DIY Christmas Table Runner Pattern

Christmas fabric and notions laying on a table

Stacy Fisher

Overview
  • Total Time: 8 hrs
  • Skill Level: Intermediate

This DIY Christmas table runner pattern is the perfect way to decorate for the holidays without having to commit yourself to making a whole quilt. This pattern only uses simple half-square triangle blocks, making it a great choice for beginners. Although this pattern uses holiday fabric, you could use any fabric you'd like. Why not make one for every holiday of the year?

Size / Finished Measurements

Width: 21 inches

Length: 39 inches

To make the runner longer or wider, add more blocks or add a border.

Notes

The project is made with 5 inch squares of fabric from charm packs, 5-inch square fabric precuts. Instructions are also given for cutting squares from yardage.

What You'll Need

Equipment / Tools

  • Rotary cutter and mat
  • Quilting ruler
  • Marking pen
  • Sewing pins
  • Sewing machine, ready to stitch
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Safety pins or basting spray

Materials

  • 1 yard Christmas fabric (or charm pack of Christmas fabric)
  • 1 yard white fabric (or charm pack of white fabric)
  • 1 1/4 yard fabric for backing
  • 1 1/2 yard fabric for binding

Instructions

  1. Cut Squares for Table Runner Top

    I'm using charm packs for this table runner. These are 5-inch square fabric precuts. These are great because a) they are already cut, and b) you get a whole range of fabric patterns in them. You'll want to select 25 of these charm squares if you're using them. You'll have a few left; put them in your scrap bag for another project.

    It's easy to use yardage instead to make this Christmas table runner; you'll just need to do a little bit of cutting to make 5 inch squares.

    • Cut 25 5-inch squares from Christmas fabric.
    • Cut 25 5-inch squares from white fabric.
    Christmas fabric and cut fabric laying on a table
    Stacy Fisher
  2. Cut Backing, Batting, Binding

    Prepare your backing, batting and binding.

    • Cut your backing fabric into a 25-inch x 45-inch rectangle.
    • Cut your batting into a 25-inch x 45-inch rectangle. A craft size package of batting works perfectly for this or you can cut down a larger size. 
    • Cut your binding fabric 2-1/4 inches wide x width of fabric (WOF). You should have 4 strips.

    Set aside.

  3. Make Half Square Triangles

    Each of your half square triangles (HSTs) is made with one square of Christmas fabric and one square of white fabric. The two resulting HSTs are composed of a triangle of each fabric. To make your half square triangles (HSTs), follow these steps:

    1. Place a square of Christmas fabric and a square of white fabric right sides together.
    2. Draw a diagonal line from one corner to the other corner with a marking pen. Pin if desired.
    3. Sew a 1/4-inch seam on either side of the line.
    4. Being careful not to cut your stitching on either side, cut on the diagonal line you drew earlier.

    Use your iron to carefully set your seams and press the seams towards the Christmas fabric.

    Cutting fabric to make half square triangles
    Stacy Fisher
  4. Trim Half Square Triangles

    Use your quilting ruler to trim your half square triangles to 4-1/2 inches. Trimming gets rid of the "dogleg" created by seaming and ensures that all your blocks are the same and will sew together nicely. 

    Repeat these directions with the rest of your squares. You'll have 50 half square triangle blocks when you're finished. 

    A trimmed up half square triangle
    Stacy Fisher
  5. Arrange Squares in Herringbone Pattern

    Lay your half square triangles out in a herringbone design in five rows of ten blocks. If you've used different patterns of Christmas fabric, switch around your squares until you like their arrangement. Take a photo so you can refer to it while you're getting everything sewn together.

    Laying out half square triangles to form a herringbone pattern
    Stacy Fisher
  6. Sew Blocks Into Rows

    Place the first block right sides together with the second block of a row. Sew a 1/4" seam to join them. Keep joining blocks until you have an entire row sewn together.

    Tip

    Use whatever method you prefer to join blocks in rows to minimize small errors of joining. You can sew the blocks together in pairs first, then join the pairs. Or join them in two groups of five, then join the groups.

    After you've finished one row, sew the rest of the rows.

    Press your blocks to the right side for the first row, left side for the second row, and so on, alternating the direction in which your seams are pressed.

    Sewing together the first block with the second block
    Stacy Fisher
  7. Sew Rows Together

    Make sure your rows are still in order as they were in your reference photo. 

    Flip the first row down on the second row, placing right sides together. If you alternated the way you pressed the seams in each row, it should be easy to nest the rows together. Pin the rows and sew a 1/4-inch seam to join them. Press the seam between the rows open. 

    Continue sewing rows together, consulting reference photo, until you have the top of the table runner complete.

    Using the sewing machine to sew together rows
    Stacy Fisher
  8. Make Quilt Sandwich

    Time to get all the layers of Christmas table runner together by making a quilt sandwich. If you are spray basting, follow instructions for using the adhesive before making the sandwich.

    • To do this, lay your backing fabric right side down followed by your batting, making sure that everything stays smooth while you're doing this. Lay our completed table runner wrong side down on top, again making sure that everything is smooth and there are no wrinkles. Your batting and backing will be larger than your table runner top at this point. 

    Baste the layers together using pins or press to secure, if using adhesive.

    Pin basting the table runner
    Stacy Fisher
  9. Quilt

    Quilt your table runner with your sewing machine or by hand. You can choose any design you like. I chose to emphasize the herringbone pattern by outlining it on either side by 3/4-inch. If you used safety pins, be sure to remove those as your quilting. 

    When you're happy with your quilting, cut off any extra batting and backing.

    Outlining the herringbone pattern with quilting
    Stacy Fisher
  10. Make Binding

    Make your quilt binding.

    • Take two binding strips and place them right sides together perpendicular to each other. Sew a diagonal line to join them beginning and ending at the inward corner where the strips intersect. Repeat to join all the strips together. 
    • Press the seams you just sewed open and trim any triangles or "dog ears" that extend past the binding. 

    Fold the binding in half lengthwise, wrong sides together, and press.

    White quilt binding on a cutting board
    Stacy Fisher
  11. Attach Binding

    Attach your binding to sew your binding to the front of your table runner using your favorite method. Fold your binding to the back of the table runner and hand or machine sew to finish your table runner.

    Your table runner is complete.

    A close-up of white binding on a Christmas table runner
    Stacy Fisher

     

    A Christmas table runner
    Stacy Fisher