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Cutting fabric for quilt borders

by Marti
(Lake Havasu, AZ)

I have a pattern that instructs that I cut 12 strips of outer border fabric, each measuring 6 1/2" x WOF. I understand that WOF is Width of Fabric. I am not sure if that means from Selvage to Selvage or from cut side to cut side. Thank you for your help.


Yes, WOF means from selvedge to selvedge, so you'll be cutting 12 strips that are 6-1/2" wide by 40"-44" inches depending on how wide your fabric is. Remember to cut off the selvedge edge and not sew it into a seam allowance. The selvedge is more tightly woven than the center of your quilt fabric. When washed it has a tendency to 'shrink up' more.

Is this a wall hanging?

I ask because when I cut borders for a quilt that will hang on the wall, I like to cut all my border strips so that the lengthwise grain (the grain that runs parallel to the selvedge) runs from the top of the quilt to the bottom.

If you've already purchased your border fabric, you may not be able to do this, it does take more fabric because the side borders are cut from a single length of fabric.

You can learn more about this technique at Cutting Quilt Borders.

Again, it takes more fabric to cut border strips that way, but you can always piece the leftovers into your quilt backing to add interest to an otherwise plain backing.

I hope this has been helpful.


Julie Baird

Comments for Cutting fabric for quilt borders

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Warp and weft
by: Jay

You are quite right to do it this way; horizontal strips may go fluttering (more elasticity in weft threads) whilst vertical strips stay smooth (hardly any elasticity in warp threads).

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