Monday, July 22, 2013

Tutorial: Wonky Star Table Topper

Have you ever made wonky stars? If you like the idea but haven't tried it, we've got the tutorial for you! Dawn Stewart of Spring Water Designs is here today, sharing her tutorial for a summery red, white and blue table topper for your picnic table featuring fun, wonky stars. 
They're simple to make, and addicting, too!
After you've read through Dawn's tutorial, be sure to visit her blog to see how you can enter to win a giveaway of these red and blue fabrics to make your own runner!

Hi!  I'm Dawn Stewart visiting from Spring Water Designs and I've been having a good time playing with these beautiful reds and blues from the Roses are Red and Indigo Blues fabric collections from Fabri-Quilt! Plus a little white thrown in :)

I've been feeling really patriotic this summer because I've been taking part in the Stitching History project where a group of stitchers sponsored by the Maryland Historical Society have set out this summer to recreate the original  30 foot by 42 foot (hand stitched) Star Spangled Banner to mark the 200th anniversary of it's making.  (You can get some information and progress updates on my blog.)

So I decided to take these somewhat traditional prints and use them to make a Summer Celebration Table Topper with happy little modern wonky stars! It measures approximately 21" x 36".

Here are the fabrics that you'll need:
1/4 yard each from assorted Reds & Blues (I used 7 reds & 7 blues)
      From these cut: (24) 3-1/2" red squares, and (24) 3-1/2" blue squares
                                (12) 3-1/2" red squares cut in half diagonally = (24) red triangles
                                (16) 3-1/2" blue squares cut in half diagonally = (32) blue triangles
1/2 yard white
      From the white cut: (63) 2-1/2" squares
                                      (2) 2" x 18-1/2" strips
                                      (2) 3-1/2" x 9-1/2" rectangles
1/2 yard red for binding
1 yard large print red for backing

Now, let's make some happy little stars!  These will each measure 6-1/2" before sewing them into our table topper.  First, make one star with all red print star points.

Position a red print triangle right sides together with a 2-1/2" white background square, so that when stitched and pressed out the red will cover one corner of the white background square.  Change the angle slightly on each one to create the wonky effect.  Sew using a 1/4" seam allowance.

 Then press them out over the corner that they will cover...

Turn them over to expose the entire white background square and cut away the excess red fabric that extends beyond the white background square.

 See how from the front side all the star points are different and wonky ~ this random look is what we're going for. (Optional: You can choose to trim away the white background fabric that lays behind the red star points to eliminate bulk.)

Sew four more red triangles in the same manner as before to a neighboring corner on each unit.  Overlap each one differently for the wonky look.  Again press and trim just like before.

 Arrange the pieces and sew together in rows much like a nine patch block to complete the star.

 Next make two stars that have all blue star points...

Then make four that have red and blue alternating star points.

To create the center of the table topper, sew the two blue stars to either side of the red star.  Then sew a 2" white strip to the top and bottom.

Next lay two red and two blue 3-1/2" squares right sides together over the 3-1/2" x 9-1/2" white rectangles.  Draw a diagonal line from corner to corner on the back of the colored squares as shown above.

 Sew on the drawn lines and then trim away leaving approx. a 1/4" seam allowance.

 Press the colored corners out.

 Sew the red cornered unit to the left side of the star center and the blue unit to the right side.

Next you'll create the pieced borders by arranging the remaining red and blue 3-1/2" squares alternating red and blue as shown above.  (When piecing the blocks, I pressed all toward the blue blocks to help the seam allowances to nest nicely.)

Make two long borders that are 8 squares wide by 2 high, and two end borders that are 2 squares wide by 3 high.  Sew the pieced long borders to the top and bottom of the center, pressing toward the borders.  Then sew the four red/blue star units to each end of the two pieced shorter end border units, again pressing toward the borders.  Then sew these to the ends of your table runner.

Layer with a thin batting and the backing fabric and quilt together.  Bind with red.

I hope you enjoy your Summer Celebration Table Runner!
Enjoy the day!
~ Dawn

Be sure to head over to Dawn's blog to see how you can enter to win a fat quarter bundle of red and blue fabrics like she used!


  1. Thats so pretty. Love those patriotic looking colors.

  2. Oh how lovely! This is next on my to-make list.

  3. I am loving these wonky stars.

  4. I like your patriotic table runner. Oh and I am an email subscriber to fabriquiltblog. That's how I learned of your tutorial and giveaway.

  5. Great tute, and really cute! Love the design and the fabrics.

  6. Love the Wonky Stars...perfect in red, white and blue!

  7. Wonderful wonky stars. Love the design and fabrics!

  8. I love the look of Wonky Stars and I see how simple it can be!! That will be on my To Do List... a table runner is a perfect project!! Thanks!