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Making Scrap Piano Keys Border – Fast!!

2010 September 4
by bethanyquilt

When I get to the border of a scrap/donation quilt, I often find I don’t have enough of any particular fabric for the border, so I make one from my “random width scrap strips” box. It’s always full!!

I pull fabrics that I’d like to use and then sew them together, first in groups of twos, then adding it all together, trying to roughly order them by size until I get something that looks like this. I press as I go, seams to one side (they don’t end up all facing the same way, but that’s OK).Then I carefully fold it, trying to keep the seams straight in all the layers until I can get it under my 4 1/2″ wide ruler.

Then I trim the left edge (and check to see that it’s a clean cut through all the layers, with no “short strips” hiding underneath) and then cut 4 1/2″ strips. The end usually has some odd short and long parts but these are usable too.Rip the short parts off and keep the full 4 1/2″ pieces.You can use these to join some of your other pieces, or if you think the strips are too similar, you can cut a strip and insert the short piece.I usually join all the parts into one long strip and then separate it into the lengths I need.Fast and good!!! This was pieced (along with a couple strips of a blue fabric) into border units and was added to a crazy quilt scrap quilt today. I find that if I use the Piano Keys border all around it gets too chaotic, but if I piece it into another fabric, it doesn’t overwhelm the quilt. It’s pretty scrappy already. So why do I still have so many scraps???!!!

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