Friday, August 18, 2017

Table Runners

When I first got my embroidery machine, I started playing with it and learning how to use it right away. I did some smaller in-the-hoop projects and gift items for the first couple of weeks. After that, I decided I wanted to try out something a little bigger- something that would require me to not only use the embroidery features of my machine but to sew with it as well. I decided to make a fall table runner for our house. I had a pack of fall print fat quarters that I wanted to use and I found the Freeform table runner pattern from Sweet Pea. The design includes 4 different blocks (each in 3 different sizes) that are made in the embroidery hoop and then joined together with the sewing machine. I chose to make two each of 3 different blocks in the 7x12 hoop size. The instructions were easy to follow and the blocks stitched out nicely. Sewing them together was easy enough. The big challenge for me was adding the binding. My sewing skills are lacking and even sewing a straight line can be a challenge. Haha. It didn’t turn out perfect, but I finished my table runner and enjoy having a homemade touch to decorate our house in the fall.
My First Table Runner
This past spring, I decided to make another table runner. We have an antique chest in one of our guest rooms and I’ve always been looking for something to put on the top to protect it. I’ve never found anything in a size and style that I liked so I thought it would be the perfect project to make my own table runner. Again, I turned to Sweet Pea and found their chevron quilt block. Like the previous table runner, the design comes in multiple sizes and the blocks are made in the hoop and joined together with the sewing machine. For my table runner I used the 5”x5” quilt blocks. I chose to do each block in blue and white fabrics- half the blocks with dark blue and half with a lighter blue. The blocks stitch up really quickly which was good since I needed 40 of them. One of the things that I love about this design is that there are so many different ways you can arrange the blocks to get different looks. Here are some of the different layouts I played with.
Different Layouts for the Chevron Blocks
Ultimately, I ended up doing them in a pinwheel layout. Sewing them together challenged me a little more than the previous table runner since there where so many more blocks to sew together and more seams to line up, but overall it wasn’t too bad. I chose to do the binding and backing in the lighter blue fabric. Again, not perfect, but better than the first table runner..so at least I’m learning. :-) 
Chevron Block Table Runner
I had some extra fabric and decided to make a pillow for the bed to match the table runner. Same idea as the table runner, but I only made 4 blocks. I sewed the blocks together and then used directions from another pillow I made (and will share in a future blog post) for adding the edges, backing, lining and even a zipper on the back.
Chevron Block Pillow
I never imagined I'd be able to make a table runner, but I've now completed two and have ideas for more.  With each one I hope to improve my skills and continue to learn. It's "sew" much fun!

Go out and try something new today...and enjoy!

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