Quilt Making: Finishing Your Quilt

Can you believe it!? We are at the end of making our quilt! I have enjoyed writing this mini series so, so much and I have enjoyed working with the beautiful, bright, and happy yellow fabric ADORNit sent me. I’ve got some more fabric from them that I’ll be sharing more about during the rest of my ambassadorship.

For now though, lets learn how to finish off your quilt!

I’ll be covering a bunch of steps in this lesson; putting the layers together, basting, quilting, binding, and getting that wonderful crinkly quilt look.

The Layers of a Quilt

A quilt has three layers, a top, batting, and backing. Sandwiched together the order will go, backing, batting, top

The top is what we finished last post.

The batting is premade and bought from your local craft/fabric store, as long as it is needle punched you will be fine. Here are few that I like and have used, here and here.

The backing is any fabric your heart desires. The one I used for this quilt I already had in my fabric stash, I bought it a long time ago because I just couldn’t pass it up and knew I would be using it someday. Yay for fabric stashes, am I right!

I like my backings to contrast from the top because I think it adds extra character to the quilt, I love this one because it has yellow flowers but also because it is a dark, almost black navy blue which gives me a fantastic contrast.

EXPERT TIP: Always make sure your backing and batting are wider and longer than you top. This will help you keep straight edges on a finished quilt. It will also save you if you have any shifting while doing any of the quilting.

Step 1: Sandwich your layers and bast them together in preparation for quilting. I normally used a spray basting glue but I had run out so I wiped out my old safety pins.

A spray basting glue is a great tool to have because you don’t have to worry about your layers shifting and there is no need to pin a bazillion pins to your quilt. Saves you time and sanity.


Before putting your quilting stitches down decided the design of your stitches. For this quilt I wanted to emphasize the herringbone so I chose to outline them. Also I like using straight stitches because they are easy for everyone to do and don’t take away from the quilt.

Step 2: Place your first stitches to secure your quilt. I usually do this through the middle of the quilt and work out from there. Change your stitch length to the longest setting, and put the presser foot up against the seam. Stitch the length of the quilt on both sides of the seam. Do this for every seam you have decided to work with.

This step is usually the most labor intensive so get ready to sit at your sewing machine for a length time. Put on your favorite Netflix show or podcast and enjoy yourself!

Step 3: Cut the backing and batting even with your quilt top. Take this time to make sure your quilt is still square. If you did your math right in the beginning you shouldn’t have to do much trimming.

I don’t have a picture for this because I forgot (sorry). To get a good straight edge, take your mat and ruler and go along the quilt cutting off excess fabric.

Step 4: Clip and sew your binding onto the top of your quilt. This will give you a clean look from the front. To make a mitered corner, fold the binding at a 45 degree angle and then fold it again lining it up with the new edge. When sewing at a corner stop 1/4 inch away and turn quilt so you will be sewing off the quilt at the same 45 degree angle. See pictures for reference.

If this doesn’t make a lot of sense right now, don’t worry, I’ll be doing a more in depth binding post next week.

Step 4: Fold binding over raw edge and sew it down to the back of the quilt. To give your quilt a more professional look, fold and sew the binding past where you sewed it to the front of the quilt. You will be able to feel where your binding lines up when pinning/clipping it down. See pictures for reference.

Step 5: Wash and dry your Quilt! I wash and dry mine on delicate and they always come out with the perfect quilt crinkly-ness. Do you love when quilts crinkle after a wash?


You are done! Look at you, you finished a beautiful quilt! Cross that off your list of accomplishments because you are AWESOME!

Doesn’t this quilt look incredible with ADORNit’s yellow floral and grey striped fabric?? I love them so much, I think they definitely made the quilt and I am so grateful ADORNit chose me to be an ambassador for them for a few months. You can learn more about that by going to my instagram and clicking on my story highlight “adornit ambassador”

Lets connect on social media, show me your quilt! I’m on instagram @thewhistlingbluebird, come show your pretty face and say hi!

Thanks for hanging out with me while I taught a little bit about quilting! If you missed the previous post about how to sew the quilt top, click here.




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