Star Quilted Runner – Pick a Seasonal Theme!

The Star Quilted Runner is a simple star quilted piece that a beginner can try. Some quilting knowledge is helpful. Fabric theme is up to you! I made mine in the fall, so it has a fall theme. I’ll be happy to answer any questions in the comments!

A star for any season!

Try this star quilted runner for Christmas!Click To Tweet

christmas

Instructions:

Finished size is approx. 33" x 13.5"

Quilt Supplies:
Cutting mat, rotary cutter, clear quilting ruler
Straight pins (I use glass headed pins)
Quilting safety pins (Kwik Clip optional)
Scissors, sewing machine, iron

Fabric – I usually buy more fabric than needed, therefore I have more if I make a mistake.
fabric

3/4 yd. each of two contrasting fabrics ( for 8 stars) (6″ blocks) – Also used for the in-between borders.
1/2 yd. inside border
1/2 yd. outside border
3/4 yd. backing
Batting – Warm and Natural is one brand we use.

Prepare fabric by washing and squaring off. Squaring off is simply putting the selvages together, and using a cutting mat, taking off the uneven cut in preparation to cut strips.

Cutting Strips:
1. Cut 2 7/8″ strips from each color for the stars. You’ll need 8 squares of each color.

2-78-squares

2. Cut each 2 7/8 square diagonally and set aside. If you are really good at rotary cutting, you can cut two at a time. This is will give you 16 triangles of each color.

diagonal

3. Cut 2 1/2″ strips from each color. You’ll need 20, 2 1/2″ squares of each star color. These make up the middle and corner blocks of each star.

Sewing Star Blocks

  • All seams are 1/4″
  • RST=Right Sides Together
  • Chain sewing means not to cut the thread between block sets, sew continuously when possible.
  • Pin carefully and pin the side you need to sew, or pin with the point toward the end to sew. For rows, pin right at the seam so seams match. 
  • Trim the ‘bunny ears’, if you want to. I do sometimes.
  • Most of all, press your blocks carefully. Do not stretch or or ‘under’ press by making an extra seam. Make sure they are flat and open. If this isn’t done right, consequently, you’ll end up with a larger or smaller sewn block.

Here is a layout of one star combination. You’ll be making 4 of each combination of fabrics. For each star, you’ll need 4 triangles of each color sewn together.

  1. Chain sew, 16 sets of triangle combinations, making 32 blocks. The corner squares are your 2 1/2″ squares.

layout-block

For each star I will sew the first two blocks in each row, press carefully open, and then add the 3rd block. Layout 8 blocks, 4 of each combination.

2. RST, row 1, lay block one on two PIN THE SIDE TO BE SEWN – repeat for rows two and three. Sew. Now, pin the the 3rd block to each set, sew.

sew-star-blocks

If you are good at logically laying out blocks to put together, chain sew all the first two blocks in the 8 layouts at once.  Then add the 3rd block.

IRON: Row 1: Press the middle seams outward. Row 2: Press the middle seams inward. Row 3: Press the middle seams outward.
Chain sewing:

sew-squares

Sewing Star Rows:

Once the blocks are sewn into rows, sew the rows together.

Iron: Press the seam on the first two rows sewn together upward. Add the 3rd row press the seam down.

sew-rows

Pin the first row to the second row in each block set. Make sure your pins are pointing toward the end to be sewn.

Some Tips: The first picture shows you how not to sew over a star point. You want to stay above the ‘v’. The second picture is aligning your seams in the row.

sewpoints

Align and PIN the seams.

matchseams

Make 8 blocks – Each should measure 6″ when done.

Sew Star Blocks:

Now it’s time to sew your blocks together. Below is a picture of all blocks, in addition to the in-between borders. You are using the same method of aligning the blocks, and pinning (RST). PIN the side you need to sew, align the seams.

Iron: Row 1, seam left. Row 2, seam right. Row 3, seam left. Row 4, seam right.

Make 4 sets.

star-border-layout

Add the Borders

For the In-between borders: Cut 1 border strip 2″ x 11 3/4″ from one star color, and 2 from the other star color. These are the in between star row borders. On the first set, RST, pin the border to the bottom. Sew. Sew the next row to the border. Repeat until the piece is complete.

Inner Border: 
Probably the easiest way to add any outside border is to measure the width and length of the piece first. The inner border is 1 1/2″ in width. Measure the top and the bottom. Use the smallest measurement for length. Cut the border strip. Pin RST, and sew the top and bottom borders in place. Press up. Repeat this process for the sides.
Outer Border:
Because runners have more length than width, I only added a top and bottom outer border. Use the process of measuring for length as above. The width is 2 1/2″ on mine, or pick a larger width if desired.

Layering the Quilt
First of all, I do not pin a quilt on the carpet, unless I use T pins to hold it down. I couldn’t get this on my table at the time. The best way is to use a hard surface, like a hardwood floor, or a table.

  1. Backing face down – I normally tape the backing to the surface, you want it smooth and bubble free as you pin.
  2. Batting
  3. Quilt top face up.

layer

kwikclip
I’m a fan of tools that work. This handy little gadget will open and close a safety pin in a jiffy.

Pin the Quilt Layers

Using quilting safety pins, start pinning in the middle and at intervals of 3″.

pinquilt

Quilting
Tip: A Walking Foot helps to pull quilted layers evenly under the needle. If you quilt a lot, it’s a good investment.

I used a basic ‘stitch in the ditch’ instead of drawing a grid across. This is the simplest method for beginners. Start in the middle and follow the seam. Quilt the major seams, and around the stars. You can use a stippling method or free motion to make a swirl on the inside of the star. See how to use free motion or stippling on a quilt HERE. Scroll down to ‘Stippling on a Quilt’.

stitchinditchAfter you finish quilting, trim off the outside edges of extra fabric and batting. You are ready to bind your quilt.
Tip: I will measure the top and bottom width, and the sides. They should measure closely the same. If not, the quilt could lay or hang ‘crooked’. The method to fix this would be to trim. It’s more advanced, so I won’t go over it here. (But there’s always Google!)

Binding – Videos and helps below!

I make continuous strips for binding. Cut 2 1/4″ inch strips from the backing fabric. I think I needed 3 full strips for this quilt. Lay them as shown. Especially relevant here is the pattern, make sure it will not be opposite once the strip is joined.

lay-strips-join

I like to fold down the corner and press quickly. Pin.

iron-sewline-binding

Sew the line!

join-strips-binding

Open and press. Join the other strips until you have enough to go around the quilt.

joined-binding

Now, fold in half and press. This is now ready to be sewn to the quilt.

fold-binding-half

finished

We have a few posts that will help you finish up your quilt.

Have Fun!

Videos: Applying Binding
How to Slip Stitch Binding the Right Way

Feel free to ask questions in the comments!

Happy Quilting,
theresa

Try this EASY star for a pretty runner from Joyous Home! Use any seasonal theme! Happy to answer questions in the comments!