Christmas Tree Table Runner Sew Along Day 3

Welcome to day 3 of our Christmas Tree Table Runner Sew Along.

If you’ve missed it so far here are some handy links:

Today we are going to add the end pieces and tree trunks.  Then on day four, we will tackle quilting and binding.

By now you should have:

  • the main tree shapes all sewn together, with sashing strips in between the shapes.
  • the binding strips sewn together and put to one side for later.
  • a minimum of one 6.4cm (2.5″) square put to one side for each tree in your runner (for a standard runner you should have a minimum of 8 squares).

Part 3…

Trim the short sides of your table runner back straight (you will be cutting off the excess filler strip at each end).

Take your rectangle of filler fabric 20cm x 27cm long (8” x 11”).  Looking at the back of your fabric, place the template on top – it is really important that you are looking at the back of the fabric and that the template is on top with the writing on the template facing you.  Trace your template, then turn it around so it fits in the rest of the fabric, and trace around it a second time.

Cut the fabric pieces out and place one at each end of the runner to ‘square off’ the table runner.

Flip the left end piece over, on top of the table runner, the long diagonal edges should be lined up, you will find that a small nib of fabric sticks out over the bottom edge of the runner (see image below) this is correct.

Sew the fabrics together, iron the seam out flat.

Repeat these steps at the other end of the table runner.

Now is a great time to square everything off.

If you are new to quilting, this is the process of cutting the table runner straight on each side.  Make sure the corners are right angles and trim each side back straight.

Now we will move onto the tree trunks.  Start by cutting filler strips into the following sizes:

  • 6 x 21.2cm
    (If you have made a longer table runner you will need 2 more of these strips for every 2 extra
  • 2 x 22cm
  • 2 x 10cm

You will also need the 6.4cm (2.5”) squares you put to one side earlier.

Lay your tree trunks out in your preferred design, along the top and bottom of the table runner, and insert 21.2cm filler pieces between them.  At the wider ends add 22cm pieces, and at the short ends place your 10cm pieces.

Sew the trunk pieces to the filler pieces, creating two rows of fabric, one above the main body of the table runner, and one below.

TIP: Once you have sewn a few strips and trunks together, place your new strip back in your design and check the trunks are landing centrally at the bottom of the trees.  If you have had to trim your trees back harder than me, or if your seam allowance is less or more than 6mm (1/2″), you may find the trunks are not central – better to find out now and adjust your strip lengths, than wait until you have sewn all the pieces together!

Now you are going to sew your new strips to the main part of the table runner.  The trick is to line the middle of the tree trunks up with the middle of the trees.  Fold the left edge of the body of the runner over, so that the tip of the first tree is on the fold, then press.  Then fold the left edge of the tree trunk strip over, so that the two sides of the first trunk are on top of each other (and the trunk is in half) – press this fold also.

Unfold the two fabric strips and then place the trunk strip on top of the main tree strip, right sides facing each other, with the two creases and raw edges lined up.  Stick a pin in the crease line.  Now line the middle of the rest of the tree trunks up with the middle of each tree.  You can do this by eye, using a quilting ruler, or by creasing the mid points of all the remaining tree trucks and trees and lining them up as before – pin into place.

Add any further pins necessary in-between the tree trunks and then sew the trunks into place.

Iron the seam allowance out flat and then repeat the process on the other side.

Square off the ends (trim away any excess tree trunk strip fabric back in line with the rest of the table runner).

The top of your table runner is finished!  Tomorrow we will start quilting 🙂


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