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Facing vs Binding a Quilt

Have you ever wondered how to finish off an art quilt? What do you do when binding would be too distracting? Facing a quilt is easy, and it gives the quilt a classy wrapped canvas look!

I made a quilt for a couple out of the husband’s collection of Tommy Bahama shirts. They plan to hang it on the wall in their Florida home. It was either this quilt idea or trying to find a piece of art that fit the theme and wall space they had. The competition was stiff so I knew I’d have to do something that had an art look to it… and binding would make this project look too “quilt” like. Facing to the rescue! Heres what I did...

First, cut enough 2.5” strips to go around the whole quilt. Also, cut four 5” squares: one for each corner. You can cut smaller squares if need be, but I wouldn’t go much smaller than 4”.

Iron those squares in half diagonally to make triangles. Sew the strips together to make lengths long enough for each side. You will need 4 separate pieces, one for each side. Iron the strips in half lengthwise.

Make sure your quilt is quilted right to the edge. This will ensure the edge doesn’t “lettuce leaf” or waffle as sometimes happens when the middle of a quilt is quilted and the edge is not. Working from the front of the quilt, place the triangles in each corner aligning the edges with the edges of the quilt. Now, place the strips down each side overlapping onto the corner triangles by an inch or so.

Pin everything in place and stitch all the way around with a ¼” seam allowance.

The triangle will create a little pocket in each corner. Clip the corners close to the seam so those corners won’t be too bulky when they are turned right side out.

Turn the corners right side out. Using a pencil or chopstick or something else that is pokey but won’t cut through the fabric to push everything out, finger press the edges over all the way around.

Now, at the ironing board use the nose of your iron to really get that facing pressed over. Pull the whole facing and the corner triangles around to the back side of the quilt, you don’t want any of the facing fabric to show on the front.

Pin everything in place, and hand-stitch the facing down being careful that the stitching only catches the backing and batting (you don’t want those stitches to show through to the front).

And here it is! The finished look :)

Here’s another quilt I finished this way, this one hangs on the wall in my office…

And this one, I made just for fun… still looking for the perfect place to hang it, but it looks pretty good in the closet till then ;)

I hope this was inspiring and helpful! Let me know what you think, I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Happy Sunday, everyone!


Follow all my quilty adventures on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest. Visit my website for free tutorials and tips. If you like my patterns, you can buy them on Etsy, and here on the website.

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