How To Make A No Sew Burlap Table Runner For Fall

How to make a table runner from burlap the no sew method. Also directions for washing, drying, and cutting burlap.
I’m in love with this patterned burlap that I found on the clearance rack at Hobby Lobby. It caught my eye as I was cruisin the fabric department. There was only 3 yards left on the bolt so I purchased it all, and knew I would find somewhere to use it. Since painting my doors gray I have been incorporating more of that color into other decorating items, and the dark grey in this burlap looks perfect with my fall vignettes.
First I washed and dried the burlap. Make sure you wash it alone, burlap sheds terribly and you don’t want all those fibers sticking to your other items. I washed mine in cold water to avoid any fading and used the rapid cycle. I used a small amount of detergent and vinegar in the rinse cycle. For some reason burlap always reminds me of being at the stockyards as a kid. It just brings back memories of buying cattle and all the smells associated with farming. Next throw it in the dryer on medium heat, the wrinkles won’t set in to bad as long as you don’t have it on hot. Once it’s dry, drag it outside and shake it like crazy until all the tiny fibers quit falling from it. I found it worked best to stand on our second story deck and let the fabric hang over the rail to give it a good shake. It’s hard to keep 3 yards off the ground, and being up higher worked much better.
Next I ironed the burlap. I added a few drops of orange essential oil to my steamer to help disguise the burlap smell, and it worked beautifully. The house smelled like simmering orange peels and the burlap smelled delightful. Then I placed the burlap on my dining table to decide what size to make the runner. I decided 20 inches wide would be perfect and of course cut the length to fit your table. The easiest way to get a straight cut with burlap is to make a small cut with your scissors and then pull one strand of the fibers. It will create a channel that you can visibly see and that is where you place your scissors for cutting. If the fiber breakes while pulling just grab the end with at toothpick and continue to pull. I did this on all 4 sides and then pulled 6 strands out all the way around to give it a Pottery Barn fringed look. It’s such an easy project to do, what takes the most time is the washing, drying, and ironing.
m not sure what it is about burlap but my cat loves to roll on it. Maybe it’s the scratchy feel it has to it. Oh, and by the way my garden is still producing those beautiful sunflowers. I think I have about 2 more cuttings before the frost gets them. I hate to even say this word, but SNOW is being predicted here in the next two weeks. Yikes, I sure hope we won’t totally skip over Fall, it’s my favorite season of the year.
Dawn @ Creative Cain Cabin
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  • Debbie Slick Debbie Slick on Nov 29, 2014
    I am so very allergic to burlap and am wondering what to do to take away that smell so I can buy some and decorate. Any help?

    • @Debbie Slick I use lavender oil in my iron when I steam it to take away the smell, not sure if that would work for you or not.

  • Kathy Kathy on Sep 25, 2019

    Thank you. I did not know to wash and dry burlap.