No-Sew Burlap Tablerunners – The Fabric of Fall

Looking for a quick, easy, and inexpensive way to update your dining table? Look no further than burlap! If you haven’t noticed by now, we are B-A-N-A-N-A-S over burlap. It’s cheap, easy to find and oh so versatile!  One might say our love affair with burlap began with table runners – they work in casual settings, as well as semi-formal ones, you can stamp them with a monogram, paint a design on it, thread ribbon through it, layer it with other table runners, or you can mix and match any of these ideas. The possibilities are endless! We could go on and on with ideas of what you can do with this splendid grain sack, but for now, here’s how to make a simple no-sew burlap table runner that works perfectly with your fall décor – although if you ask us, they work for all seasons!

You will need:

A tape measure

Burlap (yardage will vary based on table length or table width) – If you’re planning to do a double layered runner, then you’ll need two different colors of burlap – here you see tan and cream.


Iron (optional)

Here’s the easiest way to measure your runner:  take a runner that you already have and lay it over the lenght of your burlap and use that as a guide to cut it to the same size!  Is that cheating?  Nope!  We think it’s genius! 

If you do no have a table runner to use as a guide, then here is how to make one:

 OK, let the fun begin!

1) Decide if you want a traditional table runner spanning the length of your table or multiple runners that span across the width of your table serving as two person placemats.

2) Measure the length and width of your table.

3) Take the below tips into consideration and cut your burlap to your desired width.

An easy way to cut burlap is to pull a thread from where you want to cut it. This leaves a nice path for a nice straight edge.

4) If you are making a traditional runner the rule of thumb is 1/3 the width of your table. Of course this is solely personal preference and you may decide to make your runner wider or narrower, especially if you plan to layer your runner. If the burlap runner is going to be the bottom layer, you will want to cut it longer and wider than the runner you plan to put on top. If your burlap runner is going to be the top layer, you will want to cut it shorter and narrower than runner you are using for the bottom layer.

For example, Dawn layered her burlap runner over a 13 inch hemstitch runner so she cut her burlap 9.5 inches wide which allowed the hemstitch detail on the bottom layer to show.

Christine went with runners that spanned the width of her table, and layered different colors of burlap, so she cut the bottom layer slightly wider than her placemats at 13 inches and the next layer at 9 inches. The rule of thumb here is ¼ the length of your table.

4) Take the below tips into consideration and cut your burlap to your desired length

    • If you want your runner to hang over the side of your table, cut your burlap 12 inches longer than your length or width measurement (depending on the type of runner you decided to make) to allow for 6 inches of overhang on each end. Again, this is personal preference and you can always make the runner longer or shorter.  If you are unsure, cut the burlap longer than you think you want it – you can always cut it shorter, but can’t add fabric back.  Or you can always walk on the wild side and toss your tape measure aside and just eyeball it!
    • If you are going with a traditional runner spanning the length of your table, but don’t want the runner to hang over the side, the rule of thumb is to cut the length 2/3 the width of your table. 

5) Fray your edges by pulling 3-4 threads off each side

6) Iron any wrinkles out, if necessary


Now dress up your table with any placemats, place settings, or centerpieces you desire and enjoy your new table runner!

 Christine’s Finished Table

 Dawn’s Finished Table

Don’t you just love it when a simple and inexpensive project transforms your home!?!? We do! 




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