French In A Bind?
When I first met Ruth, an entire world of crafts appeared before my eyes. I thought that people bought all Raggedy Ann & Andy dolls in a store. I didn't think people actually made Raggedy Ann & Andy dolls - Ruth did. She even did cross-stitch, counted, even.
So I learned how to cross-stitch. And, believe me, that's not something that every man gets into. But, I did.
I cross-stitched teddy bears on sweatshirts using waste canvas for my kids and my sister. I discovered that all you had to do in an airplane was to cross-stitch and every stewardess would stop and talk to you! [If only I had known the secret before I got married! But, now they'd throw you in jail for carrying cross-stitch needles on the plane!]
So, there I was cross-stitching my head off with Ruth. All of her crosses cross the same way. When a hole has to be used twice - well, you can't even tell that she used it twice. And, she did all that while watching TV, too!
So, here I am stitching away staring at my work with great effort so that it looks nice [and it did]. Ruth looks over and said "This is supposed to be relaxing."
You got to be kidding me! How can you relax on 20 count, counted cross-stitch?! After I finished those six sweatshirts, I packed away my cross-stitch needles for good.
And, then I went on to the next manly thing: quilting!
Just like cross-stitching, everything I know, I learned from Ruth. Even things like a standard binding is 2 1/2" and is referred to as a "French Binding." Imagine my surprise when quilters came in for longarming and wanted to do 2 3/8" binding! Then, they wanted "back-to-front." Then, they wanted "front-to-back." Then, they wanted five inches! Phew! My head was spinning!
You might ask "Rick, why are you writing this?"
Options on binding can affect the longarmer and the techniques that they use.
Many edge-to-edge projects go over the edge of the top to assure that entire patterns are used. If you use "back-to-front" or "front-to-back" you most likely don't want stitching on the part that is folded over. This means that the longarmer cannot stitch over the edge and, in fact, must stop well within the border to maximize the appearance.
If you are going to use non-standard binding techniques, or do not want your edge-to-edge stitching to go off the edge of the top, then inform your longarmer at the beginning of the check-in process. It effects the techniques used and can limit the range of stitching designs that can be employed.