Sunday, February 27, 2011

Glue Quilts & Table Runners

I love the way a patch work quilt looks. Somehow it conjures up feelings of eating cookies at Grandma's house. The only problem, my style of sewing is fast and sloppy. I cannot stand the tedium of pinning and measuring. So, when Jill and her sister Natalie introduced me to this gluing technique I couldn't wait to try it out on a new table runner for my dining room.

First, let me show you the full-size quilt that Natalie made and the adorable baby quilt that Jill created.Now that you are sufficiently tempted to make one too, here is how you do it.
First, pick a base color or two. For my table runner and Jill's baby quilt the top and bottom fabric matched, but for Natalie's larger quilt she picked a coordinating fabric for the bottom.

First, cut the fabric to your desired length. This may require you to sew some fabric together to achieve this desired size. For example, my table runner required 2 yards of fabric. I cut my fabric into 4 equal pieces, length wise. Then I sewed 2 pieces together twice to create 2 long skinny matching strips of fabric. Was that about as clear as mud or what? Pick out five or six coordinating fabrics to go with your base fabric. A simple way to do this is to buy a pack of charms at the fabric store and then cut those cute little squares into 4 pieces. You can also just bust out the scissors or rotary cutter and start making squares. For the table runner I cut out 44 pieces of 2.5" by 2.5" fabric.

Now that you have your long pieces of base fabric and all of your teeny weeny squares, (cut bigger squares for bigger quilts) you can begin to glue them onto your top fabric. Using Elmer's Glue apply in the following manner-around the outside with an "X" in the middle.Using a ruler begin adhering the squares to your top fabric.

When you have glued all of you squares, your hands have been washed of all that stickiness, and the glue is dry. You will apply the batting and bottom layer of fabric.
I used the brand of adhesive pictured above, but you could use craft bond as well. Spray your top fabric and then lay the batting on top. Try to make the batting as smooth and tight as you can. Then spray your bottom base fabric and lay the top fabric/batting onto it. Voila! You are now ready to sew and you haven't had to use a single pin.
Sew vertically and horizontally down the sides of each square. As pictured above.
(Note, do not pick up your stitch between squares sew the entire length and width of fabric.)
The back will look something like this when you are finished.
Finally, you have some options to finish the outside edges. Jill used a serger to finish her baby quilt. Natalie bound her quilt with the bottom fabric. I stitched completely around my table runner and then left the the edges raw. This made the runner a little more rustic looking, which I like.
When you have sewn up your outer edges using the method you prefer, throw it into the washer and then dry. The more you wash these quilts the better they look.


  1. What a great idea. Thank you so much for linking up to the party.

  2. Okay, that is one of the neatest things I've seen in a while! I've always loved the quilt look as well, but tedious is NOT in my repertoire. I'm definitely going to try this. I like your unfinished look as well. Another way to finish it would be to make binding strips, iron in half right sides out, and then sew it around the outside, leaving the rough side out still... so that it's got the finished/unfinished look. Make sense? I think I'm going to have to try this out. :)

  3. I loved this idea so much, that I tried making my own table runner with spring colors. Here is the link if you want to check it out!
    Thanks for posting the how-to!