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Monday, August 3, 2009

How to figure binding . . . Shhh! Mary's not looking!!!. . . .

. . . so KyleAnn is going to play! I've been going nuts trying to find out how to figure the amount needed for binding. Of course, I can always call my favorite quilt shop (AIS, in case you didn't know), but I always have these questions when they are closed. (Remember, I'm a beginning quilter.) SO, I got out my trusty "learn to quilt" books, but no one gave a formula. Next, I got on the internet and "googled." I don't know what I did wrong, but I didn't get a lot of help. One sight started out great - figure the total of all 4 sides. Ok, I can do that! Add 10 inches (some sights said as much as 20") for joining. Ok, I can do that, too. Then it told me to find the square root of the total. WHAT???? First of all, I don't DO square roots. So I got out my calculator and found the square root of my total. All it told me was what size SQUARE I'd need for the binding and that a fat quarter was not big enough. Well, that's all well and good if I were cutting my binding on the bias - but I don't (yet).

Finally, I found a site that made sense, and turned out that Janet (at AIS) uses a similar formula, so I know it must be right!

Measure the sides of the finished quilt to determine how many inches of binding required (you can measure from top to bottom and multiply that by 2, then measure from side to side and multiply that by 2. Add the two totals together. Assuming your binding fabric width is approximately 40”, divide the total inches by 40 to determine the number of fabric strips required. You can then take the number of strips and multiply it by the width of the binding (i.e. 2 1/2”) to determine how much fabric you’ll need to complete your binding.

Sample: 40" x 50" quilt . . . 40X2 = 80; 50X2 - 100 for a total of 180” perimeter; divided by 40” equals 4.5 strips (round up to 5 strips).

Multiply 5 strips by the width of the strip (2 1/2”) equals 12.5” of required fabric, which is just over 1/3 yard. so you will need 3/8 yard for your binding!
And since she's still not looking, here's another coupon!!

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