How to Make a Table Runner

  • How to Decorate Team


A table runner can add life and personality to your table. It can also protect it from warm serving dishes and fresh arrangements filled with water.

So how can you make one? It really is a simple, no sew project. And we will be happy to walk you through the process.

  • Choose a fabric that is relatively thick – cotton or cotton/poly blends (for a relaxed look) or a satin or brocade (for a more formal look).
  • Measure the width of your table – your finished table runner should be about one third the width of your table. Add one and one half inches to all sides to allow for hemming.
  • Measure the length of your table – your finished length should be the length of the table plus twelve inches on both ends for the overhang. Again, make sure you add an additional one and one half inches to allow for hemming.
  • When cutting the fabric make sure you allow one and one half inches along all edges for seams. If your want your finished runner to be 18” wide and 90” in length, then you would cut your fabric 21” wide and 93” in length.
  • Measure one half inch all around the edges folding and pressing the raw edges onto the wrong side of your fabric.
  • Now fold the seam over again – one inch to create the hem and press into place.
  • Place the No-Sew Hemming Tape inside the one inch seam that you just pressed – use the directions on the No Sew Tape to seal the hem.
  • You can keep the corners square or if you wish or if you want pointed edges on either end, just fold the corners to meet in the center of the fabric attaching the ends with No-Sew Tape.


There are many options for embellishing a runner. If you choose a plain cotton fabric, try using a rubber stamp and fabric paint stamping a design along the border or creating an allover print by randomly stamping the fabric. Try using a feather or a leaf dipped in paint and pressed onto the fabric for an organic, outdoor look. If you have a beach theme, try pressing the outline of some different sized shells in a random pattern. Instead of a tassel at the end on your runner, why not attach shells tied with raffia? Or if you have a more formal look, purchase some crystal drops at your local craft store to hook onto the ends. Whatever your table theme, making a table runner can customize your look and your guests will be amazed!

So don’t be afraid of tackling this simple project. The sky’s the limit when it comes to creating a table runner. We have given you a few ideas but would love to see your creations, so send us a picture of your design!

Posted 4/21/2013

How to Decorate Team

We enjoy spending days interacting with How to Decorate readers. From answering Design Dilemmas to writing How To articles and working with guest designers, our passion is to provide informative and accurate resources to help people solve their design problems.


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