This project is much faster and easier if you have an automatic ruffler attachment for your sewing machine. Janome makes a great one that fits all their models. These contraptions look a bit intimidating, but they make ruffling slicker than butter on a hot griddle (you thought I was going to say slicker than snot... didn't you???).
Our thanks to all our friends at Moda for providing the fabric for this project and to Angela for sharing her clever design. You can find Moda Fabrics at in-store and on-line retailers all over, including Fat Quarter Shop.
Sewing Tools You Need
Fabric and Other Supplies
- 1 Jelly Roll (40, 2½" wide x 44" strips): we used Deb Strain's Cherish Nature for Moda Fabrics
- ½ yard 44-45" wide solid fabric for base of table runner: we used Moda Bella Solid in a coordinating green
- 1 yard 44-45" wide fabric for backing and binding: we used Moda Bella Solid in a coordinating aqua blue
- 1 yard fusible fleece
- All purpose thread
- See-through ruler
- Fabric pen or pencil: we used the Sewline Fabric Pencil
- Iron and ironing board
- Scissors or rotary cutter and mat
- Straight pins
- Cut one 12" x 36" rectangle from the backing fabric (Moda's Bella Solid in aqua blue in our sample).
- Cut three 3" strips from the binding fabric (also Moda's Bella Solid in aqua blue in our sample) .
- Cut two 12" x 36" rectangles from the fusible fleece.
- Cut one 12" x 36" rectangle from the solid fabric for the base of the table runner (Moda's Bella Solid in green in our sample).
- Take the 12" x 36" piece of base fabric (Moda's Bella Solis in Green in our sample). Find the center by folding the fabric in half matching the two 12" ends.
- Press to create a crease on the fold. Unfold the fabric and re-mark this center line with your fabric pencil.
- Using your see-through ruler and fabric pencil, measure and mark lines on the fabric that are 2" apart, starting at your center line. Continue until you reach the end of your fabric both to the left and the right.
- Separate your Jelly Roll strips into the various color-ways.
NOTE: For more information on pre-cuts, check out this great article from our friends at Fat Quarter Shop.
- Select 19 strips in a pleasing palette to use as your rows of ruffles across the table runner.
- Press each jelly roll strip in half lengthwise.
- Then unfold and press the edges into the center.
At Your Sewing Machine & Ironing Board
- Using the ruffler attachment on your machine, set your foot to the tightest ruffle. On mine, this is #1.
- Place each pressed jelly roll strip, folded side up, into the ruffle foot guide. Center the strip under the needle, so your stitching is all in the center of the ruffle.
NOTE: If you don't have a ruffler attachment, you can instead run a long basting stitch down the center of each strip, and then gather up the ruffles by hand. For more tips, check out our tutorial: Gathering & Ruffles Made Easy. We recommended the ruffler because there are LOTS of ruffles.
- When all your selected Jelly Roll strips are gathered to approximately 12 - 15" in length, press to flatten and straighten out the ruffle.
- Remove the ruffler and replace your standard straight stitch sewing foot.
- Align the center of each ruffle strip, folded side down, with the center of each drawn line on your base fabric.
- Using a straight stitch and following your line of ruffler stitching, sew down the center of each strip, and then again about an 1/8" to either side of your center line of stitching. So, that's three lines of stitching on each ruffle strip.
- When all the strips are stitched in place on the base fabric, trim the ends of the ruffle strips so they are flush with the raw edges of the base fabric. Press your ruffled base so everything is nice and straight.
- Set aside.
- Find the two 12" x 36" pieces of fusible fleece. Fuse one piece to the wrong side of the ruffled base. Fuse the other to the wrong side of the 12" x 36" backing fabric piece.
- Place the two fused fabric pieces together with the fusible fleece sides facing each other, sandwiching the two pieces of fusible fleece inside the two pieces of fabric. The fabrics should be facing right side out.
- Pin the two pieces together, matching all raw edges.
- Find the three 3" x 44" binding strips.
- Pin all three binding strips together right sides together at the short ends at an 90˚ angle.
- Stitch at a 45˚ angle to create one long strip.
- Press all three seams so your one, long strip is nice and flat. You've just created your own bias binding. For more on this technique, check out our tutorial: Bias Tape: How To Make It & Attach It.
- Fold the binding in half lengthwise, wrong sides together, matching up raw edges.
- Starting in the middle of one long side, pin the binding to the top of the table runner, aligning the raw edges of folded binding with the raw edges of the table runner.
- Using a ½" seam allowance, stitch around all four edges. Make sure you have caught all the edges of the ruffles in the seam.
- Using a see-ruler and rotary cutter, trim your seam allowance down to ¼" all the way around the perimeter of the table runner.
- Fold over the folded edge of the binding to the back side of the table runner and whip stitch in place.
NOTE: The binding on this project is narrow enough to allow you to simply run a continuous line of stitching around the corners and then fold the binding over, creating rounded corners. If you prefer a mitered corner, follow the directions in our Bias Tape tutorial mentioned above .
Project Concept, Sample Creation and Instructional Editing: Angela Yosten
Other machines suitable for this project include the Elna 7300 and the Pfaff select 3.0.