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Making Mitered Corners posted: 1/17/2003
by Ila McCallum Printable Page
Category: Piecing Method: All
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Mitered corners add a beautifully finished look to your quilts. They look hard to do, but are actually easy using this fold and mark method.

If you are planning several borders for your quilt and would like all of them to be mitered, prepare the borders and sew them together. That way you will be mitering only one larger border.

When you press the seams on the borders, press the seams on one side toward the center of the quilt and the next toward the edge of the quilt (away from the center). By doing this, the rows on your borders will "nest" together at the miter and will match exactly.

The borders must be longer than the sides of the quilt. An easy method of determining the extra length of the border is to add a length equal to the width of the border to each end of the side of the quilt top. Examples: If the border is 3 inches wide, make the border at least 3 inches longer on each end than side of the quilt top. If the border is 8 inches wide, make the border at least 8 inches longer on each end than the side of the quilt top.

Sew the borders to the sides of the quilt top using ¼" seams, stopping ¼" away from each end of the quilt top. Do not sew clear to the edge. You will have "floppy" corners hanging loose. This will provide for the extra material needed to create the mitered corner.

Start at the point and carefully match the two border seams folding the quilt center. Pin as you go. Because you pressed the seams in opposite directions, they should fit together easily and "nest" together. The matched seams will feel flat to the touch—no lump or valley where the seam lines abut. The folded edge will divide the angle into two even halves.

Fold Miter Line up a quilter's ruler along the folded edge and mark the border as an extension of the folded edge.
Ruler on Fold Pin and stitch along the marked line, starting at the intersection point of the quilt and the border and then sewing to the edge of the border. If it is easier for you to start at the edge of the border, you may do so. Either way be very careful not to stretch the seam - it is on the bias.
Mark on Seamline Remove the pins and open the seam to check the matching - now is the time to make adjustments, if necessary. Trim the seam to about 3/8 inch and press open.
Mitered Corner The corner should lay flat on the table when pressed.

Have a great day!

Ila's Quilt Studio
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