow techniques adds versatility to your designs.

Wide binding frames are vibrant and busy patterns, while narrow binding offers a refined touch, contributing to your quilts’ overall aesthetic.

Today, we’ll look at why people prefer wide or narrow bindings, the dimensions required, and, most importantly, the step-by-step technique for achieving both.

So, let’s get this party started!

1. Wide Binding: Enhancing Your Quilt Design

Wide Binding
Wide Binding

Wide binding can add a unique touch to your quilt, framing the design like a beautiful picture frame.

When opting for wide binding, consider the following steps:

Evaluate Your Quilt Design

Assess whether a wider binding would enhance or solve design-related issues.


  • Calculate the additional fabric needed for wide binding, considering the fold at the seam and quilt edge.
  • Create sample pieces to determine the ideal width for your binding.


  • Use the larger measurement if you’ve squared up your quilt for wide binding.
  • Deduct the fabric needed for joints from the width of your fabric strips.

Cutting and Sewing

  • Use a template or ruler for cutting strips.
  • Sew strips together, either diagonally or with a straight seam.
  • Consider the diagonal flat seam for a sleek look.

Sewing on the Binding

  • Pin and sew, ensuring the proper distance between the quilt edge and binding.
  • Make adjustments for corners by folding the binding strip at a 45-degree angle.


Choose between machine and hand finishing, balancing bulk for a polished look.

2. Narrow Binding: Adding Elegance to Your Quilt

Narrow Binding
Narrow Binding

Narrow binding can offer a subtle and refined finish to your quilt. The process for narrow binding is similar to regular binding, but adjustments are made for the smaller width. Steps for Narrow Binding:

Adjust Width

  • Choose a narrower strip, such as 2.25 inches or 2 inches, for a sleek look.
  • Create samples to find the optimal width for your quilt.

Sewing and Handling Bulk

  • Join strips with diagonal cuts.
  • Exercise caution in corners, folding the bottom opposite to the top.
  • Opt for the flat but fussy method for attaching binding to avoid bulk issues.


Why would I choose wide binding over narrow binding for my quilt?

Wide binding is chosen to make a bold statement and frame intricate designs. It’s particularly effective for busy or vibrant quilts, providing a substantial border containing visual elements.

How do I calculate the fabric needed for wide binding?

Calculate the fabric needed for wide binding by considering the strip width, seam allowance, and additional fabric for folds at the seam and quilt edge. Create sample pieces to determine the ideal width, and remember to account for fabric in joints. 

Can I use the same binding method for both wide and narrow bindings?

Yes, the basic binding method remains the same for both wide and narrow bindings. You’ll still sew the strips, attach them to the quilt, and finish the binding. 

What is the smallest width for narrow binding, and how is it achieved?

The smallest width for narrow binding can be an eighth of an inch. Achieve this by using a smaller strip, such as 2.25 inches or 2 inches.

Can I machine finish both wide and narrow bindings?

Yes, you can machine finish both wide and narrow bindings. The choice between machine and hand finishing depends on personal preference. 

Are there specific considerations for corners when working with wide binding?

Yes, handling corners for wide binding involves using tools like the three-in-one tool or ruler to mark and fold the binding at a 45-degree angle. 


Mastering wide and narrow binding techniques allows you to elevate your quilting projects.

Understanding the impact of binding on your quilt’s design and making informed choices regarding width can transform the final outcome.

Whether you prefer the bold statement of wide binding or the subtle elegance of narrow binding, these techniques provide the finishing touch that turns a quilt into a work of art.


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