Ok, so "phobia" might be a bit dramatic, but it's no secret that I have strong aversion to one important step in quilting: the binding. I enjoy sketching designs, I love pulling fabrics, and I adore quilting. Heck, I even don't mind all the cutting and piecing that happens in between. When I get to that very last [crucial] step, though, I often stall out and my quilts languish in almost-completed limbo. Making and attaching binding just feels like a huge, boring chore that happens at the end of all the fun stuff. But I as time goes on, I want to make (and bind!) more and more quilts. So I've been trying to find a way to trick myself into enjoying binding... and I think I've found the solution with my new two-pronged approach!
Step 1: Cut and prepare the quilt binding BEFORE I begin piecing.
Yep, that's it. I know, I know. It sounds like a silly, simplistic solution, but if I can "reward" myself with the more enjoyable piecing and quilting AFTER I've prepared the binding, then I'm soooo much closer to done from the get go, and I've reordered the steps from fun/boring to boring/fun!
Step 2: Use Binding Babies from Doohikey Designs.
I've loved seeing the Binding Babies popping up in sewing media this past year, and at first, I wanted one just for the adorableness factor. But when I started brainstorming this winter about how to get my quilts bound faster, it occurred to me that Binding Babies would really serve a double purpose by being cute AND making binding easier to store and untwirl. So I went right ahead and ordered a few for my studio (plus one for my mom ; ) You can even customize the color and hairstyle, so you can get one that looks just like you!
Now that they're here and being put to work, I love that I can wrap my binding and set it aside where it won't unwind as I work on other quilting tasks. And then I can pop one of the girls on a spool holder next to my machine and easily unspool binding as I stitch it onto the quilt. Bonus - if I have to get up from my machine for a minute, my binding stays neat and ready instead of me having to set down a big heap of it from my lap or gather it up from where's its unrolled on the floor.
So that's it - my two new solutions involve a little psychology and a lot of cuteness! Maybe one or both can make your next quilt endeavor more enjoyable. Do you have a least favorite part of quilting? What tricks or tools have you implemented to help you through the quilting process?
P.S. Want to win a set of Binding Babies for yourself? Enter here!