Yesterday, I published “The Color Purple” Tablescape. Included in the post were pictures of what I called a plate runner.
Today, I’m providing a tutorial for these quick runners, quick because you only need a couple for your table, rather than several place mats.
You could use two table runners if you would like, purchased or home-made. These instructions are for any length you need for your table. The ends could be finished off with a nice fringe or trim of some sort. As I say often, just have fun with it.
I feel I sort of cheated with these, because when I made my window treatments, I cut 14″ strips from the panels that was not needed due to a large repeat in the print. That means I already had full widths cut to the right measurements. A 54″ width was the perfect measurement to go under three plates, so I was lucky on this one. And, 14″ turned out to be the perfect depth for my table.
Step One: Cutting
If you’re starting from scratch, cut 14″ across a 54″ width of decorator fabric. Cut a 13-1/2″ strip of lining fabric (or an old sheet, y’all.), also a full width of 54″.
If you need a longer strip, cut additional strips and seam them together, matching pattern if possible.
Step Two: Sewing Edges (Or Hem Taping)
Lay right sides together and stitch the full 54″ width together along the top edge, and then the bottom edge. If you’re using hem tape, attach the hem tape along both edges.
Since the lining fabric is more narrow, you will reposition the fabric a little for your second seam (or strip of tape). This process of making the back side slightly smaller helps tremendously in getting the top side to hide the lining. Finish the edges with zig-zag stitches if you’re not using a serger or hem tape.
Turn your fabric right side out.
Step Three: Pressing (THE Most Important Part)
OK, PAM (Painter Artist Mom), this is a part where you’ll want to put your hands over your ears (eyes, rather), because the following information is really going to disappoint you.
For years, I tried to skimp on this step. I know!
How could I, right? And, then one day…
I took the time to press my piece really well. I discovered, just as I’d been told a thousand times, it actually makes all the rest much easier. After pressing the seam open, it folds much easier to make a proper edge.
Step Three: Final Stitching (Or Hem Taping)
I’ll admit, I’m a learn-it-the-hard-way kind of queen. PAM could tell you it’s true, because she tried to break me of my hard-headed ways for soooo long!
Step Four: Final Pressing
Sometimes you have to let go…and let people stumble…and fall…and get
furious upset because their life sewing piece doesn’t look as pretty as they thought it should.
OK, PAM, you can open your ears (and eyes) now.
Then, one day, they wake up to the truth…to live happily ever after. And you don’t have to scold them any more, ever again.
Because they know.
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