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Make It Now: Ugly Christmas Sweater Table Runner

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The holidays are just around the corner, and we have a festive tutorial to share! Leslie Meltzer made this epic holiday table runner combining two of our favorite trends, ugly Christmas sweaters and pom-poms. She also used optional LED lights from Superior Threads to light it up! This project makes a fabulous addition to your holiday décor, and would look great in lots of different Timeless holiday fabrics and blenders. The best part? It’s quick to whip up, and perfect to get you into the holiday spirit after your Thanksgiving celebration!

We hope you enjoy making this table runner; continue on for Leslie’s instructions.


Tacky Table Runner (measures approx. ~18” x 38 ½”)

Before you begin, read all instructions. Sew with a ¼” seam allowance unless otherwise noted.

Supplies:

⅓ yard main fabric (Gail-C4840-Merry)
¼ yard black fabric for inner border (Soho Black)
¼ yard of two fabrics for the checkerboard border (Soho White and Pin-C2114-Red)
¼ yard of green fabric for outer border (Fun-C8224-Grass)
3 ½ yards of pom-pom trim (white, large size)
⅔ yard for backing (Gail-C4840-Merry)
~22” x 43” of quilt batting (low to mid-loft recommended)
Superior Threads LED Fun Kit (includes a battery, battery holder, conductive thread, and 4 LEDs – I used 10 total LEDs powered by 2 batteries on my project)
Notions (rotary cutter, pins, iron, coordinating thread)

Cut:

From main fabric, cut a rectangle that is 11” x 32”

For inner border, cut 3 strips that are 1¼” x WOF (width of fabric)

  • Subcut 2 long strips to 1 ¼” x 33 ½”
  • Subcut 1 strip into 2 – 1 ¼” x 11” pieces

For checkerboard border, cut 2 strips that are 2” x WOF from each of the 2 fabrics.

  • Create 2 strip sets by sewing the strips together along the long edge and press toward the darker fabric.

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  • Subcut the strip sets into 3 ½” x 2” units
    • Sew 4 units together alternating colors. Press to the darker fabric. This will be your second border for the short end of the table runner. Repeat to create the inner border for the other side.
    • Sew 12 units together alternating colors. Press to the darker fabric. This will be your second border for the long end of the table runner. Repeat to create the inner border for the other side.

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For outer border, cut 3 strips that are 2 ½” x WOF

  • Subcut 2 long strips to 2 ½” x 40 ½”
  • Subcut 1 strip into 2 – 2 ½” x 15 ½”

Sew:

  1. Begin by sewing the 1 ¼” x 11” pieces of the black inner border right sides together to the short sides of the main fabric. Press seams toward inner border.
  2. Sew the 1 ¼” x 33 ½” pieces of the black inner border right sides together to the long sides of the table runner. Press towards black fabric.
  3. Use a design wall to lay out the pieces for your checkerboard border, making sure that the pattern of red and white alternating squares is correct on all 4 sides.
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  4. Sew one small set of the checkerboard border right sides together to each short side of the table runner. Press towards black fabric.
  5. Sew one long set of the checkerboard border right sides together to each long side of the table runner. Press towards black fabric.
  6. Sew the 2 ½” x 15 ½” green outer border strips right sides together to each short end of the table runner. Press towards green fabric.
  7. Sew the 2 ½” x 40 ½” green outer border strips right sides together to each long end of the table runner. Press towards green fabric.
  8. Your table runner top is now complete. Quilt as desired.
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  9. Pin or spray baste a piece of quilt batting larger than the size of your table runner to the top and add some quilting. (I wanted to have some quilting in the center of the runner, but I didn’t want to stitch through the conductive thread for the LEDs.) I used a chalk wheel to mark a diagonal line across the center and stitched lines 1 ½” apart in 2 directions to create a grid pattern.
  10. Determine where you would like to place your LEDs and mark the location on the top (I used pins.) I used Superior Threads LED kit to light up my table runner. To learn how to use LEDs and conductive thread, please visit their tutorials page. I briefly touched upon the steps below.
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  11. Following Superior Threads instructions, create a template that you will use to mark the corresponding location of where your LEDs will be placed on the backing fabric.
  12. Using your template in mirror image, mark the right side of your backing fabric and sew the conductive thread to your backing fabric using a couching technique. (You can see the black lines of stitching where I zigzagged over the conductive thread.)
  13. Measure your table runner top. Cut your batting and backing fabric to the same size as the table runner. NOTE: When you are preparing to cut your backing fabric to size, take care to make sure that your conductive thread will still follow the path of your lights. I checked mine by placing the right side of the backing to the right side of my table runner top.
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  14. Measure the width of the tape on the pom-pom strip and note the size. This will be important when we assemble the table runner. The strip on mine was ¼”.
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  15. Layer your batting and table runner top. Baste together using a ⅛” seam allowance and long stitch length.
  16. On the right side of the fabric, align the tape edge of your pom-pom trim with the edge of the table runner and batting. Pin in place.
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  17. Being careful not to sew the pom-poms into your stitching, baste the pom-pom trim to the edge of the table runner/batting using a ⅛-¼” seam allowance (I used a scant ¼”.) A zipper foot is very helpful for this step. This also secures your batting to the top in preparation for turning it right sides out.
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  18. Place your backing fabric on top of your table runner right sides together. Pin around all edges leaving an 8” gap on one short end for turning. (I pinned as far away from the edge as I could so the pom-poms would not accidentally be stitched into the seam.)
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  19. Using a ⅜” seam allowance (NOTE: if your pom-pom trim was not ¼”, calculate your seam allowance equal to the width of the tape + ⅛”), sew around all sides pivoting at the corners. By using a measurement that is wider than the pom-pom trim, you are fully enclosing the tape so you only see the pom-poms on the edges.
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  20. Clip the corners to reduce bulk and gently turn the table runner right side out through the opening you left on one short side. Gently poke out the corners. Press.
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  21. Stitch the opening closed by hand or machine.
  22. Quilt as desired. I stitched in the ditch between the main fabric and the black inner border and quilted a line ¼” away from the edge on both sides of the green outer border.
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  23. Following Superior Threads instructions, finish installing the LED lights and connect them to the conductive thread on the backing.
  24. Enjoy your Tacky Table Runner!
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