Valentine Table Runner

In the interest of full disclosure, this project is the most time intensive of the week.  I started mine a week or so ago and have worked on different steps up until I finished the binding last night.  On the plus side, you can make it reversible and have a table runner for two holidays and you can think of it as a mini quilt and try out some new techniques without committing to a large size.

I am not actually going to give you full directions to make a quilt, as I am not an authority on the subject and there are plenty of people out there in blogland who are, so I'll reference some of their links.

Fabric Scraps, a least 10" in one direction
1/2 yard of fabric for borders (I used Essex Linen)
1//4 yard fabric for binding (I used Kona cotton in Pomegranate)
1 yard fabric for backing (I used Alexander Henry's Farmdale Orchard in Multi)
batting measuring approx. 52" x 16"
coordinating thread

Step 1:  Cut your fabric scraps to measure 10" wide by anywhere from 1-3" long.  Most of mine measure 10" x 2.5" and I used 30 to get the length of runner I wanted. Line them up in an arrangement pleasing to you, stack them up and start sewing them together (1/4" seam) until you have the size you want.  I usually press with all of the seams going to one side, but that is your preference.

Step 2: Square up your rectangle to make sure it is even.  Once you have done that, cut two pieces from your border fabric measuring 4" by length of your pieced strips.  Sew to either side with a 1/4" seam.  Press open, make sure it is even again, trim a little, if needed.  Cut 2 more strips from the border fabric 5" long by the width of your runner.  Sew one on the top & one on the bottom with 1/4" and press.  Your table runner top is now finished!

Step 3:  Now you need to prepare a backing in the same size as your finished front. Since you probably ended up with a runner about 52" long you will need to piece that yard of fabric for the backing - possibly cutting two 16" x 26.5" pieces and sewing them together.  I used this Farmdale Apple print (can I gush for a sec, love it!  Didn't get the farmdale fuss until it was in my possession & now I'm a big fan.  Plus it is the softest cotton ever!), which was directional. So I added a strip of my border fabric (the essex linen) to the center so the apples are facing the right way from both sides of the table.

Step 4:  Baste your quilt. Fat Quarterly has some great tutorials on making your quilt sandwich and basting it, quilting it & binding it.  Please reference those for more information on those steps.

I had read somewhere recently that you can serge the edges of your quilt to make it easier to quilt and bind - everything all tucked in, nice and straight & even.  Well, my big complaint is that it kind of curls the edges.  I am glad I tried it on a small project, I don't think I would do it again!

Step 5:  Once your quilt sandwich is ready, you can quilt it any way you like.  By hand, by machine with straight stitches or with free motion like I did.  I am relatively new to free motion & I thought this would be good practice to see if someday I could do an entire quilt.  The verdict is I need more practice, but it is such a soothing, relaxing thing to do once you're in your groove, so I just loved doing it! Oh, and I use these little batt scooters instead of gloves, from a class I took with Paula Reid.  I just did one loopy line that went back and forth across the runner.

Step 6: 
Binding.  I auditioned some solids from Kona with the help of my reference card.  This is one of my best purchases ever.  It has swatches of all their color offerings, so you know exactly what to order (especially helpful since my local quilt shop does not carry solids - I know!).

I ordered some Kona Pomegranate and cut the fabric into 1.75" strips and used my bias tape maker to make the tape.  Since I have squared corners, I use a method similar to this to bind.  There is no need to cut the fabric on the bias, which saves a lot of fabric.  I used 4 strips the length of fabric with a little leftover.

After about 75 minutes of watching tv/hand sewing the binding down my table runner is finished!

See, the curly edges are kind of driving me crazy.  I ironed.  A lot. ugh!  But I love those apples! Hope I can find some more of that fabric by fall to make some matching napkins.

Now I am kind of obsessed with this project - I want to see if I can find pink & red felt in time to make it for February 14th!

Oh, and I'll leave you with a few pictures of my boys hiding in my couch when I said it was nap time:


  1. That's really really cute! I'll be linking in tomorrow's Inspired Homemaking. Just let me know if that's not okay :)


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