We get asked so many questions about the Quilt Binder so
I thought I would go through it once more in review on this blog.

(Please scroll through the Archives on the right hand
side of the blog page to July and November 2010 for previous blogposts on  this accessory.)

I have now completed the quilting on my Geisha quilt and
added the binding using the wonderful labour and time saving Janome Quilt
. I took photographs every step of the way and so here goes with another
step-by-step pictorial guide:

  1. Cut  your binding strips 2 inches wide. This does NOT need to be on the bias. In fact, I would recommend that it is not cut on the bias unless you are binding curved edges.
    You can do binding with narrower finished size. You will need additional
    binder attachments to do this – Please see your local Janome Dealer for more
    information. Also see November 2010 Quilt Binder blogpost.
  2. Figure out how many strips of binding you need and then join them all together with ¼ inch seams along the short ends.  Do NOT press the seams open as you would normally do on a quilt binding. Rather press both raw edges the same way – to the tail end of the binding as it feeds into the Quilt binder. This is fairly obvious as those raw edges will just flip backwards as they get drawn through the binder attachment.  You may join the strips at an angle if you prefer but still press the seams both the same way – to the tail end of the long binding strip. I generally just sew my strips together straight across due to time and patience constraints. However, the choice is yours.

    Remove bobbin cover and attach base plate

  3. Attach the base plate of the binder to the sewing machine as per instructions on the inside page of the blister package (it opens like a book…..did you know
    that?).  You may position the base plate horizontally or at an angle – whichever suits you better. Then tighten the large screw to hold the base plate tight.
  4. Now attach the quilt binder to the base plate but don’t tighten the 2 screws  completely as you may need to adjust the position of the binder from side to side to line it up  perfectly with your quilt.
  5. Attach the special quilt binder foot supplied with the binder to the ankle. I have
    been asked why is this necessary: it is because the regular A foot is too long
    and would bump against the back of the binder attachment – Janome thought of  everything!!
  6. Do not fret about attaching the binding with this supplied Quilt Binder foot as
    opposed to a walking foot or Janome Acufeed foot – Trust me….. the layers
    feed just fine. I have used this quilt binder to bind more than a dozen quilts
    now and have not had a hissy fit yet! Big deep breaths…….this is supposed
    to be fun…..not a rigid following of an arbitrary set of rules that says I
    HAVE to use a walking foot every time I have more than 1 layer of fabric.
  7. Feed the binding into the attachment with the fabric WRONG side facing you.

    Feeding the binding into the binder

  8. Pull it all the way through, into the “mouth” of the binder & straight back under the foot. Tuck the raw edges to the inside of the folded binding and finger press gently if necessary. I usually lower the presser foot to hold this until I have my quilt inserted into the binder.  Leave a generous tail of at least 4 inches
    behind the presser foot at the start. You will need this to join later. Short tails are way too fiddly to be  bothered with.
  9. I find it works best to push the binding tail coming out of the back of the binder through the machine to the back & have it resting on my table at the back. Ensure it feeds evenly from there into the binder.  Keep an eye on this from time to time as you work as you do NOT want the binding to go into the binder twisted.
  10. Feed the trimmed quilt sandwich into the “mouth” of the quilt binder. I do NOT start at a corner as the ends would be too difficult to join. Rather start somewhere in the middle of one of the sides. Make sure that the edge of the quilt (the raw
    trimmed edge) is right up against the BACK of the mouth of the binder
    attachment. Think “gag” and you’ll get the picture! It you do not ensure that
    the quilt edge rides right up against the back of the “mouth” at all times, the
    binding will not fit closely around the edge of the quilt.

    what I have termed the "mouth" of the binder

10. Select whatever stitch you would like to sew down your binding. Traditionally binding was sewn by a tiny hand stitching but since we are not going to do that here, you
may choose a straight stitch OR…here’s a novel thought: what about one of those hundreds of decorative stitches that the Janome Horizon has (or your sewing machine may have)?? On this particular quilt I used Horizon Quilt category stitch
# 100 which I left at the default setting of SW 7, SL2.5. When I use this stitch   again I  think I might open up the stitch length a little. Another stitch I use  often for stitching my binding down is Horizon Quilt category stitch #108.  On the Janome MC 11000 Special Edition these stitches are Decorative # 24 and Quilt #38.

11. Now check that your needle and stitch path is where you want it to be: straddling
the edge of the binding (in the case of a decorate stitch)? Or just to the right
of the edge of the binding? You can either move your needle position if you are
doing a straight stitch OR you can move the quilt binder attachment slightly to
the left or right until you are satisfied with the position.  Tighten the base plate screws.

12. Start stitching slowly. However, once you have mastered this technique and have gained  confidence, you will be able to breeze along at top sewing speed from corner to
corner. I have managed to literally HALVE the time it took me to attach a binding
by machine.  Nevermind the many hours it would take to hand sew a binding if I had ever been so inclined.

13. I will conceed that the corners are a little more effort but the way I look at it is that I
was stopping at the corners to fold my mitered corner before anyway, so what’s the
difference? The first quilt you do might have you scratching your head…….but persevere and PRACTICE and I promise you that you will master  and LOVE this Quilt Binder. Ask me how I know: I was very sceptical and  unenthusiastic when the Quilt Binder landed on my desk just over a year ago. I  was a snobby quilter who thought she had her double continuous binding down pat,  thank you very much. I was proud I could complete a queen sized quilt from cutting the binding strips to folding up the completed quilt in under 1 ½ hours.  I’m not lying…….I timed myself many times.  Now that I have practiced and have mastered the different technique of the Quilt Binder……I am SOLD!! It has me doing the
binding on a queen sized quilt in under an hour…..no kidding.  Once again I timed myself.

So HOW DO I TURN THOSE CORNERS  with the Janome Quilt Binder? See Part 2 coming soon on THIS blog.

About lizafrica

I am the National Education Manager for Janome & Elna Canada (including Artistic Creative products) and I LOVE to sew! I have been employed full time in the sewing and quilting industry for almost 30 years so I bring a wealth of sewing knowledge & expertise to this blog. I enjoy all forms of sewing from quilting to sewing garments to machine embroidery and software. Pretty much everything in my life is seen through the eyes of a passionate sewer! I am constantly on the look out for fun, innovative and inspiring ideas to share with you all on this blog. I also love to read, knit , travel and spend time with my family and friends.
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  1. Robby says:

    Hi Liz, I have a question concerning the binding foot. I have been challenged to come up with 5 other uses for the binding attachment. Can you help me out?


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