How To Make A 5 Inch Sleeve

In order to display your quilt in the show, you may need to add a sleeve to the back. We will provide a demonstration of making the sleeve at a future meeting. In addition, samples of each type of sleeve will be on display at Milltown meetings.

  • If your quilt is more than 40” wide, a sleeve is needed. (Wall hangings that are smaller than 40" do not need sleeves.)
  • If your quilt is longer than 92" you will need to make a temporary sleeve that is 92" from the bottom of the quilt, so that the quilt does not drag on the floor. The top of the sleeve should measure 92” from the bottom of the quilt.
  • If your quilt is shorter than 92" then you have a choice of using a permanent or a temporary sleeve that is placed at the top of your quilt back. Examples of each type of sleeve are provided.

For Permanent Sleeve attached with the binding

Cut a 10 1/2" strip the width of your finished quilt. Fold back the two ends about an inch and stitch. Fold sleeve in half lengthwise, placing wrong sides together (your strip will now be 5 1/4 inches wide). After you have sewn the binding to the front of the quilt, place the sleeve on the back of the quilt with the cut edges of the sleeve even with the cut edge of the binding. Pin in place. Stitch sleeve in place, stitching on your original stitching line. Fold binding over to the back and stitch it down, as you normally would. To stitch the bottom of the sleeve in place, it is a good idea to create a bit of "slack" in your sleeve when you sew down the bottom. This will leave some space for the hanging rod and allow your quilt to hang smoothly. In order to do this, use the pressed edge of the bottom of the sleeve as a guide. Slide the edge up about 1/4 inch, pin and stitch.

Removable Sleeve to be attached after the binding is in place

Cut a 10 1/2" strip the width of your finished quilt. Fold back the two ends about an inch and stitch. Fold sleeve in half lengthwise WRONG sides together (your strip will now be 5 1/4 inches wide). Stitch 1/4" from raw edge. Go back to the ironing board and re-press, this time pulling the seam to the center back of the sleeve. Pin the top of the sleeve in place on your quilt and blind stitch by hand, being careful not to catch the front of the quilt. If your quilt is longer than 92 inches, measure up from the bottom of the quilt. Place the top of the sleeve at the 92 inch mark. To stitch the bottom of the sleeve in place, it is a good idea to create a bit of "slack" in your sleeve when you sew down the bottom. This will leave some space for the hanging rod and allow your quilt to hang smoothly. In order to do this, use the pressed edge of the bottom of the sleeve as a guide. Slide the edge up about 1/4 inch, pin and stitch.

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