Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Tuesday Tutorial – Mile a Minute Quilt – Step 6

Sashing and border

From your remaining sashing fabric cut 1 ½” strips, you will probably need 7 - 1 ½” strips.  You can join these strips end to end.  I like to use a diagonal join using the Quick Quarter Ruler; however a straight join will also work, just be sure to cut your selvages off.

Diagonal join using the Quick Quarter Ruler

How to add borders and how to square a quilt (this makes it easier to quilt especially for longarm quilters).

First measure the length of your quilt right down the middle (very center).  To make this easier I fold my quilt in quarters and measure the lengthwise middle fold and then multiply this number by two.  Mine measured 35 ¼” X 2 = 70 ½” 

Measure center of quilt lengthwise

You will now want to cut two sashing strips to this length.  Fold your sashing strip in four and mark the middle and quarters with a pin and do the same with the long sides of your quilt top. 

Mark middle and quarters on Sashing
Mark middle and quarters on Quilt top

Now with your sashing and quilt right sides together match the middles and quarter pins, also match and pin the outside edge of the quilt and sashing, ease and pin the sashing and quilt top together.  I know you’ve all heard about measure through the middle, however I also know that people still have trouble with the borders fitting – most of us will have to do some easing. 

Ease quilt top and sashing

If you find either the quilt or the sashing to be a little larger, sew with the tighter fabric on top, the pressure foot and the feed dog will help to ease out the fullness.  Once your long sashing is sewn on, press toward the sashing.   Now repeat this step for the top and bottom of your quilt.  Measure through the middle horizontally, cut two strips, mark the middle and quarters, pin, ease, sew and press.

Main border

Once again, we will do the long sides first, so measure the length in the middle of your quilt. 
For my border I cut the material lengthwise because of how I wanted the stripes to look.  Also if you cut your borders this way you don’t have to piece them. 

I cut my border fabric into four 10 inch strips.  You will need two strips that are the length of your quilt and then the two for the top and bottom will be the width of your quilt plus 20” that you’ve added for the two side borders, this is a warning so you don’t hack off the length and then find yourself short for the top and bottom.   My long sides were 73 inches and my top and bottom measured 78 inches.

Add your borders, like the sashing, pinning, easing and pressing toward the border.
You are done your quilt top!

Beige Mile a Minute with 10 inch borders

Now - I have a Longarm special for you.  If you complete your Mile a Minute top and get it to me in May (or before) I will give you 50% off the longarm quilting price.  I will then reduce the discount by 10% each month until October (full price).  

Some details:
     For this special you can choose from one of my all-over pantograph designs. 
     Your backing fabric and batting must be 4 inches bigger or more on all four sides. 
     You can purchase batting from me if you like. 

Let’s get these lovely quilts finished and on your beds!


  1. This is such a great tutorial. I have emailed myself the 6 links and later I'm going to print them up and make one. Thank you for all the detailed instructions, it would be good to get rid of scraps and I love mindless sewing and pressing.

    1. Thanks Candace, I enjoy this block so much, have made several Mile a Minute quilts and I think there are at least another ten waiting in the drawer!