I've probably said this many times with my fabric crafts, but I'll say it again...as a quilter, I always have loads of fabric scraps. According to my husband, I have way too many of them. Oh well, it is what it is, but because I have so many scraps, I'm always trying to come up with fun projects to use them in.
This colorful batik scrap table runner is one of those projects. It's fun and quirky, and can be finished in about one afternoon. That's my favorite kind of project.
For my runner, I used lots of jewel tone batiks, but this could easily be made with shades of one color, or another family of hues, like autumn tones. You can also use other cotton fabrics, but I like the batiks, not only for the saturated color, but for the fact that batiks are reversible. That makes the assembly a lot quicker and easier.
For this project you'll need some supplies and one is rather specialized, so you may have to purchase it. Here's what you'll need:
- Batik scraps
- Water soluble stabilizer - I have a roll of 12 inch by 9 feet which was more than ample for this project.
- Sewing machine
- Bowl of water
- Large workspace
Begin by gathering the scraps you'll be using. I didn't even bother pressing them. I like the more textured look it has when finished. Set the scraps aside.
1) Cut two pieces of the water soluble stabilizer to your desired length. Set one aside and lay the other one on your work surface. Something to keep in mind here is that once the sewing is done, the runner does shrink up a bit.
2) Start laying out the scraps on top of the strip of stabilizer until you are pleased with how it looks. I was pretty relaxed about this. I used all sorts of shapes and colors. I think for my next one I'm going to use small squares only and press them first. I think that might add a really interesting geometric level to the table runner.
3) Once you are happy with the look, lay the piece of stabilizer that you set aside on top of the fabric and start pinning the three layers together.
You'll be pinning a lot. You want to make sure to pin as many of the scraps down as possible. Once you are done pinning it's time to sew.
Tip: If your sewing machine is not near the work surface that you used to assemble, gently roll up the pinned runner and take it to your machine. Watch out for all of the pins!
1) Start sewing anywhere on the runner that you like.
2) I like to make one long straight seam down the length of the runner and then keep going back and forth at all sorts of diagonals. This is my favorite part of this project. It's almost like coloring. I just work my way back and forth, corner to corner or where ever it looks like a piece of fabric needs to be sewn down. You may want to be more methodical about it and sew a grid, or you may want to sew curves. You can do whatever you want. Just have fun.
3) The most important thing when sewing is to make sure every piece of fabric gets sewn together. You will use a lot of thread. My runner is about 11" wide and 48" long and I used two full bobbins of thread.
Once you are done sewing, it's time to remove the stabilizer.
1) Follow the directions on your water soluble stabilizer when removing it. The brand I used called for gently rinsing it in lukewarm water until all of the stabilizer disappears. If you have any kids, this is a definite step for them to help you with.
2) It's pretty cool for kids to watch what looks like wax paper, disappear in a matter of seconds when dipped in water.
3) I refresh the water a few times and gently rinse the runner out a few times. That helps get rid of some of the residue.
4) After you've rinsed the piece out, lay it flat on top of a towel to dry. It dries in a couple of hours.
Trim off any loose threads, press if desired, and lay it out on a table. Bingo...you have a unique and beautiful new table runner.
This runner is delicate so if you need to wash it for any reason, make sure to do it by hand and be gentle.
I just love this piece. My dinnerware is brightly colored and this ties my whole table together. It's a real conversation piece at dinner too.
Let your imagination soar when you make this table runner. It's loads of fun!
Labels: Crafts, Fabric, Sewing, Table Runners