Now Touring: “Skip the Borders” by Julie Herman

by melissa on September 10, 2012

We’re very lucky to have such incredibly talented friends  for whom we’re able to give honestly positive reviews of the books they write. Julie Herman, one of our besties, falls right into this group with her first–and hot off the presses–book, Skip the Borders (Martingale, 2012). Julie, of Jaybird Quilts, was one of the very first bloggers we started following, and man, did she set the bar for first-class quilt blogging with her incredible photos, in-depth tutorials and charming glimpses into her behind-the-scenes life. We love Julie, and are so proud of what she’s done.

So that said, let’s talk about Skip the Borders. If a quilt were to “go commando,” it would be made without borders. And that’s what Julie’s done here — made 15 original quilt projects (with 14 of them quilted by the equally incredible Angela Walters — hey Angela, do you ever sleep, Girlfriend?!?) — all deliciously stripped down.

White Stars quilt

In Formation quilt

Julie starts off explaining that a borderless quilt requires a strong pattern or structure. This is Design Process 101 and it’s very helpful to start us all on our borderless-venture.

Julie’s not just talking. She holds a degree in design from Drexel University and really does know the rules she’s laying out.

Sometimes her approach uses a traditional block and enlarges it to take over the top, like White Stars or In Formation. Other times she’s combining two blocks to create perfection, as in Raspberry Dessert. But for each quilt, she emphasizes the importance of the binding in the design.

So yes, we recommend this book. It’s a great reference tome for your collection and we predict you’ll be racing to make a few of these freedom-loving beauties.

Raspberry Dessert quilt

Now, as part of her book tour, Julie wanted to start a little border discussion with a few well-chosen questions for the GenQ team. Here’s the back-and-forth:

Julie: All of the quilts in Skip the Borders are…borderless! Do you skip borders on most of your quilts?

Scott: Yeah, I’d say I skip the borders most of the time. I tend to veer away from that traditional concept. It’s because I like to design all the way out to the edge. Sometimes I will have a border, but part of the middle will break out into it. Sometimes I have a pieced border. And sometimes I just don’t want to mess with all the measuring and adjusting that borders require.

Julie: In the intro to my book I give you Permission to Break the Rules. Do you break some quilting rules? What is the number one rule you break and why?

Jake: Oh, the Quilt Police are going to howl in pain about this one, but I NEVER have measured out from my quilts’ centers and ends to determine what size my borders should be. I taught myself to quilt and figured that the best way to determine what size the borders should be was by first completely squaring a quilt with a couple of long and big rulers and carefully trimming until I made it straight. (I often oversize my quilts’ inside pieces to give myself enough fabric to trim down.) Then I just sew the darned strips of borders onto the edges and voila. My quilts lay flat. Might be luck, but there you have it.

Julie: It’s no secret that I love binding! In Skip the Borders, I’ve included an entire chapter on binding. So the million-dollar question is do you use bias or straight of grain most of the time? 

Vicki: Binding, to use bias or not…hmmm. First, there are only two criteria I use for using bias binding:

1) Is the edge scalloped or irregular?

2) Is the fabric I am using for the binding going to look better if I cut it on the bias?

Otherwise, I ONLY use the width of fabric (WOF) grain line bias. (I admit, a couple of times I have actually used the length of grain for my binding, but that was because it was perfect for the binding and leftover from a border on the quilt, and I only had a lengthwise piece.) I find there’s just enough give in the WOF strips for my binding and it helps the quilt edge lay nice and flat. It’s easy to stretch a bias binding out of whack when you sew it on; it takes concentration and patience–traits I sometimes lack by the time I get to the binding because I am probably approaching a deadline.

But having more staff than questions (and not wanting to leave anyone out), we added a few of our own:

Us:  Do you prefer hand-stitched or machine stitched borders, and why?

Melissa: Oh, hand-stitched, no question! I not only prefer the look, but I also enjoy the doing. It’s actually meditative for me to work those bindings by hand, hiding my stitches and tightening up the mitered corners. Plus, every time I’ve tried to machine-stitch the final step of a binding, it wasn’t a pretty sight. Why compound my gloriously horrible quilting with equally crummy binding?

Us: Do you miter your corners or do the squared-off edge thingy?

Tracy: I miter, but only because I know how to do it and I love the results. When I first started quilting, I did the squared edge thingy. It was easy and I could get it done quickly. As my quilting progressed, I wanted a more polished look so now I miter. Want me to show you how? ;-)

Us: What’s the greatest number of borders you’ve ever added to a quilt and why?

Megan: I have two quilts that have two borders. One (which is still just a lonely quilt top) because that’s what the pattern called for, and the other because the blocks I made– even with sashing–were too small for a good lap quilt, so I needed to add some square inches to fill it out. I made two borders purely as a lark, thinking, I guess, that considering how much I needed to add, one solid border at that size would have looked overwhelming. It turned out to be a great decision, because the borders set off the blocks quite nicely, if I do say so myself. But I will say that my favorite of all my quilts (and, frankly, I haven’t made all that many) has no borders at all!

The Fun’s Just Beginning!

Check out the other stops along Julie’s Skip the Borders blog tour. At each one you’ll find some fun & freebies to enjoy. As for us, we’re giving away two e-books ( PLEASE NOTE THESE ARE EBOOKS THAT YOU WILL DOWNLOAD!!) of Skip the Borders for you to enjoy. All we ask is that you tell us if you’ve “gone commando” with one of your quilts and if you enjoyed the experience? Answer below in our comments section and then make sure you check in at the other stops along Julie’s tour.

Sept. 12:      P.S. I Quilt 

Sept. 14:      Beyond the Reef

Sept. 17:      Pink Chalk Studio

Sept. 19:      Fat Quarter Shop

Sept. 21:      Bijou Lovely Designs

Sept. 24:      Red Pepper Quilts

Sept. 26:      Swatch and Stitch

Sept. 28:      Juicy Bits   

Oct. 1:        V. and Co.  

Oct. 2:        Martingale Publishing

Oct. 5:        Carolina Patchworks

Oct. 8:        I Am a Ginger Monkey

Oct. 10:       Blue is Bleu          

Oct. 12:       Quilting is My Therapy


Leave a Comment

{ 172 comments… read them below or add one }

Sarah Identicon Icon Sarah September 10, 2012 at 3:11 am

I was abou to say yes, I’ve made a “border free” quilt – but. Now I’m not sure! Like Julie, I’ve often used a border to make the final project big enough.

Once I made a quilt with 5 or 6 borders. It started out as a doll quilt with leftover tiny pinwheels, and I just started playing and it grew and grew.


Sarah Identicon Icon Sarah September 10, 2012 at 4:09 am

I think I go commando with all of quilts… in one way or another. Sometimes I don’t square up the finished quilt and let the edges be wonky (sort of a nod to those Gees Bend Quilts). I sort of love the look on improvised quilts.


Jane Identicon Icon Jane September 10, 2012 at 4:27 am

Haven’t gone borderless yet, but anything can happen. Thanks for the giveaway!


Alyce {Blossom Heart Quilts} Identicon Icon Alyce {Blossom Heart Quilts} September 10, 2012 at 4:27 am

I always go commando! The one time I didn’t was for my son’s transport I-spy quilt. It wasn’t an I-spy vomit quilt, but it still needed some “quietening” so I added a light grey with cars and trucks print to add some calm and size!


Becky Greene Identicon Icon Becky Greene September 10, 2012 at 4:41 am

I had never thought about the border/no border issue until I heard of Julie’s book. I think I need her advice because all of the big quilts I have made have had borders, though one is just a simple white sashing basically. I have made miniquilts, however, that have no borders. Julie is so amazing and talented and I would love to win a copy of her book – thanks for the chance !


Mary Identicon Icon Mary September 10, 2012 at 5:03 am

I have just finished a scrappy Halloween Bargello quilt, and it is going commando! I am going to do my first bias binding for it too. Thanks for the giveaway. Julie is awesome. Mary


Lee Identicon Icon Lee September 10, 2012 at 5:16 am

Congrats to Julie on her new book and thank you for the giveaway. I have skipped borders only on smaller sized quilts – lap and baby quilts.


Sally Identicon Icon Sally September 10, 2012 at 5:25 am

I “go commando” about half or two-thirds of the time; I only add a border if the quilt seems to demand it (like a sampler) or I’m peeved that I spent so much time piecing and it’s still too small to satisfy (like tumblers)!


M-R @ Quilt Matters Identicon Icon M-R @ Quilt Matters September 10, 2012 at 5:29 am

Oh, I’m a big fan of going commando…with my quilts. There’s this one: And this one: And this one: Well, you get the idea. Thanks for the giveaway! I’d love to win a copy of the book!


Nancy, Near Philadelphia Identicon Icon Nancy, Near Philadelphia September 10, 2012 at 5:34 am

I’ve gone borderless several times, and have never regretted it. Makes for a fresher, more “today” kind of quilt. And I’d LOVE to win a copy of Julie’s book!


Kathie L Identicon Icon Kathie L September 10, 2012 at 5:53 am

I just finished a borderless Raspberry Dessert quilt, using the pattern that was in a magazine not long ago. It’s now at the quilter’s and I can’t wait to see it finished. Great design, Julie.


Allison C Identicon Icon Allison C September 10, 2012 at 5:57 am

I just recently finished a quilt without a border and I loved the way it turned out. I’m planning on doing many more this way!


Mary P Identicon Icon Mary P September 10, 2012 at 6:11 am

Why yes, I’ve gone commando! Sometimes a quilt really doesn’t need a border and I’ve been very happy with the results.


flor rojas Identicon Icon flor rojas September 10, 2012 at 6:15 am

well I started to machine quilting these year, I was so traditional with the designs of my quilts the binding, the borders even the quilting all was made by me and by hand, but this year I started a revolution on my design table and I also started to use my sewing machine full time for quilting, I got a collection of country kraft magazines and my first internet following was Mccalls page, so you can see that just these year I discover the blogers world of quilting, and 8 started to breack all the rules, amazing how you encourage people and share inspiration, so now I am a rebel that also is learning to machine quilting following the bloggers, and I feel freee of doing anything possible in my little quilting room, thank you for sharing all your knowledge, hugs from Guatemala.


Alice Identicon Icon Alice September 10, 2012 at 6:27 am

Yippee! This books is so beautiful! I do borderless quilts because I like that look – blocks all the way to the edge. I do borders, too when needed, but I much prefer quilts that go all the way to the edge.


Lauren aka Giddy99 Identicon Icon Lauren aka Giddy99 September 10, 2012 at 6:39 am

I’m pretty new to quilting (I have three WIPs right now), and two of them are borderless. One of them is a GIANT eight-point star, and the other is a pretty dramatic color-wheel strip quilt. Yay for no borders!


Flor Rojas Identicon Icon Flor Rojas September 10, 2012 at 6:45 am

well I started machine quilting these year, everything I made was handmade by me, the binding, the borders even the quilting, now I am a full time machine quilting person, also Iam learning to free hand machine quilting following the bloggers world that I recently discover, it´s amazing how you encourage people to rediscover the enjoy of quilting and also to design quilts, now I fell free of breaking rules, and my friend I really enjoy it, lol, so everything related with that I am a follower, thanks for the inspiration, from my litlle quilt room here in Guatemala a big hug


What Comes Next? Identicon Icon What Comes Next? September 10, 2012 at 7:40 am

oh yes, I’ve gone commando several times – my quilts love the freedom!


Melissa Identicon Icon Melissa September 10, 2012 at 7:50 am

On my minis and baby quilts I’ve stopped putting on borders. That way I have more room for blocks!


Sallie Identicon Icon Sallie September 10, 2012 at 8:06 am

I’ve never made a quilt without borders. Thanks for the chance to win Julie’s new book!


Heather Identicon Icon Heather September 10, 2012 at 8:24 am

I haven’t skipped the borders yet, but Julie’s quilts sure do inspire me to give it a try! Love the previews of her new book!


Kacey P. Identicon Icon Kacey P. September 10, 2012 at 8:41 am

I have done one quilt without borders – because that’s how the pattern came! Two others that I’ve done I chose to add the border to make the quilt bigger. At the end of the day, I like both ways :)


RenaM Identicon Icon RenaM September 10, 2012 at 7:16 pm

I’ve done a few commando quilts and really love the look. Guess it depends on the quilt pattern. This book looks like it has soe fresh ideas. Would love to win a copy


Rhonda aka Quilter in The Gap Identicon Icon Rhonda aka Quilter in The Gap September 10, 2012 at 9:04 am

I have never “gone commando” on my quilts but after seeing some of Julie’s I am wondering why not.


Kristi Van Os Identicon Icon Kristi Van Os September 10, 2012 at 9:32 am

I have pieced quite a lot of quilts without a borders. But I also have some that have 3 -4 borders that I love equally well.


Debbie H Identicon Icon Debbie H September 10, 2012 at 9:38 am

No, I haven’t gone commanndo yet, that’s why I need this book to show how to do it! Thanks!


Judith Reynolds Identicon Icon Judith Reynolds September 10, 2012 at 10:04 am

Wow, this takes the edge off. It looks like the patterns just continues. Great idea! Thanks for sharing…Judith, Texas


Amanda Identicon Icon Amanda September 10, 2012 at 10:06 am

This book look fantastic! I would say I “Go commando” on about 50% of my quilts. I will also say my favorite quilts usually don’t have borders. I should really remember that in the future! :)


Sandy D Identicon Icon Sandy D September 10, 2012 at 10:17 am

Yes as a matter of fact I have it is called BQ by Maple Island Quilts Inc. and I love the quilt .One of my daughters has been hinting to get it.I liked doing the quilt and I love the look of the quilt. It is the only larger quilt it is a “large lap” that I have done without a border but would love to do more.


Marcia K Identicon Icon Marcia K September 10, 2012 at 10:56 am

Yep, Commando it is! I’m just learning here… I didn’t know borders were required LOL. I just did me a hexagon quilt, and I designed it myself, so I just did my hexagons to the edge. Guess it wasn’t an oopsie afterall!


Ivy Identicon Icon Ivy September 10, 2012 at 1:32 pm

I almost always skip the borders and the sashing. Always have.


Carolyn Identicon Icon Carolyn September 10, 2012 at 3:09 pm

I went “commando” with my first quilt – didn’t know you were “supposed” to have borders. ;-)


ritainalaska Identicon Icon ritainalaska September 10, 2012 at 3:22 pm

i’ve made one without borders … a quilt as you go! this was fun, done when the last piece was joined. however, this really wasn’t what your were asking! i’ve a top made without borders, though, that just needs to have a backing attached and turned; then it will count!


Barb N Identicon Icon Barb N September 10, 2012 at 3:35 pm

Gone commando – that’s a great one! Yes, I’ve done that in the past when creating my own designs, and the pattern was enough to make the statement. Would love to read more about what Julie does without borders!


Debbie-Esch House Quilts Identicon Icon Debbie-Esch House Quilts September 10, 2012 at 3:50 pm

I’d say most of my quilts don’t have borders. Lately, the only time they have what might be called a border is if I float the blocks so that the background and border fabric are the same. I can’t wait to get a look at Julie’s book!


Debbie Yeager Identicon Icon Debbie Yeager September 10, 2012 at 4:02 pm

I must admit that most of my quilts DO have borders. BUT my current project is my first quilt without borders and it is lovely! I follow JayBird Quilts and wait to get the book! Julie’s designs are gorgeous!


Judie Harron Identicon Icon Judie Harron September 10, 2012 at 4:12 pm

Yes, I have completed a log cabin and a stash and slash quilt with no borders and used scrappy binding from the fabrics I used for the interior blocks. I loved it… a freeing experience. I would love to have a chance to win Julie’s Skip the Borders e-book…thanks for the chance.


Heather Identicon Icon Heather September 10, 2012 at 4:20 pm

Book looks great. My first quilt was made without borders – a blue and white Jacobs Ladder. I made it about 20 years ago, but it would probably look quite modern now, apart from the fact the the inconsistent seam allowance, and poly-cotton white means it is falling to pieces.


Mary W. Identicon Icon Mary W. September 10, 2012 at 4:20 pm

I’m a fairly new quilter so I haven’t “gone commando” yet, but after seeing Julie’s great designs, I think I’m ready to try! Her book would certainly inspire me!


Marilyn R Identicon Icon Marilyn R September 10, 2012 at 4:26 pm

Yup! I’ve gone commando and I like it! I made a small lap quilt that alternates between white on white with 30s fabric. It came out really cute, if I do say.


DianeY Identicon Icon DianeY September 10, 2012 at 4:39 pm

I’ ve gone commando in probably a third to half of the quilts I’ve done. When I do a border, it usually is a pieced one of some sort


Vickie Smith Identicon Icon Vickie Smith September 10, 2012 at 4:48 pm

I LOVE this book. Already have the book! I love all this new Modern quilt stuff. I am a TRUE ADDICT. Your have such afresh approach!


Lora Identicon Icon Lora September 10, 2012 at 4:49 pm

I “go commando” as often as possible. Like Julie, I don’t really consider a border when I am designing or planning a quilt, so very rarely feel the need to add one. The book looks great, thank for the opportunity to win a copy.


Becky Greene Identicon Icon Becky Greene September 10, 2012 at 4:53 pm

I had never thought of the border/no border issue before, but I have tended to use borders on all my large quilts. I have made many mini quilts with no borders. I will try to make it a point to lose the border on the next big quilt I make, but Julie’s book would certainly help :-)


PSJ Identicon Icon PSJ September 10, 2012 at 4:59 pm

I’ve skipped borders on baby quilts that had huuuuuuge blocks! I’m currently making a table runner with smaller blocks, and it’s getting multiple borders. One of these days I’ll find a happy medium… I hope…


Kathy h Identicon Icon Kathy h September 10, 2012 at 5:03 pm

Great quilts in the book. I had not thought of skipping borders before so have never gone commando yet. But I really like the look of those border less quilts.


Nancy R Identicon Icon Nancy R September 10, 2012 at 5:04 pm

I usually do add borders to enlarge the quilt and when hanging on a bed, the borders are often unnoticed. However, just finished a lap quilt with no borders. I think that is a first and have enjoyed not having to figure out borders. But I found borders also help me square up a quilt.


Mrs.Hearts Identicon Icon Mrs.Hearts September 10, 2012 at 5:05 pm

I “go commando” {borderless} whenever possible. I love the look. By the time I finish the blocks, I am ready to be done with the quilt, so NO borders, except when I need them to add inches to the quilt.


Michelle K Identicon Icon Michelle K September 10, 2012 at 5:24 pm

I’ve only been quilting for a couple of years.. All of my quilts have been commando so far! :)


Mary on Lake Pulaski Identicon Icon Mary on Lake Pulaski September 10, 2012 at 5:33 pm

I’ve made a few quilts that looked perfect without a border!


Lisa Lisa Identicon Icon Lisa Lisa September 10, 2012 at 6:09 pm

Yes! I’ve “gone commando!” Love it! I’d rather not mess with borders if I don’t have to :) Thanks for the chance to win Juiie’s book.


Jodie Identicon Icon Jodie September 10, 2012 at 6:28 pm

I have never gone commando on a quilt but I want to and this book seems like the perfect inspiration. Thanks for the review.


LindaB Identicon Icon LindaB September 10, 2012 at 6:29 pm

So far all my quilts have had borders, but If I had Julie’s new book I would be encouraged to give it a try….going borderless/commando sure gives a quilt a modern fresh look…LindaB


Brye Lynn Identicon Icon Brye Lynn September 10, 2012 at 6:42 pm

I have never gone without borders – but I find the idea very intriguing and this book looks fabulous. Thanks to Julie so leading the way.


Rhonda Desgranges Identicon Icon Rhonda Desgranges September 10, 2012 at 7:09 pm

I have never made a quilt without a border. Great giveaway! I think that I will have to try it
soon! Thanks for the chance to win!



Tamie Identicon Icon Tamie September 10, 2012 at 7:29 pm

I’ve made several quilts commando- probably long before it was the “modern” thing to do. I can’t wait to see the book.


Deb Identicon Icon Deb September 10, 2012 at 7:44 pm

Yes, I have. It was for my son in boy colors of blues, browns, and creams. It was perfect and didn’t need a border.


Lindsay F Identicon Icon Lindsay F September 10, 2012 at 7:54 pm

I love border free quilting!


Colleen Identicon Icon Colleen September 10, 2012 at 7:58 pm

I love to not put borders on a quilt. I like to extend the background


Elizabeth Johnson Identicon Icon Elizabeth Johnson September 10, 2012 at 8:32 pm

I have not made a quilt without borders, but I would like to after I have seen what Julie has done. Thank you!


Kelly Jackson Identicon Icon Kelly Jackson September 10, 2012 at 8:48 pm

Great interview! I laughed a few times and really enjoyed reading. Going Commando works out lovely for Julies patterns.



quiltzyx/sue Identicon Icon quiltzyx/sue September 10, 2012 at 9:30 pm

The only of my quilts that have gone commando are art quilts, so far anyway. You never know what I might do next however…


Rachelle Identicon Icon Rachelle September 10, 2012 at 9:50 pm

No Commando quilts yet, but I am planning one at the moment for my eldest son. I’m aiming at something modern that he won’t outgrow.


Kathryn S Identicon Icon Kathryn S September 10, 2012 at 10:44 pm

I haven’t gone borderless yet but love the look and plan to try it soon.


Jane Identicon Icon Jane September 11, 2012 at 1:12 am

So far, I haven’t finished a quilt with no borders – but there is one top lying around that still has no borders and I can’t find a color for a border that would satisfy me.

I guess since this great book is out now, that should encourage me to go commando for this one… we’ll see what happens. I guess quilting will have to wait until my longarm machine arrives somewhen in November anyway :) (that gives me more time to ponder, right?)

Thanks for the chance to win an ebook copy of this great source of inspiration!


Carla G Identicon Icon Carla G September 11, 2012 at 1:24 am

Yes, my first quilt that I’m working on is borderless. I guess I chose the pattern because it is less complicated for my first quilting project. Thanks for a chance to win this fabulous looking book! :)


Patsy Goodin Identicon Icon Patsy Goodin September 11, 2012 at 3:43 am

Can’t wait to get my hands on the book. My local shop is ordering for me today. Great job.


Joan Identicon Icon Joan September 11, 2012 at 4:27 am

I have gone borderless and loved it!
Thanks for the giveaway!


Lisa Marie Identicon Icon Lisa Marie September 11, 2012 at 5:09 am

I have made some quilts without borders. Sometimes I might plan to use a border but then the top looks finished without it, other times a border was never in the plan. Julie’s book looks great, thanks for the chance to win!


elsa Identicon Icon elsa September 11, 2012 at 5:54 am

I have done a quilt without a border! It really was by accident and in a class ~ it was a sew, cut it up and sew again kind of quilt and I knew when it was finished. It turned out really wonky ~ I didn’t square it up when it was done. I haven’t thought of doing another, but the quilts in this book look great!
Thanks for the giveaway!


Carla Esser Lake Identicon Icon Carla Esser Lake September 11, 2012 at 8:07 am

Sometimes I think “Commando” might be my middle name. I enjoy the creative process more than I enjoy reading anf following directions. Are the results ever perfect? Not really. But I have a lot of fun!


robin Identicon Icon robin September 11, 2012 at 8:40 am

I actually just finished a quilt without any borders. I honestly didn’t know I was breaking the rules until I saw Julie’s blog about her book, back when it first came out! I’d say I’m more apt to not do borders than I am.


Vivian Identicon Icon Vivian September 11, 2012 at 10:19 am

I think I accidentally go commando on a lot of my quilts. If I make a mistake I just roll with it instead of ripping out seams, it creates something different but I normally like it.


carolyn m Identicon Icon carolyn m September 11, 2012 at 12:10 pm

I just finished a borderless quilt and I love it! I see myself going commando more often.


Diann Cornell Identicon Icon Diann Cornell September 11, 2012 at 2:20 pm

I haven’t skipped the borders in any quilts completed to date, but I do have one in progress with no borders planned.


Janelle J Identicon Icon Janelle J September 11, 2012 at 2:24 pm

Yes! I used to think everything needed borders, but now I am re-examining that. I have started leaving them off and am happy with it. They are an easy way to make things bigger or show off a pretty fabric, but depending on the sort of scrappy quilt it works great without them too!


Ali M Identicon Icon Ali M September 11, 2012 at 2:33 pm

Hmm, well I decided to do a binding-less quilt last month, when I realized I cut the back too small, so it’s folded over under on both sides. Still getting up the nerve to baste it in the sewing machine, I feel way to inexperienced to wing it like that, but I have my fingers crossed that it will look good when I’m done!


judith looker Identicon Icon judith looker September 11, 2012 at 2:54 pm

I don’t believe I have because I learned to piece by hand and hand quilt many moons ago! I have always used a pattern which always called for a border. The old school of thought was to use the borders to create a frame or mat for your piecework, to make the quilt design pop. I have to admit, Julie quilts without borders have a fresh and new look to them which I like. I am delighted that the next generation of quilters is taking quilting in a new direction of their own making…forward!


Heather Identicon Icon Heather September 11, 2012 at 3:06 pm

Yes, I’ve gone “borderless” on a couple of quilts and I want to try it on more. Often how to make the border and what fabric to use is a real puzzle for me so Julie’s book would be ideal.


Pat Identicon Icon Pat September 11, 2012 at 3:54 pm

I am yet to be brave and bold enough to “go commando” on my quilts. I do however have a top done that I left without its outer border. It is hanging in the breeze waiting for me to finish the pieced backing … also borderless. My days of being safe and well bordered are numbered and I am about to toss my quilts to the wind and let them fly free. I feel unshackled … ;) Pat


Donna Baker Identicon Icon Donna Baker September 11, 2012 at 4:28 pm

great review & Q&A! I am only making my 3rd quilt at the moment. first & second actually had no borders, just hst on the first and I love it! my 2nd was a flannel rag quilt. thanks for the chance to win the Ebook!


Sue Identicon Icon Sue September 11, 2012 at 4:45 pm

I’ve just finished a baby quilt with no borders – it was fun!


Danette Identicon Icon Danette September 11, 2012 at 5:05 pm

I love these quilts and I’m soooo excited to purchase the book and go commando!


Boca Tammie Identicon Icon Boca Tammie September 11, 2012 at 6:11 pm

I have long considered myself a borderless quilter… so sure, I have definitely gone commando and I’m lovin’ every minute of it. Congrats on your book Julie!


Lana Elfstrom Identicon Icon Lana Elfstrom September 11, 2012 at 7:01 pm

I have “gone commando”! Mostly because I am new and kind of self taught and didn’t know I was supposed to add them to begin with. The same with sashing. When I saw other quilters using them and talking about them almost like they were required, I was like “uh-oh”! I am glad to see I don’t need to use them if I don’t want. Which usually I prefer not to.


Marcia Identicon Icon Marcia September 11, 2012 at 7:06 pm

I’m in the process of going borderless on my current project. This will be my first so I’m anxious to see the final product.


Brooke Identicon Icon Brooke September 11, 2012 at 8:10 pm

I’ve done one borderless quilt that I can think of off the top of my head. Eli’s Wheels from Moda Bake Shop. I love it. Time to do another borderless!


Elizabeth W. Identicon Icon Elizabeth W. September 11, 2012 at 10:45 pm

I haven’t skipped the borders yet! I saw the title of this book some time ago and have been waiting for it so I could learn more since I’m newer to quilting. Thanks for the chance!

Lwghosts at yahoo dot com


lynne s of oz Identicon Icon lynne s of oz September 11, 2012 at 10:53 pm

I’ve just gone commando with my most recently finished (almost finished – I’m sewing the binding down) quilt. The postage stamp design goes all the way to the edge, though the blue and white polka dot material is a quite obvious edging. It made things much easier as even if I had wanted to add borders around it, I don’t have the same white material I used on the piecing.
I use Julie’s binding tutorial to get the mitred corners all nice and then the start/end of the binding pretty too.
As for this measuring out from the centre thing – never heard of it. Then again, I’m self taught and don’t mind if a quilt is a bit wonky – if I did, I’d never finish a single one! They seem to sit ok, though they are not always square.


Chris H. Identicon Icon Chris H. September 12, 2012 at 5:01 am

I just finished a baby quilt last night that I wen t commando on.. I originally planned on borders but the vivid colors and pattern turned out so pretty that it didn’t need it.. Less work for me, I like that idea!


Phyllis Identicon Icon Phyllis September 12, 2012 at 6:17 am

It all depends upon the quilt and the pattern. Maybe it depends upon how I feel at the time. Another reason for adding binding – just making the quilt fit the intentional bed or horror of horrors – running out of fabric. Thank you for the opportunity.


Nichole Identicon Icon Nichole September 12, 2012 at 6:29 am

I love going commando – with my quilts, that is. I hate putting borders on and prefer the look of an edge-to-edge design. Thanks for the chance to win this awesome book!


Jenniffier Identicon Icon Jenniffier September 12, 2012 at 6:35 am

I prefer quilts with out borders. They just make me happy that way.


Thorn Identicon Icon Thorn September 12, 2012 at 7:16 am

I’m a beginning quilter and no border (or minimal border) has generally made more visual sense to me, though the quilt I’m currently working on will have a border. But to get to that bordering part I’d have to actually finish something, which is not happening any time soon as long as shiny new projects keep catching my eye!


Jess Identicon Icon Jess September 12, 2012 at 7:25 am

The idea of all that measuring and cutting/sewing long lengths of fabric gives me the heebie jeebies, much prefer it in smaller, more manageable sized pieces, all the way out to the edge with some awesome binding to set everything off. One of the criteria for picking a pattern for my first quilt was “no borders!” and I love it. I’ve chosen a solid black binding to frame my white & rainbow solids checkerboard quilt, based on Snapshots from one of Elizabeth Hartman’s books.


Marieke Identicon Icon Marieke September 12, 2012 at 8:19 am

I’ve gone borderless, and I like it. It looks a bit more modern to me in a lot of cases, and I find I’m more drawn to those patterns. I have also made quilts with borders (including one of Julie’s patterns, Carnival), or what’s essentially an extension of whatever neutral sashing that might have been between the blocks. The make up of the blocks may dictate more whether borders are called for or not (sashed blocks and a border make a bit more sense to me and blocks that are attached directly to each other seem to call for it less.)


usairdoll Identicon Icon usairdoll September 12, 2012 at 9:11 am

I have not gone borderless on any of my bigger quilts, only on some minis. Does that still count? hehe.

Thank you for a great giveaway and a chance to win. Such beautiful quilts!



Rachel Booth Identicon Icon Rachel Booth September 12, 2012 at 9:28 am

My first quilt (and only so far) is borderless and I love it!! I think quilts without borders are amazing!!! :)


vicki Identicon Icon vicki September 12, 2012 at 9:36 am

I love the look of borderless quilts and need to learn more binding techniques thanks for the opportunity


Linda Identicon Icon Linda September 12, 2012 at 9:40 am



Meredith F. Identicon Icon Meredith F. September 12, 2012 at 10:01 am

I need this book! I love the look of these borderless quilts! I have done both and borderless is sure quicker.


Sandy M Identicon Icon Sandy M September 12, 2012 at 10:09 am

I’ve only made one quilt without borders. It was nerve racking! LOL!


Dianne Mitzel Identicon Icon Dianne Mitzel September 12, 2012 at 10:34 am

I made a king sized drunkards path for my son 2 years ago. I left off the borders, it was perfect!! I do use borders to make the quilt larger at times. You save money on fabric and quilting when you skip the border!!!


marjorie Identicon Icon marjorie September 12, 2012 at 11:52 am

I sometimes use borders that are different sizes. Wider on the bottom, than the top, and narrower on the sides–Like framing a picture. Not a big fan of e-books–I like the feel of a book.


AlessandraLace Identicon Icon AlessandraLace September 12, 2012 at 12:53 pm

I love this book. hugs


LeAnne L Identicon Icon LeAnne L September 12, 2012 at 1:24 pm

All of my quilts so far have had borders on them.


KatieQ Identicon Icon KatieQ September 12, 2012 at 1:27 pm

I have made quilts without borders and enjoyed the process as well as the look. I think it’s great to have the option to think inside as well as outside the box or border as the case may be.


Jo Identicon Icon Jo September 12, 2012 at 2:03 pm

I haven’t gone commando yet, but the pictures in this book make it seem very appealing! :)


Joan PR Identicon Icon Joan PR September 12, 2012 at 2:23 pm

I’ve never gone “commando” because it felt too naughty! But Julie’s book gives me the inspiration to free myself of quilting conventions and go just for it! :)


Patti Identicon Icon Patti September 12, 2012 at 2:29 pm

Umm borderless??? Does this mean I have to actually finish one??? Guess it does, but so far I haven’t sorry but I am new to this even though I’m older than, well almost anyone I know in the quilting world so far. But I would really love this book and would treasure it and finish something.


Patricia Identicon Icon Patricia September 12, 2012 at 3:04 pm

I have just made Julie’s ‘Ballerina” pattern and I am quilting it now. The pattern is quick to do and the instructions are very clear.


Beverly Lawler Identicon Icon Beverly Lawler September 12, 2012 at 3:06 pm

Yes I have made quilts without borders and love it! One less thing to do and then onto another project!


carol T Identicon Icon carol T September 12, 2012 at 3:22 pm

I have gone Commando in most of the quilts I have made. I guess I am not a border person.


Barbara Rochlin Identicon Icon Barbara Rochlin September 12, 2012 at 3:25 pm

We are ALL quilters! I want to try All kinds of quilts. Don’t want to be pigeonholed into one type.


Amanda Identicon Icon Amanda September 12, 2012 at 3:27 pm

I have made a few quilts that were “commando”. I do really like it when the blocks seem to spill off the edge of a design. It’s also a good way to experiment with larger scale designs.


Anne Identicon Icon Anne September 12, 2012 at 3:47 pm

I have not had the freedom of going commando but this is so exciting! We can get ‘er done quicker!


Deb Identicon Icon Deb September 12, 2012 at 3:48 pm

Sometimes I do borders, sometimes I don’t – it all depends.


Joan Kruse Identicon Icon Joan Kruse September 12, 2012 at 3:52 pm

I have put borders on many of my quilts but I have also gone commando. I just designed one that just didn’t need a border, the design spoke for itself.


Patsy Booher Identicon Icon Patsy Booher September 12, 2012 at 4:05 pm

I have not yet gone “commando.” I plan on giving it a try.

Great book…


Flo Burton Identicon Icon Flo Burton September 12, 2012 at 4:10 pm

My two quilts I have made without borders and just love them. I also use the leftover fabric for a scrappy binding!


Lisa in Texas Identicon Icon Lisa in Texas September 12, 2012 at 4:10 pm

Hi…I make borderless quilts when I get lazy/anxious to finish a top…call me lazy but I do like the look! Lisa in Texas


Nancy Identicon Icon Nancy September 12, 2012 at 4:11 pm

I have not made a quilt without borders yet…. I love the look of no borders… will be trying one soon.
thanks.. nancy


Patty Identicon Icon Patty September 12, 2012 at 4:15 pm

I have gone commando but not often.


VickiT Identicon Icon VickiT September 12, 2012 at 4:15 pm

The first few quilts I made were either baby quilts or wall hangings and none of those had borders, so yep, I’ve gone commando a few times now. I’m so anxious to get a copy of Julie’s book because I don’t have any doubt it will be fabulous. I love her style in writing of her patterns or tutorials. They are always easily understood and she’s very quick to reply if I have any question no matter what it might be. I’m super thrilled for her with this book and her new ruler too.


Rebecca Identicon Icon Rebecca September 12, 2012 at 5:38 pm

I’ve definitely gone commando with my quilts a lot lately. I think I only use borders now if my quilt ends up too small and I need to add size!


Kathy MacKie Identicon Icon Kathy MacKie September 12, 2012 at 5:52 pm

Haven’t been that brave yet, but there is always hope.


MarciaW Identicon Icon MarciaW September 12, 2012 at 6:38 pm

Yes, I went commando on a string quilt and dollie quilts, and it looked just fine. I would like to learn how Julie plans for this with an ebook win!


Jen B Identicon Icon Jen B September 12, 2012 at 6:42 pm

Um, still working on finishing my first quilt, but when it’s done it won’t have borders.


Janet Best Identicon Icon Janet Best September 12, 2012 at 6:51 pm

Yes, I have made borderless quilts before, and I liked them! I think there sometimes is pressure to add borders to quilts because you’re “supposed to” but I don’t always agree. I have seen quilts that I thought should have stopped before borders were added. I guess it’s just a personal choice. I do know that I have yet to see a pattern of Julie’s that I have not loved! Thanks for the giveaway!


Beth T. Identicon Icon Beth T. September 12, 2012 at 11:39 pm

Am I the only one who immediately thinks of Joey Tribiani when you use the phrase “go commando”?

While I love borders as a place to showcase beautiful fabric in a big way, I have started to really evaluate my quilts to see if they need a border, and if the border needs to be even or could it be on two adjacent sides or consist of flying geese, or be unexpected in some way. Is that what you were asking?


Cindy Wendt Identicon Icon Cindy Wendt September 13, 2012 at 12:47 am

Yes, Gone Commando, Disappearing 9 Patch.
Didn’t need borders for size and looked great without, actually made 5 with all the same fabrics for a few of the males in the family. Large blocks, they had a great scrappy look to them.
Good luck Julie and well done.
Thanks for the give away.


Kris Identicon Icon Kris September 13, 2012 at 4:42 am

I usually use borders because I adore big prints but I have often “left them off” as well especially for kids/small quilts.


Jocelyn Identicon Icon Jocelyn September 13, 2012 at 5:00 am

I usually add borders to my quilts, but I love how the borderless attracts your eye to the quilt itself. I’m on a mission to “go Comando” on my new quilt!


Ann Identicon Icon Ann September 13, 2012 at 7:28 am

YES! If I could go commando all the time I would. I anxiously awaited the publication of Julie’s book for this very reason. I’ve left many a pieced top sitting for awhile w/0 the borders because I just don’t enjoy working w/ those long strips of fabric. I would rather make a pieced border any day!


Keithena Identicon Icon Keithena September 13, 2012 at 8:05 am

I am not a commando kinda girl. But, I have kicked my commando loving man out of bed. And he has ended up on the couch , commando with one of my quilts. And I enjoyed that very much. {wink,wink}


Sew Create It - Jane Identicon Icon Sew Create It - Jane September 13, 2012 at 2:01 pm

I don’t think I’ve ever made a border free quilt, but after seeing a few pictures I might just try it with one I have in the planning stages.


Celeste Johnson Identicon Icon Celeste Johnson September 13, 2012 at 3:05 pm

I love the no border look. I’ve been quilting for years and am still learning and loving all the new ideas from the new quilters. Yay, no need for borders. Freedom!


Barb in MI Identicon Icon Barb in MI September 14, 2012 at 7:10 am

Yes, I have gone border-less with quite a few quilts – and some were Scott’s patterns. I love it because often my quilt tops get hung up at the broder stage, so what better approach than no borders and therefore no UFO… Thanks for a chance!


Lynnet H. Identicon Icon Lynnet H. September 14, 2012 at 11:26 am

I’ve not made a border free quilt before and honestly I’ve not thought about doing one until now! I’ve got several quilts I need to do by the end of this year and One of them will HAVE to be borderless! I can’t wait to get my hands on this book!


Gidget Identicon Icon Gidget September 14, 2012 at 12:54 pm

I have definately gone comando before…. when finishing a quilt.


Tash Identicon Icon Tash September 14, 2012 at 9:16 pm

I try to go commando, but I find that I like to have a border so that I can square up – being picky is not my character, but it is when I am quilting. I would love to go borderless.. thanks for the chance to win!


Simone de Klerk Identicon Icon Simone de Klerk September 17, 2012 at 2:08 am

I used to make my quilts without borders, when I started making quilts. But somehow lost doing this. I think I should try it again (o: Love the look of it and all the attention that goes to the blocks.


Gina.S Identicon Icon Gina.S September 17, 2012 at 9:01 am

I like them without boarders! I like the look of just the blocks and add the pop with the binding.


Diana Identicon Icon Diana September 17, 2012 at 9:55 am

I have gone “commando” on many quilts, sometimes it just looks better. Thanks for the giveaway.


Erin Identicon Icon Erin September 17, 2012 at 11:22 am

I have never made a quilt without and border. The border has always been my buffer to make the quilt the exact size I want it.


Margaret R Identicon Icon Margaret R September 17, 2012 at 1:45 pm

I have only done baby quilts without borders. Usually because I do the sew and flip method of finishing so I don’t have to put on a binding.


Nancy Identicon Icon Nancy September 17, 2012 at 2:27 pm

Yes, I have. And what I liked was how the scrappiness of the quilt did all the work to make it a success. It practically invented itself.


jmniffer Identicon Icon jmniffer September 17, 2012 at 6:41 pm

I haven’t made a border free quilt; but it is tempting, especially since so often the borders are often distracting or much larger I like. Thanks for the chance at your giveaway.


Teresa Green Identicon Icon Teresa Green September 17, 2012 at 7:49 pm

I have never gone commando with no borders – I have broken other rules but what you don’t know won’t hurt you. I love Julies new book and would love to learn how to go Commando….Pick me…….pick me,,,,,,,…….


Jill Identicon Icon Jill September 18, 2012 at 9:14 am

Yes I have made quilts without borders. I love them. I’m working on one right now for a baby. I also think they look more modern without the borders.


Sandra Davidson Identicon Icon Sandra Davidson September 18, 2012 at 10:19 am

Love Julie and love the look of her new book, never gone “commando” on quilt but it would be fun so I will have to try it.


Wanda Identicon Icon Wanda September 19, 2012 at 8:24 am

I”m about half and half, some need borders to be as big as I want without making more blocks. Some are finished without borders and I think the binding choice is an integral part of the design.


Pat V. Identicon Icon Pat V. September 19, 2012 at 1:44 pm

I’m just finishing up a baby quilt with no borders. It just didn’t need anything more!


Evelyn Identicon Icon Evelyn September 19, 2012 at 7:13 pm

Nearly all of my quilts go commando — they look better without any borders to draw attention away from my designs. The binding is the only “border” they get.


Judi Identicon Icon Judi September 20, 2012 at 6:12 am

LOL. I can’t read “gone commando” without chuckling. The answer is yes. I prefer making quilts border free.


Shawn Identicon Icon Shawn September 20, 2012 at 6:42 am

Yes have gone commando with more than one of my quilts.


Karyn Identicon Icon Karyn September 20, 2012 at 11:29 am

Not yet, but I’d love to try one! Thank you!


Toni Anne Potter Identicon Icon Toni Anne Potter September 21, 2012 at 8:00 am

I’ve only “Gone Commando” 1 time, on my son’s very large Log Cabin baby quilt, it just looked finished. I love the idea of going borderless, I’ve never thought of it before. Only since Julies book and Blog Hop did I even realize my son’s quilt was borderless. ;-> Toni Anne


MoeWest Identicon Icon MoeWest September 22, 2012 at 10:20 am

About half of my quilts were made without borders. Julie’s book looks great!


Debi Identicon Icon Debi September 23, 2012 at 6:04 am

I have never gone commando. Just have not given it a thought, but after reading this and seeing the quilt examples I am going to give it a try!


Jenelle Boxberger Identicon Icon Jenelle Boxberger September 24, 2012 at 10:33 am

I have made lap quilts without borders. Thanks


Laurie Identicon Icon Laurie September 27, 2012 at 10:10 pm

yes, one time I didn’t do any borders.


Sheri Identicon Icon Sheri October 2, 2012 at 7:32 pm

I think my borderless quilts are more than the ones with borders. I think mostly, I’m in a hurry and lazy. I’m more of a “quilt-in-a-day” gal. I gotta’ finish it before I run out of steam or distracted by the next project or… my work at home. You know, the family, the house, homeschooling… There are things more important than sewing. I think though that I would like to make a border quilt around a fun motif! That should be quick and simple!


Nancy Stone Identicon Icon Nancy Stone October 4, 2012 at 1:03 pm

I always put borders on my quilt.


Beth in TN Identicon Icon Beth in TN October 8, 2012 at 8:51 am

Yes, I skip the borders OFTEN! But then I will make my binding a little wider to act *like* a border.


Samantha Identicon Icon Samantha October 8, 2012 at 9:48 am

I have only made a few quilts and have only put a border on one! Thanks for the chance to win :)


Lyn Identicon Icon Lyn October 9, 2012 at 4:00 pm

Probably not…I tend to be more traditional…the only recent quilt I can think of that didn’t have borders was a sashiko wallhanging. But I’d consider it….


Karen D. Identicon Icon Karen D. October 9, 2012 at 4:28 pm

No borders, please. But… make those bindings pop!


TX JennyWren Identicon Icon TX JennyWren October 9, 2012 at 7:20 pm



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