football table runner
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Football Table Runner Tutorial for Fall

football table runner

This Football Table Runner is a variation of the Touchdown Quilt pattern by Cluck Cluck Sew. It’s an intermediate level quilting pattern, further embellished with pretty quilting stitches.

Finished table runner measures approximately 15 1/2″ x 44 1/2″.

Touchdown football pattern



The pattern designer recommends using only small non-directional prints for this project. This way the fabric prints don’t interfere with the design and/or quilting. If you decide to go rogue and use a directional print, be mindful of the directionality when cutting and piecing.

For this table runner, cut enough brown and white fabric pieces to create 3 football blocks. From the remaining white fabric, cut eight 3 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ rectangles for the pieced borders.

From the background/backing fabric, cut (6) 2″ x 12 1/2″ rectangles, (12) 3″ squares, (6) 2″ x 10 1/2″ rectangles and the 16″ x 45″ rectangle for the back (more if long-arm or end-to-end quilting).

On a flat work surface, plot the fabrics as desired. Align five 3 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ rectangles for each border, with background rectangles between. Once the desired color arrangement/layout is configured, set the machine up for sewing the blocks together.


Install a size 70/10 Universal Needle.

Set the machine for a 2.5mm stitch length.

Load the machine with a thread color that is the lightest neutral that coordinates with the fabrics chosen. The Neutrals & Nutshells palette offers 12 colors that all go with any football table runner! Use the same thread in the bobbin.


Following the pattern guidesheet, piece together the football blocks using a football print for the backgrounds.

piecing football blocks

Join the pieced borders, creating four total. Change the fabric arrangement for each border as desired.

Next, stitch each border to the long edges of each football block.

Once completed, make sure everything is pressed nicely (either with seams pressed open or to one side, depending on preference).


Place the backing rectangle on a flat work surface with the wrong side facing up. Spray the wrong side with KK 2000 in an even layer. Center the batting rectangle over the backing; smooth to adhere.

Next, spray the pieced top wrong side with KK 2000. Center the pieced top right side up over the batting. Smooth flat and adhere the top to the batting. If desired, and if the quilting will not be complete in one sewing session, add a few Wonder Pins to the Football Table Runner quilt sandwich to further secure.


First, install a size 75/11 Quilting Needle.

Choose a few thread colors from the Neutrals and Nutshells thread palette. Begin with the thread chosen to quilt the football blocks. Use the same color thread in the bobbin.

Start at the centermost football block. Set the machine for free-motion stitching by lowering the feed dogs and using a free-motion spring-loaded foot. FMQ (free-motion quilt) the football block as desired.

Switch thread colors and FMQ the centermost pieced borders surrounding the centermost football block.

Continue to FMQ the remaining football blocks and pieced borders.

TIP: If desired, choose an end-to-end quilting design to quilt the table runner entirely in the hoop of your embroidery machine.

Alternatively, install a size 90/14 Quilting Needle and thread it with 30 wt. Blendables Thread. Quilt in the ditch of each pieced seam. Begin with the centermost seam and work outward to either side independently. Or long-arm quilt the piece using a football-themed built-in design (as pictured). The options are endless!

quilting detail on table runner

Once quilting is complete, trim the table runner so the edges are even.


From the binding fat quarter, cut as many 2 1/2″ strips as possible. Piece together the strips along the ends at a 45 degree angle, offsetting the corners to account for a 1/4″ seam allowance. Then, press open each seam.

Fold one binding end 1/4″ toward the wrong side; press.

Fold the binding strip in half lengthwise with wrong sides together; press. Trim the corners that extend beyond the long binding edge.

Beginning with the folded end, use Wonder Clips to secure the binding to the table runner edges. At the corners, fold the strip up over itself and then back down along the adjacent edge to create a mitered corner.

When you reach the binding beginning, overlap the end 3″ beyond the folded end; clip in place, and then trim the excess binding.

Stitch the binding to the table runner along the raw edges. At each corner, stop stitching 1/4″ from the edge; backstitch. Remove the work from under the presser foot and reposition the miter fold if necessary. Rotate the work, and then begin stitching 1/4″ from the fold to the next corner. Repeat until the table runner binding is stitched.

football table runner binding

Hand sew the binding beginning fold to the binding using a slipstitch or ladder stitch.

Wrap the binding around the table runner edge toward the backing. Use Wonder Clips to secure. At each corner, check to ensure the miters are perfectly folded. Fold one corner edge toward the back, and then follow with the other to create a nice miter on the backing.

Hand sew the binding fold and corner joins to the table runner backing using a slipstitch or ladder stitch.

table runner with thread

Looking for more football table runner inspiration? Check out the paper pieced Mix and Match Table Runner pattern by National Quilter’s Circle. Get it free by entering your email address.  Don’t forget to grab a pack of Sulky Paper Solvy to make quick work of the paper removal! The Neutrals & Nutshells 50 wt. Cotton Thread Sampler works for this pattern, too!
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I am the Director of Content for Sulky of America. The former Editor in Chief of Sew News and Creative Machine Embroidery magazines, I hosted Sew it All TV on PBS for nine seasons. I've appeared on It's Sew Easy on PBS, DIY Network's Uncommon Threads, Hallmark's Marie Osmond Show, MacPhee Workshop and more! Come sew with me!


    • Ellen March

      Hi Betty,
      We had a problem with our blog publisher posting incorrect dates. This was actually first posted when you received the notification. Thank you for bringing it to our attention.