Sunday, July 17, 2011

Fusible Thread Tutorial - Featured Blogger Amelia

Has anyone heard of fusible thread??
Up until a few weeks ago.. I hadn't! Nor had I any idea what to use it for... Lucky for me there are so many people out there WAY smarter than me that can help us along....
So, I'm excited to Introduce you to another Featured blogger... Amelia from Stitch 'n' bits. She has a tutorial for us, using Fusible thread with binding...
and a GIVEAWAY to win a spool of fusible thread to try....
 Amelia you have my full attention!

Hi, I'm Amelia and I'm really happy to be here on Bec's blog (which I absolutely love) to share a little tutorial about fusible thread and machine binding.

My favourite part of making a quilt is picking out the fabrics and piecing the top, closely followed by binding the quilt. The reason that I like the binding stage so much is that I can see that the quilt is so close to becoming a beautiful and functional item. It means I'm nearly finished and I'll soon get to see the look on the face of the person that I'm giving the quilt to!! I love it :)

The good thing about the method I'm about to show you is that it gives me a sturdy binding and is quicker too. I have tried all sorts of methods and still love to hand bind, but this just gives you one more option.

Here's the quilt that I'm going to bind. It's 20 inches square and I'm making it into a cushion cover:

First up, you make the binding and attach it to the front of the quilt as you usually would. I make my binding using 2.25 inch wide strips because I love a snug fit on the quilt, but if you like a wider binding or looser fit on the quilt, use 2.5 inches or whatever you normally use. Bec has a fantastic tutorial on binding that will get you started.

Fusible Thread ....
 I've only tried Benz Fuse but there are many different brands out there. If you google "fusible thread" you should find a brand that you can purchase near you.

I have seen many uses for fusible thread online (applique, hemming and binding just to mention a few) and many different ways to use it when binding too. I'm not saying that this is the only way or the proper way, this is just the way I do it. So feel free to have a play and see what works for you!
So let's get started ........

1. WIND BOBBIN: First up, wind the fusible thread onto the bobbin. Do not thread the machine with fusible thread!!!
2. ZIG ZAG: Working from the top side of your quilt, along one side of the seam allowance of your binding stitch a small to medium  zigzag stitch. The zigzag allows the fusible thread to cover a larger surface area than a straight stitch. It's important to stay inside the seam allowance!! Stop just before the next corner mitre.
Repeat with the other 3 sides of your quilt.

3. PRESS: I place baking paper under the binding to stop the fusible thread from potentially melting onto the ironing board (you could also use an ironing cloth instead of baking paper too).
Then on the front side of the quilt  "press"  (please don't "iron" back and forth) the binding out over the edges so it can be wrapped around the side of your quilt. Once again I use the baking paper under the binding to stop any loose threads sticking to my iron. Do this to all four sides.
Turn your quilt over and from the back side press down the binding, mitring the corners as you go (baking paper on top this time). I press each section for approx a count of 10, but read your manufacturer's instructions to check the recommendation for your fusible thread.
It's important that you make sure that the binding on the back covers where the binding is stitched down from the front.
One of the good things about fusible thread is that it holds the binding down firmly so you don't need any pins or clips. You should still be able to lift any sections that aren't quite right and re-press them if you require though.

4. STITCH: I don't have a preference between hand stitching or machine stitching the binding down. I use both methods depending on the quilt and it's use. E.g. I'd probably hand stitch for an heirloom quilt or something where I don't want the stitches visible on the back side of the quilt, but I'd machine bind a quilt that is going to be robustly used and frequently washed. So the choice is yours, if you would like to hand stitch the binding, feel free to do so and once again you can follow Bec's fabulous binding tutorial to complete your quilt.

If you choose to try machine binding , please follow along with the rest of this tutorial ...

Part way down one side of your quilt, start stitching in the ditch along the seam where you attached your binding.
Once you've sewn a few inches, take a glance at the back of the quilt and make sure that you are catching the binding on the back as you sew (you might want to check this a few times as you sew around the entire quilt).
Slow down as you get to the corners, this will help you be more accurate with catching the binding fabric on the back of the corners. Sometimes I pin the corner mitres before I start stitching and remove them as I get to each pin. 
When you get to a corner, stop, pivot and continue down the next side.
Repeat for all four sides of the quilt. Overlap the beginning and end stitches slightly. Clip your threads.

The stitches should be nearly invisible on the front.
Turn your quilt over to check that the binding is stitched down fully on the back of your quilt. I like the stitches to be a few millimetres (approx 1/8 inch) away from the edge but they might be a bit further away if you've chosen to use a wider binding to start with.
If you've missed a couple of little spots on the back, please don't freak out! You can either restitch that small area by machine from the front or catch it with hand stitching from the back.
AND YOU'RE DONE!! Use & enjoy :)
Thanks Bec once again for having me. I think your Quilt Class 101 is fantastic and I can't wait to see all the finished quilts!!

What do you think??? I want to try it. Thank you for Sharing that with us...
If you would like to WIN a spool of fusible thread to try??? Amelia is having a GIVEAWAY on her blog HERE right now...
Thanks Amelia!! xx


  1. I wonder if that thread would work to secure yo yo's. I've had problems with the stitching breaking on all of mine. hmmmmm


  2. I've never heard of that. Thanks for teaching me about something new!

  3. Love this! Going to google this right now. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Something to try, that's for sure.

  5. Yes, I have heard of that and used it before. It was shown to me way back in 2003 when I bought my first embroidery sewing machine because there are techniques in machine embroidery that utilize this thread. In a demonstration with a Viking educator that came to the store I shop in she gave a VERY cautionary warning ~ BE SURE TO MARK THOSE BOBBINS WELL which you have wound with this thread. You certainly do not want to make a dress or worse yet, a swimming suit using that for someone else. They may not be very pleased when they wear that dress in the rain or hit the water in their brand new swimming suit. LOL

  6. Great Tutorial, I will definitely be hunting out some of this thread thanks

  7. Wow this is really neat! I am definitely keeping this tutorial handy! Thanks so much, I had no idea such a product existed, it helps keep that stinkin binding in place bc as a new quilter, I feel it's ALL over and not quite even for me....thanks again!

  8. I love this idea. I am the queen of the seam ripper!

  9. Never heard of fusible thread. Looks like it would come in handy for binding. Thanks for the tutorial.

  10. Never even heard of fusible thread, but will definitely give this a try as it seems it makes the binding process so much easier. Thanks for sharing.

  11. These fabrics have a real Jan Constantine style to them - Her luxury cushions are a style masterpiece and can be found at Amara online.

  12. paisleyandpolkadot@gmail.comJuly 19, 2011 at 3:27 AM

    Ok, so I may just be having a moment right now, but the fusible thread cannot be used in the machine, correct? Or it can, but only as a bobbin thread and not the top thread? If you can only use it by hand, I wasn't sure why you would wind a bobbin at all.

    Like I said...I just may be having one of those days... :)


  13. Awesome tutorial. I have never heard of fusible thread but I definitely want to try it. I have such a hard time getting machine binding done to my satisfaction. This looks like it might help a lot. thanks!

  14. Well presented. Thanks for the tutorial. I'll gonna try making a quilt by following your steps shared above.

    Lisa from Electric Bass Guitar

  15. I tried using the fusible thread as suggested, and was didn't work at all for me.


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