Finishing quilts without binding is easier than you think. In my previous post about Finishing Irregular Quilt Edges Without Binding, I used 2 pieces of batting for quilting the top and back of the quilt individually before joining them. Here is another method for bindless finishing, that allows you to use only 1 piece of batting.
I created this quilt top by repurposing denim scraps and using a lightweight polyester sleeping bag in place of batting. The backing fabric is from my mom’s vintage stash. It’s amazing how much you can find in your own house to lower the cost of your materials. In addition, here are some tools and materials I love to use for projects like this.
Tools & Materials
- Aurifil thread Arctic Sky (2612) blends in nicely with different shades of denim, and it works great for both – piecing and quilting. I quilted the entire top without changing colors.
- Clover Point 2 Point Turner helps to turn every point perfectly.
- Fiskars 5″ Easy Action Fabric Snips are ideal for clipping corners in tight spaces and detailed cuts through several layers of fabric.
Finishing Non-Traditional Quilts
To begin, lay your finished quilt top on a piece of batting (I used an old sleeping bag in the photos below). Pin or spray baste to hold these 2 layers together. Stitch in the ditch around the main intersections to stabilize fabrics (the green side shows quilting on the back of my sleeping bag). You will add more quilting when the backing fabric is attached, so do not remove basting pins just yet. Once the main intersections are stabilized, straight stitch around the quilt top to outline the edges (approx. 1⁄8″ away from the edge), and then trim away the excess batting.
Now to attach the backing. Place the front piece on top of the backing fabric, with right sides facing each other and pin to hold the layers together. Sew around the edge of the front layer, with a 1⁄4″ seam allowance, leaving a 6″-8″ opening at the bottom edge for turning. Trim away any excess backing. Clip the concave corners to release tension and trim the bulk around the convex corners, being careful not to cut through the stitching.
Turn your quilt right side out through the opening, using a point turner to poke out the corners. Press the edges, then pin and top-stitch around closing the opening. Using some of the basting pins from the top layer, catch the backing fabric to baste the front and back layers. Quilt as you like through all 3 layers and you are done!
In this tutorial, I used Tops The Triceratops Jelly Roll Rug as an example.