" ". The Smiling Cat: Primitive 9-Patch Table Runner-

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Primitive 9-Patch Table Runner-

  One thing all people that sew have in common-fabric scraps. Also, everyone seems to have their own system of organizing them.  Many cut & save as 5” squares or ‘nickels’ as they are sometimes called.  I save the nickels when the scraps are big enough, if not I cut them into 2” squares or 1-1/2” strips. 
Eventually, I end up with this:

Time for a scrappy project!  I started sorting through this pile, grouping together the matching fabrics & colors.  I decided to make some simple 9-patches, and use them to make a table runner.
To make a 23”x55” 9-Patch Table Runner, I used:
300  assorted 2” scrappy squares
240  2” white squares or 3/4 yard white cotton cut into 2” strips
1-1/2 yard fabric for backing & binding
Quilt batting
White thread & basic sewing tools 

I began to make sets of five matching fabrics, and sets of four matching with a complimentary square for the middle. 

Then, I stacked up the sets, and  cut some 2” strips of white cotton.  I didn’t cut the strips into squares, to save time I came up with a way to strip-piece the squares.


I took my stacks & strips to my sewing machine.  I put down a white strip and taking from the top of the stack, started placing a square at a time onto the white strip.  Sewing a 1/4" seam with right sides together, carefully keeping the squares in order, and putting aside one square from each set. 

After sewing a few strips, I pressed them & cut them into separate units.  Then, pressed each pair open, pressing the seam toward the scrappy square.

After pressing each pair open, I put one pair aside, then stitched the square that was set aside to the next pair.  I sewed together the last two pairs of the set, matching the center seams, and making sure that the seams were laying in opposite directions, to reduce the bulkiness.

After pressing all the units the same as before, I added the last set pairs.  This time pressing the seams toward the middle.  Now, I had a unit of three pairs, and a unit of three squares.

All that’s needed to finish the block is to add the last row of squares.

I finished sewing that last row to the block, and pressed this final seam toward the outside of the block.

I now had the finished 9-Patch block!  It’s important to take the time to turn the block over, and check that the seams are all laying straight like this:

Take the time now, and the finished project will lay out smoother & flatter.  Now, I swapped the positions of the white & the scrappy squares, and ended up with two piles of blocks:

Sixty blocks total.  Now, I started to join the blocks together, alternating the two blocks.  I know that most quilters create rows to sew together.  I like to join the blocks into squares of four blocks, then continue sewing the bigger blocks together.  When I connect the blocks in rows, the rows get a bit wavy looking.  
Also, when joining the blocks, I match both the corner seams.  This really helps keep everything nice & straight.   When all the blocks were joined, 5 rows x 12 rows, I layered the completed quilt top over the batting, then the batting over the backing fabric.  Pinned it all together, ready to be quilted!

I quilted by ‘stitching in the ditch’ which is just sewing over the seam lines with clear, quilting thread.

I then finished the edges with the double-fold bias binding.  You can the find the instructions for creating bias strips  Here 
The instructions  to finish with this binding is Here

I pieced the backing using the floral binding fabric & a cream colored cotton. 
Here are a few more pictures:

 DSC00459 (1)

I like this picture even though it doesn’t show much of the table runner.  I just like my Rooster Salt &Pepper shakers!
Well, that’s all for now-Hope you’re having a great day, Carole

Blogger Labels: Primitive,patchwork,Table runner,cottage style,fabric,scraps,fabric strips,cotton,quilt,sewing tools,quick piecing,seam,quilting,Country,bias binding,quick method,scrappy,Carole May,fabrics,patches,9-Patch units,easy,nickels


  1. Hi Carole,
    Your craftiness always impresses me! I fb and tweeted you!

  2. Carole, you put a lot of work into this tutorial. I'm impressed. I know how much time it takes to do a tutorial right.

    1. Thank you Susan! It did take me awhile to organize this project, but I enjoyed doing it. I'm still learning how to use Blogger. I particularly like your posts which included snippets from your grandmother's diary-what a nice idea!