June 21, 2012

Stain-proof, self-binding table runner - Tutorial

table runners
Today my middle name is 'problem-solver'! I am so excited! My family loves having my quilts all around the house, but they are sometimes afraid to handle them at the dinner table. I have beautiful table quilts and runners which are confined to the dining room as the kitchen table is disaster prone...

This morning I tackled this challenge and created a table runner that is pretty, quilted, and stain proof, using vinyl fabric from Moda and Riley Blake Designs, originally purchased for a bag.

It was fast - under 2 hours from conception to completion! Now, the inevitable spills will not stop me from displaying my work and adorning my kitchen.

Here is what you will need:

1/2 yard vinyl fabric for top
1/2 yard vinyl fabric for backing
1/2 yard X length of top fabric: Warm and Natural batting
Walking foot
Quilting thread
Binding clips
Rotary cutter
Cutting mat

Strawberries fabric from Moda, polka dots from Riley Blake. 1/2 of each. Trim the top fabric so that it is one inch narrower than the bottom fabric. In my case, the strawberries fabric was cut to measure 17" wide and the backing fabric measured 18" wide.
With right sides together, stitch down one long side (Seam allowance: about 1/2"). Do not worry about salvages - they will be trimmed soon. Using a walking foot helps the fabrics move smoothly, although you will need to use your right hand to pull the fabrics gently as they are stitched.

Stitch all the down that side.
Now sew down the other long side. Use paper clips to hold fabrics together, as pins will leave holes.
Since fabrics have different widths, once you sew them you will notice this difference. Not to worry. That is how this table runner will be self-binding!
Trim salvage off both ends using rotary cutter.
Flip this long tube inside out. It is looking pretty already!!!
Cut batting one inch narrower than the tube.
Slip it inside the tube and trim it shorter than tube by one inch.
Turn backing inside and over the batting, then fold top fabric and clip it, making sure the bottom fabric shows.
Do the same on the other end, and clip all around the table runner, so that the backing fabric shows on top (about 1/4 inch all around). That is your binding.
Top stitch all around. I found it was better to roll the runner and unroll it as I stitched it, as it did not get stuck on the extension table. Watch how I gently pull the runner to help move it under the walking foot.
I rolled the part that was stitched already, and the whole project was very easy to manage.
Last step: quilting. I used simple straight lines with the walking foot, holding the runner in the same manner as when I top stitched it.
Final measurements: 17" wide X 40" long.
I am one happy girl! Next runner will be finished very soon, before I am tempted to use the vinyl fabrics to make yet another bag!!! What do you think? Super easy, huh?


  1. Wonderful tutorial and what a great idea to use vinyl fabric! Thanks for sharing!
    Quilting at the River Linky Party Tuesday

  2. Great idea to use vinyl, a good way to keep your lovely fabric clean!

  3. Really cute runner and perfect for linking up to Tuesday at the {summer} Table, if you want! Very fun & nice tutorial.

  4. What a great idea and fun tutorial!

  5. This is a clever idea. They are making such cute vinyls and oilcloths right now, that I'll have to try it.

  6. That's a pretty runner and thanks for sharing a wonderful tutorial!

  7. Would this work with just cotton fabric instead of the vinyl?


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