Choosing a Quilt Border

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Here’s a quilt that I made over the last couple days. I copied a pattern from a baby quilt top that I purchased on eBay, so I was making up the directions as I went along. The quilt is for a challenge that allows only red and white fabric, and my goal was to only use fabrics from my stash. Here is the quilt without borders.

Quilt top, no borders

The next step was to select border fabric. Since I was using my stash, I didn’t have enough of the darker reds to make a border. The fabric was also slightly on the orange-y side and very difficult to match.

I ended up making a trip to the quilt shop for fabric (not in the original plan). I bought a red tone on tone, as well as a white.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Auditioning borders, red fabric only

I admit that I liked this, although it seemed very stark in contrast to the quilt. However it matched the colors well and did not wash out the tiny red/cream print. (Sorry for the yellowing in the photos.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Red border with 1/4" white flange

 

I liked this very much. It was colorful and set off the colors in the quilt. I had a winner!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Oops! A flange wout cut off all the points on my quilt. That's not going to work!

Another idea was to have a double flange, with red being the main color and then a small strip of white. However I quickly realized that would cut off the points on my quilt.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Simple Red Border

I finally opted for a small, 1.5″ red border to frame the quilt.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I struggled with how to finish the quilt. I finally decided to use the background fabric in the border. It gave the quilt a soft, traditional look that is quite nice. I will bind it in red. After all my playing around yesterday, it was very clear how much a border can change the look of the quilt. This is why people recommend that you do not commit to a border fabric until after the inside of the quilt is finished.

 

Finished Quilt Top

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