Thursday, December 30, 2010

Elmer's Tri-Fold Display Table Runner (#canyoutopthis)

 Can You Top This??
Doesn’t this sound like a dare?
Becca, from Our Crazy Boys, is having a giveaway/contest and this is the theme... Can you top this?
Well, Becca, you challenged us and I accept the challenge!
She wants us to create a masterpiece using this:
That is the only rule.  Use Elmer’s Tri-Fold Display Board.  You can use it any way you want.  You can cut it, sew it, glue it, burn it.... 
You get what I’m saying???
It doesn’t need to look like a display board when you’re done.  
Here’s the prize: She is giving away 3 $100.00 gift certificates to Wal-Mart.  Now she’s totally speaking my language!  MONEY, honey!  

My passion is sewing.  I wanted to incorporate what I know with this board somehow.  It took me a while but finally an idea popped into my head... how about this:
A Designer Table Runner
What I love about this runner is it’s practical while at the same time it's beautiful for our home.  The display board is the “guts” in this masterpiece.  It gives the runner structure. It’s very practical to use on your table because you can put hot dishes right on it;  the board insulates the heat from going to the table!  Since it’s easy to make, you could make several  using different fabrics; you won’t be bored seeing the same thing on your table.  Another great idea is to recycle old table cloths or bedspreads into these table runners.  In addition, you could take these tri-fold boards from other projects and recycle them for this project too.  I love the idea that we can reuse what we already have.  A winning situation for our environment and economic times.
Materials Needed:
Elmer’s Tri-Fold Foam Display Board purchased from Wal-Mart ($7.95)
fabric: 1 yard (36x44)
sewing machine (I’ll share with you how to make it without one too)
tread (either matching or contrasting to fabric choice)
box cutter knife
pencil or marker
masking tape 
iron/ironing board
self healing cutting mat/rotary cutter (optional)

1.) Lay board flat with the folds spread in open position with the shiny side facing up. With a pencil/marker using a ruler, mark the board in half lengthwise. Using the  line as your guide, cut the board using the box cutters. Because I was a bit of a klutz with
the cutter, I taped the cut edge of the board to make it smooth. 

2.) Cut your fabric: 30" wide x 43" long. On one side of the short edge (the width), turn right side of fabric under about 1 inch towards wrong side of fabric. Iron this fold into a nice crease. Now fold your fabric in half (the 30 inch side, making it 15 inches wide by 43 inches long) with right sides of fabric facing each other (so wrong side of fabric is on the outside (pic below). Iron the fabric, making sure there is a nice crease on the folded edge.

3.) Sewing part: This project only requires you to sew two straight  lines. Easy Peasy! With your sewing machine (if you're lucky to own one like me), sew one short end and the open side of the outer edge (opposite of the creased edge) with a 1/2" seam allowance. Remember to back stitch a little to secure the thread. After sewing the two seams, clip the edges like in the picture below and iron seams open. Turn fabric right side out and iron it nicely. Now, you are close to being done!!!

If you don't have a sewing machine, don't worry! You can still make it!
Purchase this:

(picture from Joann's Fabric website)

This can be purchased at Joann's Fabric. I'm sure you can find it elsewhere, just Google it. Follow the directions on the back and use it for the two seam closures listed above. It would be good to practice on old scrape material before using on project. Instead of opening the seams like mentioned when sewing, iron the seam to one side of fabric.
4.) Putting it together. 
     Insert the display board inside the fabric like so:

Now, just take a sewing needle and thread
and sew opening seam close. 

Now you're finished!!!! 
Place on table and admire your work!!!

P.S.  We only used half the board, so now you can make yourself another one!  

I thought the boards would also make wonderful place mats using the same technique.  If you have kids who like to draw, purchase some caulk board fabric and make either project.  They will get a kick out of drawing on it, keeping them busy while you're still preparing dinner.  You can also use it as a table teaching tool: have them draw where the plate and utensils should go on the place mats. 

What I realized while making this project was that once I started letting my imagination stir, I was able to come up with several projects using the display board so really, I'm already a winner!

Thank You, Becca!  I love a good challenge! Bring on the next one....


Mallery said...

I love your project :)

Becca @ Our Crazy Boys said...

I LOVE this!! I think I need to make one... without the sewing machine, of course :)

Keonte' S said...

I honestly would have never thought of this. I love the fabric too. Great post. Thanks for entering.

Kim said...

Thanks everyone for the lovely comments. I love what I made and leave it openly displayed on my table! It's so practical.

Jodi Rall said...

What a creative colorful and cute. I fear that my lack of creativity might get in the way... : )