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Quilts and their Borders


clipart picture of a quilt with sashing, cornerstones and borders

I love to look at beautiful borders.  I have a lot of admiration for quilters who put beautiful borders on their quilts.  A border can do for a quilt what a frame can do for a picture. 


The problem is that when most of us are done making the body of our quilt, we are tired of the project and just want to finish it.


One important thing to remember about quilt borders is that if they are going to be cut out of some of the fabric in the quilt, you should cut them first, before you cut up your fabric.  If you wait until the body of the quilt body is finished, you will be doing a lot of seaming to make your borders long enough to surround the quilt.


If you don't measure correctly, and make opposite sides the same length, your quilt will not lay flat.  Always measure either down the center  and then cut the borders the same measurement.  Or you can measure each side of the quilt length, double the number and then half it.  Make your quilt fit the borders, and not visa-versa.


Borders can be small, medium and large.  Most often a small border is put on, and then a larger one next to it. The picture above illustrates a very traditional quilt, with sashing, borders, and cornerstones.


The border is a place where you can display beautiful big prints that you can't cut up.  Often the border is the starting point of a quilt.  The colors of the quilt are taken from the border.


I think we have all admired borders with curvy stem and leaf appliqué. Other popular borders are piano key borders, which are just small rectangles placed side-by-side that look like piano keys.  These often make use of leftover pieces of fabric.  Sawtooth borders are made from half square triangles.


If you get tired of working on your quilt, just put it away for awhile.  If you find yourself rushing at the end, or getting stressed, you are going to make compromises that hurt the design of your quilt.




Frugal Quilting

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Learn to make quilts with basic blocks.  Learn how to save money quilting.   Visit the Quilt Gallery to see just how lovely beginning quilts can be.  Visit Frugal Quilting.com.


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