Adding Quilt Borders

©2007 Publications International, Ltd. Square corners are a common form of quilt corners. See more pictures of quilt borders and patterns.

Add quilt borders that are not quilt pieces simply by sewing strips of fabric (of the desired width) to the long sides of the quilt. Trim the ends of the strips even with the short sides of the quilt. Then stitch strips of fabric to the short sides, stitching across the borders previously applied.

Quilt Borders and Patterns


Press the borders and the seam allowances away from the center of the quilt. If there is more than one border, apply the borders in the same order for each.

In certain quilts, mitered corners, which require a little more time and care, look better than the square or butted corners above. Find the center of each border strip and the center of each side of the quilt. One side at a time, pin the border and stitch, beginning and ending 1/4 inch from the edge of the quilt top. (Borders need strips longer than the sides for mitering.)

©2007 Publications International, Ltd. Mitered corners may take more time, but the end product can be worth it.

With right sides together, fold the quilt top diagonally, taking care to match seams and the edges of the borders. Use a ruler and pencil to extend across the border strips to the line formed by the fold.

Taking care not to snag seam allowances, stitch from the inside edge of the border to the outer corner on the marked line. Trim the ends of the border strips and press the seam open. Repeat for each corner.


Not what you're looking for? Try:

  • Several steps go into Finishing a Quilt. Gain tips for each of them in this helpful article.
  • Learn How to Quilt or brush up on the basics with our refresher course.