Thursday, September 1, 2011
Table Topper Square Tutorial by Angie
Hi everyone! My name is Angie and I'm so glad to be here today to share this little tutorial with you. To be quite honest, this is a selfishly-motivated project. I love table runners. They add color and personality to an otherwise boring, empty table. However, my dining room table is square, which means a typical table runner won't fit. So, I decided to make a square table-topper instead. I hope you like it!
I started out breaking into my much-loved stash of Soul Blossoms stash. I used my half-yard pieces to cut strips for the topper, but you could very easily make this a scrap-busting project. Also, there aren't many specific measurements, which makes it even easier to use your scraps.
To begin with, decide how big you want your topper to be. I wanted mine to be about 16-inches square. Then, choose your fabrics. I chose 10 Soul Blossoms fabrics and Kona white for the background.
Cut a 2-inch strip out of each fabric. Then sub cut each fabric into varying lengths. It isn't essential to measure these, but you can if you want. I kept mine between 3-1/2 and 8-1/2 inches in length. Just be sure to cut them with straight edges for easier sewing later.
Mark your cutting mat with tape to help you keep your edges in mind as you place your fabrics. Since I chose 16 inches, the bottom of my tape pieces are at the 16-inch mark on my mat.
Begin laying your strips out from corner to corner on your mat, overlapping by a 1/4-inch or so to adjust for what you will lose in seams. Try to balance out the different lengths and off-set each strip from the others a bit. (Alternatively, you could line them up and center them with each other, which would also be a nice look.)
Once you have the layout you like, start lining up your white strips to make a row with each print strip. The white should extend past your measurement line (in the picture below, I added a pencil and Sharpie to show you my 16-inch line.)
Cut, leaving plenty of "wiggle room".
Repeat for the opposite side of the strip, again, extending well beyond your measurement lines.
Repeat until all print fabrics have background beside them.
Sew each row - one print strip between two white strips. Line the rows back up on your mat, making sure you still cover your measurement lines and adjust your prints if needed.
At this point, I suggest taking a picture. I did this and it helped me to see exactly where I wanted the printed fabrics and kept me from adding them upside-down.
To sew together, take the top row and flip it down over the second row, pinning in place. I don't often pin, but it is important here so we don't end up shifting too much and not clearing our measurement lines.
As you go back and forth, be sure to line up your sewn rows with the measurement line (my pencil, below) before pinning to the next row. Also, please ignore the nail-polish. I promise it looked better in the bottle... *sigh*
When you're done, you should have something that looks like this:
Trim all the edges off to your specified size (again, mine was 16-inches).
Repeat on the remaining three sides. Top is done.
Cut some backing fabric and batting, allowing for an extra 1-2 inches on each side. Baste and quilt as desired.
Because I started with half-yard cuts of the Soul Blossoms print, I used the leftover 2-inch strips to make my binding. You could also use scraps to build your binding or you could cut 2 (or 2-1/2 inch strips) out of other fabrics.
Bind in your usual manner. (If you aren't sure how to bind, there are great tutorials here and here.)
Give it a good wash and dry for a good dose of crinkly goodness and you're all done! A bright, cheery center for your table!
I hope you enjoyed this tutorial, and thanks again to Aubrey for having me! There are several other tutorials on my blog, so feel free to stop by sometime. I'd love to see you there!