When I finish a quilt top, one of two things tends to happen. First, a huge sigh of relief and immediate shipping to my longarmer. Alternatively, I get an iffy feeling about it. "Is it truly done? It needs something." (I just finished a project that I was so sick of working on that I ignored that feeling and shipped it anyway-- it happens!)
Sometimes, the quilt tells you what it wants! I have seen lovely quilts finished with both uneven and straight edges. There's no "right" way, it's just your way!
Let's look at Stars and Crosses as an example. There are several different ways to finish this beauty.
Stars and Crosses by Paper Pieces®
1. You can appliqué the uneven edges to a background. This really highlights the EPP portion and makes it pop. You can choose to hand or machine appliqué, in a blending or contrasting thread. I love how all these little decisions can change the finished look of your quilt. We recommend doing a blind stitch by hand.
You can choose to appliqué to a whole cloth background fabric, or fabric strips to reduce bulk. You'll end up having to cut your into your whole cloth to remove the paper pieces, just something to consider.
2. You can finish out the uneven edges to be straight by EPPing half square triangles in all the uneven spots.. Side note: For a hexagon project, you can download our Hexagon Finishing Guide here. It shows you all the nifty pieces you'll need to finish your hexies with a straight edge!
Paper Pieces Hexagon Finishing Guide
3. You can trim the uneven edges to be straight. This will reduce the size of your entire quilt, but it's by far the fastest method. Be sure to keep your rulers straight along the entire cut, or you'll end up with wonky edges that are hard to correct. For this project, your border honeycombs would become half honeycombs- still a beautiful look!
4. You could leave the edges uneven and bind it as is, but honestly, that's a big task to take on. It would look cool when finished, but I like that method better for something like our Double Wedding Ring.
No matter how you finish your quilt, it's still going to be beautiful and cherished. If you start a finish and decide you don't like it, change it! It's never too late until it's gifted.
For more detailed instructions on finishing your quilts, click here!