Cutting Quilt Borders
I am working on my first quilt.
It is time to cut the strips of fabric to make the border. Is it necessary to cut the fabric selvedge to selvedge and then join the strips together or can I just cut the fabric lengthwise and use one long strip?
First I will use a narrow 1-1/2” strip of one fabric followed by a wide 7-1/2” fabric in a different color.
Congratulations on making your first quilt!
Many times quilt patterns instruct you to cut your quilt borders from cross grain fabric strips...those cut from selvedge to selvedge. This is meant to help you economize on fabric.If
there is not a noticeable design in the border fabric AND
if the quilt will not be displayed vertically on a wall, then I make my border strips by seaming together crosswise grain strips to create the required length.
For a bed quilt, the bottom and two side edges hang off the edge of the bed. So unless the design of the fabric dictates cutting the fabric a specific way (i.e. directional print), then I would cut all the border strips from the crosswise grain of the fabric to ensure the lengthwise grain runs from the top of the mattress to the very edge of the quilt.
Wall Quilts Need Stabilizing
Now I do prefer to have my border strips in one piece.
Even more important, if the quilt will hang on a wall, I always use lengthwise grain strips for the left and right side borders and crossgrain strips for the top and bottom borders.
Diagram for cutting borders for a quilt that will hang on the wall.
The lengthwise grain is the strongest fabric grain
and using it this way helps your quilt hang straighter with less sagging over time.Just remember
, cutting lengthwise grain side borders takes more fabric. You will need to make the yardage calculations yourself, unless otherwise noted on the quilt pattern envelope.
Cutting the top and bottom borders from selvedge to selvedge and seaming when necessary, ensures that the lengthwise grain for those borders runs top to bottom, too. Again, the quilt hangs better.
Thank you for your question, Gloria. Don't forget when your quilt is finished to post a picture of it at Share Your Quilts
. We'll love to see it and help you celebrate your achievement!