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How to Sew a Hot Pad Table Runner

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Hot Pad Table Runner

Whenever we have a party or get-together, I always find myself scrambling to round up enough potholders and trivets to protect our sideboard and table. This is especially true when we host a potluck dinner. So, I decided to solve the problem by making a hot pad table runner. It’s insulated with three layers of batting, and has lots of room for hot dishes.

Vintage Tablecloth

After digging through my fabric stash, I decided to make my first hot pad table runner out of a vintage tablecloth. It’s one I picked up at a yard sale for next to nothing. It had several stains and age spots, so it seemed like the perfect candidate for an upcycling project.

The tablecloth measured 65 inches wide, so I decided to make that the length of my table runner. After measuring the top of my sideboard, I settled on a width of 18 inches.

Close Up of Hot Pad Table Runner

This was an easy project, and I love the way it turned out, so I’ll probably make a few more. Our dining room table and sideboard are both 10 feet long, so I’d like to make a table runner that runs their full length. I’d also like to make a couple holiday-specific table runners. It would be nice to have one for Thanksgiving and one for Christmas.

Want to make a hot pad table runner for yourself, or someone you know who likes to entertain? Here are the instructions.

Hot Pad Table Runner Tutorial

What You’ll Need:

Optional (but nice to have):

Back of Hot Pad Table Runner

Tip: Be strategic about what backing fabric you use. I chose a red and white polka dot pattern for my backing, so if I flip it over, it’ll work well for Christmas or Valentine’s Day.

What You Do:

Supplies for Hot Pad Table Runner

Decide how big you want your hot pad table runner to be. Cut your front fabric and batting to that size. Cut the backing fabric three inches longer and wider. This will give your the extra fabric you need to create the binding.

Lay Batting on Top of Backing Fabric

Lay the backing fabric, good side down, on your work surface, and mark 1.5″ in on all sides. Then, center a piece of the batting between your marks. Stack the Insul-Bright on top; then, add the final piece of batting.

Add Top Fabric and Pin

Place your front fabric on top of the batting layers, and secure with pins.

Quilt the Hot Pad

Then, quilt your hot pad to join all the layers. I marked a line two inches in from the edge, and another five inches in from the edge. Then, I just stitched along them. Stitching vertical lines would be difficult with this project, because of the length of the runner.

Fold the Top and Bottom Edge of the Backing Fabric Down

Once your table runner is quilted, it’s time to create the binding. To do this, fold the top and bottom edge of the backing fabric down, until it meets the top fabric and batting.

Cut the Excess From the Corners

Trim a rectangle our of each corner, to eliminate bulk.

Fold the Top and Bottom Edge Down Over the Other Layers

Then, fold the top and bottom edge down over your hot pad, and pin or clip in place.

Fold the Corners In

Fold the four corners in, like you’re wrapping a present.

Fold the Sides in to Meet the Other Layers

Then, fold the sides in to meet the top fabric and batting …

Fold the Sides in Over the Other Layers

and finish by folding the sides over your hot pad table runner.

Closeup of Binding With Mitered Edges

If you did it right, you should have nice, mitered corners.

Use Pins or Clips to Secure the Binding

Use plenty of pins or clips to secure your binding.

Sew the Binding Down

Then, use a 1/8″ seam to stitch your binding down. Trim your threads, and your hot pad table runner is ready for its first gathering.

To store your table runner, when it’s not in use. Just roll it up, like a sleeping bag, and tie a ribbon around it. This will keeping it from developing creases or wrinkles, and minimize the space it takes up.

More Sewing Projects to Try

Casserole Dish With Casserole Hot Pad

How to Sew a Casserole Dish Hot Pad

How to Sew a Soup Bowl Cozy

How to Sew a Soup Bowl Cozy

How to Make a Jean Pocket Potholder

How to Make Jean Pocket Potholders

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  1. Oh I love your ideas! Thank you so much, I actually have some vintage table clothes similar to the one your showed, as well as scraps that will make beautiful runners…no one needs one more decorative table runner but a beautiful hot pad runner, now there is beauty AND function! Be well and sew on 🙂

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