Andrea Funk

By: Andrea Funk on August 21st, 2017

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The Difference between a Binding and a Border on a T-shirt Quilt

Q & A About T-shirt Quilts

 

We are frequently asked what the difference is between a binding and a border on a T-shirt quilt. If you are unfamiliar with quilts and quilting terms, this might be a question you have asked.

To answer that, let’s first look at the mandatory parts of a T-shirt quilt.

The Mandatory Parts of a T-shirt Quilt

  • Quilt Top
    The quilt top is the front of your quilt. If the quilt is a T-shirt quilt, top is made up of T-shirts blocks that are pieced together.
  • Batting
    The batting is the “stuffing” that is in the middle of a quilt.
  • Backing Material 
    The backing material is the fabric you see on the back of a quilt.
  • Binding 
    The binding is the material that goes around the outside of the quilt. About ¼" of the binding is seen from the top, the side and the back of a quilt. The binding is used to hide the raw edges of the quilt top, batting and backing materials. 

As you see, the binding is a mandatory part of a T-shirt quilt. The binding finishes off the raw edges of the quilt top, the batting and the binding.


Discover more about having a quilt made with your T-shirts or other clothing items. 
Our T-shirt Quilt Buyers Guide can help you know what you want your quilt to look like and what to look for in a quilt maker. 

T-shirt Quilt Buying Guide


binding on a tee shirt quiltAbout the Binding

  • All T-shirt quilts will have a binding and if there is not a binding; it’s then called a blanket.
  • You can see the binding from the front, back and sides of the T-shirt quilt.
  • Bindings are typically the same size from quilt to quilt. If you are looking at a Too Cool T-shirt Quilt, the binding is about ½" wide on the front and back of a quilt.
  • Typically, bindings are made out of 100% cotton fabric.
  • Bindings can be the same color as the backing material. They can also be made out of a contrasting color or even from a printed or batik material.
  • A binding does add a thin frame around the entire quilt.

So a binding is a mechanical part of a T-shirt quilt and one will be on every T-shirt quilt.

sorority tshirt quiltAbout Borders

A border, on the other hand, is purely an aesthetical part of a T-shirt quilt and thus you have a choice to add one or not. A border is a frame that goes around the outside of the pieced T-shirt blocks and is actually pieced as part of the quilt top. As such, the border is quilted, as is the rest of the quilt.

A border is on the face of a quilt and thus, you cannot see the border from the back of the quilt. Typically made from T-shirt fabric, a border can be a simple frame or it can be designed to accent the colors in the quilt. Borders can be various widths – from 2" to 12". They can be made from one solid color material or from pieced blocks of various colors.

Borders are optional, but can add a pizzazz to any T-shirt quilt. 

photographs

Choosing a Border ... or Not 

Is a border right for your quilt? Consider using a border if:

  • You want a larger quilt than your T-shirts will allow.
  • You would like your quilt to stand out.
  • You like how a border looks.
  • Your budget allows you to add one. Adding a border increases the price of a quilt two way. They increase the size of the quilt which translates into a more expensive quilt. It also increases the price because of the added work the border entails 

border on Florida T-shirtDon’t opt for a border if:  

  • Your quilt is already the size you would like.
  • Your budget does not permit the additional cost.
  • You just don’t like the look of a border.

A T-shirt quilt looks great with or without a border and adding one is your choice. But, a binding is not optional – it’s an essential part of any quilt.

Too Cool T-shirt Quilts has many border styles you can choose from for your quilt. Remember a border increases the size of a quilt and increases the price. Read more about adding a border to your quilt here. 


Discover more about having a quilt made with your T-shirts or other clothing items. 
Our T-shirt Quilt Buyers Guide can help you know what you want your quilt to look like and what to look for in a quilt maker. 

T-shirt Quilt Buying Guide


binding and border on a quilt

Back to: Planning Your T-shirt Quilt