Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Tool Time with Barbara and the CutRite Bind Up Tool ( 2 guests today...)

Greetings, Quilters! I'm Barbara from Cat Patches and this is my first guest post EVER! Today, I'm here to tell you about a tool that saved my quilting life! No kidding. Before I discovered this tool, I couldn't finish the ends of my bindings to save my quilting soul. There seemed to be no tutorial, written, filmed or demonstrated, that could help me with my bothersome bindings. No matter how careful I was, they always ended up too short or too long. Sound familiar? I was on the verge of committing hari kari with my rotary cutter when the Angels of Binding smiled on me and directed me to the CutRite Bind Up Tool.

Here's what it looks like when you take it out of the package:

So how does this miracle of modern quilting work? Before I go on, I should say that this tutorial assumes that you can get your bindings sewn onto the quilt. I'm going to show you how to use the CutRite Bind Up tool to get a nice smooth mitred seam to finish them off . . . with no crying, moaning, shrieking, or cursing.

First, be sure to leave yourself a nice tail when you start sewing and then again at the end. I like to leave at least 10 inches at both ends, if possible.

Next, with the binding ends still folded in half horizontally, bring them together until they meet at the spot where you would like your finishing seam to be and give them a good finger press, leaving a vertical crease on each side.

Then open each side so that the inside of the binding is facing up. Using your favorite marker, mark a "+" over the horizontal and vertical creases on both the right and left sides of the binding strip.

Now you are ready for the CutRite Bind Up tool. Starting on the left, place the cross from the tool over your marked "+" so that the horizontal and vertical lines match up.

(Pause here for just a moment to admire my lovely manicure.)

Just slide the tool into position.

Notice that if you are working with the left side of the binding, the "L" should read in the correct direction. (Note that the "R" for the "Right" side is upside down and backwards because I am working with the left side of the binding.)

Once you have the "+" lined up, you are ready to use your rotary cutter to cut the excess binding strip away.

Have you ever tried to hold a tool, a strip of fabric, a camera, a rotary cutter, AND press the shutter? (Don't try this at home unless you have a tourniquet, plenty of gauze close by, and paramedics on standby.)

Next, I want you to notice that the point is cut from the lower corner of the CutRite Bind Up tool.

Once you've cut the excess from the binding strip, slide the tool up so that the bottom edge is lined up with the bottom edge of your binding strip.

Then, use your rotary cutter to cut that little corner off the bottom edge of your left binding strip.

Great! Now you're ready to start on the right side of the binding strip.

First, rotate the tool so that the "R" for "Right" is reading the right direction. The "L" for "Left" will now be upside down and backwards. The right side of your binding strip should already have the "+" marked as it was on the left side.

Now repeat the steps from before. Slide the tool so that the "+" from the fabric is lined up with the "+" on the CutRite Bind Up tool.

Then, use your rotary cutter to cut the excess from the right side of the binding strip.

Now, notice that the cut corner of the tool is at the top instead of the bottom, as it was when you did the left side. Slide the top of the CutRite Bind Up tool even with the top of the right side of the binding strip.

Then use your rotary cutter to cut the corner from the right side of the binding strip.

Now use the excess binding you cut away to wipe the sweat from your brow, and then prepare to be amazed!

Bring the diagonal cut ends of your binding strip right sides together and pin. Notice that because you've cut the little corners off each side, the strips will line up perfectly, with no guess work. Pin if you like. I prefer to pin. You might have to bunch up the quilt a little to bring those ends together, but the ends of the binding strips should be pinned flat and smooth. Make sure there are no twists in the strips and that they are right sides together.

Now. Sew the ends together using a 1/4-inch seam.

Open up your binding strip and finger-press your seam open (or not, whichever you prefer).

Then fold the binding strip in half horizontally and pin it to the edge of your quilt. It should fit perfectly if you've followed all the steps correctly.

Finish sewing the remaining section of the binding to your quilt, and you will be ready to fold it over and finish it off!

. . . And you'll walk in fields of gold.

No disclaimer here. I've been singing the praises of the CutRite Bind Up tool on my blog ever since I discovered it. I have not been compensated by the manufacturer to say any of this. My opinion about the effectiveness and usefulness of this tool are my own.

HowEVER, that didn't stop me from shamelessly hitting up the manufacturer at Quilter's Paradise for a tool to give away to one lucky winner. Do you think this is something that could solve all of your binding problems? I'm giving one away on my blog. If you'd like to win one, go to my blog right here for all the details.

Thank you, Madame Samm, for the opportunity to guest blog today!


  1. Welcome to Sew We Quilt - you did an excellent job, even with the multi-tasking with all those items and then click a photo, too.

  2. Wish I'd known about this handy dandy little tool several years ago! Your post was very enjoyable to read!

  3. I can see how that tool is a must have, I have unpicked this bit of binding up so many times!

  4. Yes, I would like one of these. I always struggle finishing the binding!

  5. What a great looking tool. Thanks for sharing!

  6. I need this tool - it is INDEED a miracle!!!!

    sao in Midlothian, VA

  7. What a clever idea - now why didn't I think of that? I moan and groan every time I have to miter that binding and this would just make it a snap! I've not seen this little tool before but you can bet I'll be looking for it. blessings, marlene

  8. what a nifty tool. I always had trouble with ending my binding.

  9. Wow, great tool. I don't do my bindings right, so this would help!

  10. This is definitely a cool tool! Thanks so much for a great tutorial...and I think I go to the same manicurist. LOL Great job, Barbara! Tell Gracie and George that Moses said howdy!

  11. Sure does make that chore a lot easier! Thanks for showing us how to do it Barb!!!

  12. Good Morning Barbara...I have this tool...was in my stocking , now I have a pretty good idea why it is sew important...my quilting friends are all sew smart lol...
    great share

  13. This looks like a tool that would be a welcome thing in my sewing room for sure. Still being very new at doing bindings, I'm sure it would be a great help. Thanks for showing this tool to us.

  14. Thank you Barb! I love the tutorial - great tool!

  15. Thanks for the tutorial on how to use the binding tool. Very useful!

  16. I recently made the trek to Quilter's Paradise for this tool and it was worth the drive and the money! Highly recommended for anyone!

  17. Going to have to find this tool! THanks for a great tut..and congrats on your first!

  18. what a great tut....I also love the quilt you did the tut on....very pretty....

  19. What a brilliant idea!
    Thanks Barbara!

  20. what a great tool and a great tutorial!! Thanks for sharing

  21. I've never seen that. That's a great tool. Anything to make the binding easier is good.

  22. I am amazed!!! That little tool is a miracle!! Thanks for the tute!

  23. Ah, so that's how it's done...thanks for bringing this tool to my attention.

  24. No second guessing with that tool!
    Beckie in Brentwood, TN

  25. you're a funny gal! Excellent tutorial and plenty of laughs--thanks! I think I'll head over to your blog and try to win this puppy!

  26. Wow, what a great tut. Not your last! I wish I'd had this tool last night-I would have got lots more sleep-instead I was tearing my hair out-and some stitches too! I am going to get one of these real soon.

  27. What a GREAT tutorial! Thanks for sharing...this is EXACTLY what my Mom needs. I would love to win it for her. Even if I don't win one, I'll be buying her one. Great tool.

    Sandi B
    sandhill57 at sbcglobal dot net

  28. Fantastic blog post - For my two cents , if people wants to merge PDF or PNG files , my kids found a service here ALTOMerge.


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