Free Holiday Table Runner Tutorial

This FREE holiday table runner tutorial shows step by step how to make a quick and easy quilted table runner for the Christmas season! suzyquilts.com #christmasdiy #tablerunner

Hello my fellow holiday sewists and Christmas DIYers! I have a new holiday table runner tutorial for you today that checks all of the boxes you're looking for this sewing season—it's fast (and can be made even faster with a couple shortcuts), it's practical, it's pretty and it's FREE! Ho! Ho! Ho!

You may recognize some of these Matisse-inspired templates from the Bohemian Garden quilt pattern. The rest of the templates, the holiday ones, are from the festive placemats tutorial we sewed last year, making this holiday table runner a beautiful companion piece.

In this tutorial we will make a basic table runner and then sew the appliqué pieces in place using the raw-edge appliqué technique.

This FREE holiday table runner tutorial shows step by step how to make a quick and easy quilted table runner for the Christmas season! suzyquilts.com #christmasdiy #tablerunner

I gave my red placemats away as a gift last year, so I didn't need them to coordinate in color, hence the red, white and blue patriotic situation you see here. Ideally, if you are keeping both the table runner and placemats for yourself, they will match a little better than mine do.

A FREE DIY Christmas placemats tutorial! This raw-edge applique sewing tutorial includes supplies, steps and a video tutorial PLUS free modern holiday applique templates! suzyquilts.com #ChristmasDIY #appliquetutorial

Holiday Table Runner Tutorial in 3 Steps

Since we have already covered every single technique and step to make this holiday table runner in past posts on the blog, mostly what I'll do is link to those posts that instruct in greater detail how to do each step. Of course, I have some extra tips and shortcuts for you in case you are pressed for time and need to get this DONE.

Holiday Table Runner Tutorial Supplies

I purchased all of my sewing supplies from Michaels. If you want to make this holiday table runner in even less time, start with a premade table runner and simply add the appliqué pieces, just like I did in the placemats tutorial.

Oh! I should also add that it doesn't need to be a quilted runner, either. Here's a pretty solid-colored linen runner I found on Etsy that would work great too.

Step 1: Start with a Simple Table Runner

Prewash all of your fabric! This runner is going to get spilled on and run through the wash multiple times, so definitely prewash your fabric.

Like I mentioned in the Supplies section, you don't have to make the table runner. A great shortcut is starting with a purchased table runner and then adding the appliqué pieces. If you do that I recommend prewashing the table runner as well as your appliqué fabric.

This FREE holiday table runner tutorial shows step by step how to make a quick and easy quilted table runner for the Christmas season! suzyquilts.com #christmasdiy #tablerunner

I only had four days to make this holiday table runner so I needed to work fast and find myself a good cheerleader. Check and check! Thanks, JoJo!

Making the base of this holiday table runner only took me a couple hours. It's really, really easy. I promise.


This FREE holiday table runner tutorial shows step by step how to make a quick and easy quilted table runner for the Christmas season! suzyquilts.com #christmasdiy #tablerunner

I finished the table runner with simple straight line quilting. If you are new to straight line quilting, check out this tutorial below. I chose a navy thread that matched the fabric so it wouldn't draw too much attention away from the appliqué. 


This FREE holiday table runner tutorial shows step by step how to make a quick and easy quilted table runner for the Christmas season! suzyquilts.com #christmasdiy #tablerunner

Step 2: Cut Out and Adhere the Appliqué Pieces

With a marking tool, trace the outline of your template onto the right side of your fabric. I like to cluster my templates together so I can use the smallest amount of fabric.

After that I followed this Festive Placemats Tutorial except for one thing—I used a glue stick instead of fusible webbing. I can now speak from experience that both options work well. The fusible webbing does make machine sewing the appliqué easier because every edge is securely in place whereas with the glue it's easy to miss spots.

Once your pieces are cut, this is your time to have fun arranging! If you want to jam pack your holiday table runner with cut outs, cool! If you just want to place two doves on one end, oooh la la how elegant! You can use as many of these template shapes as you like.


This FREE holiday table runner tutorial shows step by step how to make a quick and easy quilted table runner for the Christmas season! suzyquilts.com #christmasdiy #tablerunner

I ended up working on my floor, but if your table is clear, why not make the table runner on the table where it will live onces it's finished!

Step 3: Sew the Appliqué Pieces

Because the glue stick did just an OK job securing the appliqué pieces in place, my first move was to quilt another set of straight rows over the top of the appliqué pieces. If you are starting with a purchased table runner that is only one layer of fabric and not quilted, I wouldn't take the time to do this.

This FREE holiday table runner tutorial shows step by step how to make a quick and easy quilted table runner for the Christmas season! suzyquilts.com #christmasdiy #tablerunner

I backstitched at the beginning and end of each row and snipped the threads once I finished all of it.

This FREE holiday table runner tutorial shows step by step how to make a quick and easy quilted table runner for the Christmas season! suzyquilts.com #christmasdiy #tablerunner
This FREE holiday table runner tutorial shows step by step how to make a quick and easy quilted table runner for the Christmas season! suzyquilts.com #christmasdiy #tablerunner

Once I finished quilting it was time to secure the appliqué. I started off using my walking foot (cause my runner was thick from being quilted) like in this video tutorial...


After sewing a handful of pieces I realized that even though things were looking quite neat and tidy, I needed to pick up the pace! This is when I decided to break out the free-motion foot and try my hand at free-motion sewing these pieces down.

Ya'll it's been a couple years since sewing free motion, so the first little bit was not pretty. Once I got the hang of it, though (cause it really is like riding a bicycle), I had speed and accuracy-ish on my side. I was finished in no time! YAY!


This FREE holiday table runner tutorial shows step by step how to make a quick and easy quilted table runner for the Christmas season! suzyquilts.com #christmasdiy #tablerunner
This FREE holiday table runner tutorial shows step by step how to make a quick and easy quilted table runner for the Christmas season! suzyquilts.com #christmasdiy #tablerunner

Of course, if you don't want the fuzzy raw edges of raw-edge appliqué, another technique, that is much more time consuming but yes, does look a lot better, is needle-turn appliqué.


This FREE holiday table runner tutorial shows step by step how to make a quick and easy quilted table runner for the Christmas season! suzyquilts.com #christmasdiy #tablerunner

Are you planning to use this holiday table runner tutorial for some festive fun? Let us know in the comments!

This FREE holiday table runner tutorial shows step by step how to make a quick and easy quilted table runner for the Christmas season! suzyquilts.com #christmasdiy #tablerunner

14 thoughts on “Free Holiday Table Runner Tutorial

  1. Sashanna Hart says:

    This is gorgeous, and after reading this article and the one on the placemats I feel like I just need to get over my hesitation to do applique! It doesn’t look hard at all and the results are beautiful! My grandma uses placemats all the time so maybe I should start with some premade ones like you did and make her some for Christmas.

  2. Nancy DeRodeff says:

    Your children are so adorable. How she smiles and he practices his quilting! I love this project. I especially appreciate the idea of using a heavier backing fabric. It makes a lot of sense. I’d do it for placemats to lose that droopy quality. Thank you so very much!

    • Suzy Quilts says:

      Thank you! Desi has a long way to go before I really trust him around my sewing machine, but hopefully in a few years he’ll be making his own projects! That is, if he still has interest. His trucks and daddy’s lawn mower are also high on his priority list 😉

  3. Lily says:

    hi suzy, i noticed the quilting done in blue, then you switched to white? can the applique be sewn down before any quilting is done? would all the quilting be done in white then? i really like this pattern. thank you so much for sharing with us.

    • Suzy Quilts says:

      Thanks, Lily! Yes, I switched up the quilting thread for no real reason other than I felt like it and didn’t want navy thread on my white applique. The applique pieces can definitely be sewn to the top layer of fabric before the quilting is done. That is actually how you would normally do it if making a raw-edge applique quilt. I just did it this way cause I thought it would be faster, but I’m not sure it really was…hmmm…lol!

  4. Natassa says:

    This is so simple but totally beautiful. I would like to ask you though, did you put a binding? It does not look like it.

    • Laura Hopper says:

      Hi Joyce! If you click on the first two links under the heading “Holiday Table Runner Tutorial Supplies,” you’ll find the templates. Enjoy making your table runner!

  5. Janequiltsslowly says:

    I’ve been thinking about using the holiday templates on a tree skirt and this tutorial gave me the idea to find a plain premade tree skirt and then add the appliqué. I am also going to use felt for the shapes so I won’t have to worry about fraying.

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