One mother sharing her knowledge with others.

How to Make a One Hour Table Runner

This is my version of the 10 Minute Table Runner because as I mentioned in my FNSI post…

“…..I defy anyone to cut panels from two different fabrics, pin and sew those panels together, press the seams either open or to one side, turn right side out and press again; centering the narrower fabric over the wider fabric, pin and sew the ends, press that seam open, turn the end to form the point and then either sew that in place or sew on a button at each end to keep the point in place.  And do it all in 10 minutes.”

My version is also longer than the 10 minute table runner which is cut width of fabric; resulting in a finished table runner that is at most 40 inches long.

I like my table runners to be at least as long as the table but prefer them to hang over the end a little bit.   Here’s how I arrived at the measurements required to fit my table.

My table is 60 inches long.  I wanted an overhang of 4 inches on either end.  Add ½” seam allowance to each end.

60” + 8” + 1”= 69” long

To calculate how wide to cut the panels, I decided I wanted a 14” wide table runner, with two borders of 2 ½” and allowing for ¼” seam allowance (times 2 seams):

14” – 5” + ½” = 9 ½” width required for the feature fabric that runs down the center of the table runner.

14” + 5” + ½” = 19 ½” width required for the fabric that will form the backing and the borders of the table runner.

Most cotton fabrics come in 44/45” widths.  If I cut my fabric across the width of the fabric, I’d have to sew two pieces together to get a length of fabric long enough to make my table runners.

Instead, what I do is purchase 2 yards of fabric (72”.)   The extra inches are to allow for wonky cutting at the fabric store and any shrinkage that may occur when I pre-wash the fabric.

After the fabric is washed and pressed, measure and cut it to 69”.

Fold it in half lengthwise and then in half again.  Place it on the cutting mat and square up one side.

Make one cut 19 ½” wide and a second cut 9 ½” wide from each fabric.

A rotary cutter, quilt ruler, and cutting mat are recommended. (<-affiliate links)

Cut the second fabric

Cut feature fabric

This achieves two things.  First it maximizes the use of the fabric and second it provides enough panels to make two table runners with the feature fabric reversed.

Next mark the centers on the long edges of one 19 ½” wide panel and one 9 ½” panel.

Match center point of each long side

Pin the panels together matching the centers and the ends and continue pinning along the entire length making sure the panels lie flat against each other.

Sew with ¼” seam allowance.

Repeat with other long side of each panel.

The result will be a tube of fabric.

Press the seams open.

Press seam open

Turn right side out.

Center the feature fabric over the backing fabric and pin in place.

Center feature fabric over second fabric


Topstitch on either side of both long seams.

Topstitch on either side of seam

To form the point at the end of the table runner:

Fold the narrow end in half with the backing fabric to the inside.  Pin and sew with ½” seam allowance.

Clip inside corner as shown below and trim seam to ¼”.

Fold narrow ends with back right side facing

Press seam open.

Press end seam open

Turn point right side out.  Match the seam of the pointed end to the center of the feature fabric.  Pin in place.  Press.

Pin, centering seam in center of second fabric

Topstitch close to the edge.

Topstitch to hold in place

If desired, a button can be added for decoration.

Sew a button to hold end in place

Repeat the above steps with the other two fabric panels.

One Hour Table Runners

Now for a little confession… when I was taking photos for this tutorial, I missed taking ones of the steps to complete the points at the end of the table runners.   These table runners are so quick to make that it would have been easy to sew another one and take the required photos. However, I discovered that I only had about 15”X40” left of the green fabric and an 8”X72” strip of the red.  I’m still trying to figure out what I used the rest of the fabric for.

Anyway, I cut long enough pieces of what was left of each fabric and sewed them together so that I could then take pictures showing how to form the point on the table runner.

Once that was done… I was left with an odd little item that I wasn’t quite sure what to do with.  I hate wasting fabric but I also didn’t feel much like unpicking all those seams so that I could use the fabric in something else.

Then an idea occurred to me.  Why not sew another point on the unfinished end and turn it into a little mat to put candy dishes on.

demo end

It didn’t look too bad.  But it was still kind of an odd shaped little item.

Then another idea occurred to me.   I flipped it over and did a little origami style folding.

Some pinning and sewing and this is the result:

Origami style folding

It’s even reversible.

Even the back is pretty

Now I just need to decide whether to use it as a mug rug or a candle mat.

This post contains affiliate links. For more information please check my Disclosures and Disclaimers page. It doesn’t cost you any extra, but it does help support this site.


  • Maria
    November 2, 2011 12:17 am

    Well done and you clever making the candle mat/mugrug.

  • Sandra :)
    November 3, 2011 12:03 pm

    I finally get it! I’ve read versions of that blog online many times but the instructions for the pointed end always went over my head – until now — NOW I GET IT!!

  • Robin (rsIslandCrafts)
    November 6, 2011 7:39 am

    Wonderful tutorial. I like how you figured a way to use up the last bit of fabric to make a candle mat.

  • Barbara
    November 1, 2015 2:40 pm

    I love this table runner tutorial! Thank you for sharing. The only thing I chose to do differently is the top stitching down the length of the runner. I like the look until it reaches the point so I just upicked the part that should show on the point.

  • Charlene
    December 10, 2015 5:26 pm

    I love the origami mug rug/candle mat, very clever! I tried to do but guess my measurements weren’t right, didn’t come out for me to origami fold. Had width 8″ & 15″ but what length?

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