I was making these cute paper pieced veggie pot holders and needed to bind them. Personally, I would not finish these pot holders anytime soon if I had to hand sew the binding on the back! Are you the same way?
So, I decided to use this quick and simple binding method to bind the pot holders completely by machine! This method gives you perfectly mitered corners and is quick and easy to do.
I have used this method when binding a quilt and I think it adds a nice look to a quilt. It's a great way to put a quick machine binding on any quilt. Follow the link for a full tutorial.
Keep reading or watch the video below for instructions on how to add a machine binding to a quilt or pot holder using this method.
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What You Need For Binding
- Fabric for binding
- Rotary Cutter, Ruler and Mat
- Pot holder or quilt needing binding
Directions for Machine Binding A Pot Holder
Step 1: Cut Binding Strips
To create the binding, start with fabric yardage and cut width of fabric strips from it which are 2.5 inches wide. If you need to calculate how many strips you will need for your project, click the link to visit or Free Online Quilting Calculators page.
For my pot holders, I used the background fabric for my binding fabric.
Step 2: Make Double Fold Binding
Once you have your strips, connect them together into one long strip before sewing onto your pot holders. One strip may be enough for each pot holder but to waste less fabric you may want to join the strips together into one before sewing them onto the pot holders.
If you do not know how to connect the strips, visit our post on How to Join Binding Strips and our video to learn how to make a double fold binding.
Step 3: Attach Binding to the Back of the Pot Holder
Look at the front of the pot holder and decide which corner will have the loop. Start sewing the binding at that corner.
Lay the pot holder with the back facing up and the corner with the loop will be towards the machine. Take the binding and align the raw edge of the binding with the raw edge on the pot holder.
Put your 1/4" foot on your machine. If you do not have a quarter-inch foot, use your normal foot. Sew a 1/4" straight seam along the first side of the potholder. In the photo below, I have my 1/4" foot aligned with the edge of the fabric to make the 1/4" seam.
Just before you get to the first corner, stop 1/4" from the end. My quarter inch foot has a marking on the side at 1/4" from the stitching. With the needle down, pivot towards the corner and sew into the corner and off the edge.
Take the pot holder out from under your machine. Next, fold the binding back at a 45-degree angle as shown below.
Then fold it down so the folded edge aligns with the top edge of the potholder and the edge of the binding aligns with the edge of the pot holder as shown below.
Put your potholder back under the foot and start sewing 1/4" from the edge as shown below. My quarter-inch foot has a mark to indicate 1/4" from the sewing so I line up the edge of the fabric with that mark.
Don't forget to back tack at the beginning of this seam. Continue sewing the binding in the same way until you get all the way around.
When you come to the starting point, flip the binding at the first corner out so you won't sew over it. Stop stitching 1/4" from the edge. The binding should look like the photo below.
Step 4: Cut off the tail of binding
To make the loop for hanging the potholder, leave a four-inch tail of binding. Measure 4" from the edge of the potholder and cut off the binding.
Step 5: Turn Binding to Front and clip
Next, turn to the front of the pot holder. Turn the binding to the front and carefully push out the corners to turn them.
Wrap the binding around to the front of the pot holder so that it covers the stitching line just made to sew on the binding. Binding clips are a great way to hold the binding in place. Place them along the four sides first.
Step 6: Fold the Mitered corners
To make the mitered corners, shown in photo above and below, push the horizontal side underneath and into the corner. Then fold over the right side making a nice fourty-five degree angle in the corner. I always fold it in this direction so that when I'm sewing the seam, I will be sewing off the edge. If it's folded the other direction, when you are sewing, the machine will have to go up onto the folded corner and it may get caught or fold backwards.
You may need to fuss a bit with pushing the underneath side in and making the nice 45-degree fold. If you are having problems getting your corner correct, please watch our video to learn how to sew a mitered corner.
Once you have your corner nicely folded, put a clip in the corner to hold it in place. Fold and clip the three corners in this same way.
Step 7: Prepare the loop
For the loop, fold up the seam allowance and then fold down the binding over the top. The raw edges will be on the inside and a nice folded strip will be ready for making the loop. Iron it flat as shown below.
Step 7: Sew ARound the binding
Use a fancy stitch like the serpentine stitch to sew the binding down. Before sewing around the binding, test your stitch width and length using a scrap piece of fabric. When I stitch the serpentine, I have to lengthen the stitch so that the waves are wider and longer. Test until you are happy with the stitch and then stitch your pot holder.
Start sewing from the loop fabric and sew all the way around the potholder.
Below is a close up of the serpentine stitch I used.
When you get to the corner, stop when the needle is towards the right side with the needle down. Pivot and then turn your potholder ninety degrees. Continue stitching the next side.
Notice below as I'm stitching, the mitered corner is folded towards me so that when the foot goes over it, it's going off the edge instead of up onto the edge. This ensures that your nice mitered corner does not get flipped up during stitching.
Continue stitching around the potholder ending at the first corner.
Step 7: Sew the loop
Lastly, fold back the loop fabric to make the loop as shown below. Zig-zag over the raw edge. Go over it twice to be sure it will hold and not come apart with use.
The potholder is finished and has a nice machine binding that required no hand sewing!
Here are the potholders that I made. The pattern for these potholders is free and you can find out more about them in our paper pieced veggie pot holders post.
If you have any questions about this project, contact us through the YouTube Video
comments or our Contact Us page. We respond to questions in e-mails and YouTube comments regularly.
For other machine binding tutorials and methods, click the links below.