Step #1: Lay out your fabric. This photo shows a full width of fabric with the selvages at the top and bottom of the photo. It does not matter if you are looking at the right or wrong side of the fabric. I like to start with with wrong side facing me.
Step #3: Fold the bottom LEFT corner from Step #2 UP to the top corner. You have just layered folds of the bias edges on top of each other. This is the most important edge..the layers of folds. The arrow is pointing in the direction you are folding. There will be a single fold at the bottom (where my arrow is..ignore this fold!) Remember this for all the rest of the folds. “ALWAYS FOLD THE BIAS EDGES ONTO THEM SELVES…” This makes the stack of folded edges to come!!!
Step #4: Fold again in the same direction as the last fold. Another layers of folds are stacked! Stack them neatly one on top of the other. You will see that at this point your fabric is at an angle pointing down and to your right.
Step #5: Gently turn your fabric so that it is perpendicular to your body. Now you can cut your bias strips! First lay your ruler down a 1/4″ or so over the stacked folds. Cut the folds away..giving the edge of your fabric a little “Hair cut”. Without moving or disturbing the fabric cut your desired width of binding. If you are a beginner start with 2 1/2″ cuts. If you are a confident binder, cut 2 1/4″. This is a good place to be! If you really want your binding to look the same on the front and back of your quilt, cut 2″ binding. Any of these are fine. You do what you are most comfortable in handling.
When you are finished you will have many strips. They will automatically be a 45 degree angle because you used this method. Sew the strips end to end at the 45 degree angles. (no waste!) I like to lower my stitch length a bit giving extra strength to the seam. Press the long length of the binding strip in half pressing each seam OPEN this makes the binding perfectly flat so that you cannot feel the seam…and you are ready to sew the binding onto your quilt!
Please don’t let anyone tell you that it takes a lot more fabric to make bia binding. Nope it does not. Use this method and you will see.
My friend Gene from Alabama did a video on this technique. I have fond memories of showing him and Pat from Deleware how to do this. We were in a restaurant eating barbeque and drinkin sweet tea (this is the South!). As I recall, Gene and Pat folded their napkins and used them as a reminder. Here is the link to Gene’s video THANK YOU SO MUCH Gene!.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bsB9cmeHQcs
(I run from video cameras he is much cuter than me!)
Another Thank you to my friend Betty Lewis who taught me this technique many years ago!