8 Things You Already Own That Can Double As Table Runners

8 Things You Already Own That Can Double As Table Runners

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Sarah Rae Smith
Nov 23, 2010

Since moving into our new place we've been using two hollow core doors to make a large tabletop. That's all fine and dandy until it comes time to make them look all gussied up for the holidays. Traditional tablecloths aren't large enough so I busted out an oversized fabric panel/curtain/bed cover but it looks like exactly that. It's dying for a runner so here's 7 quick things that will get the job done without buying anything else!

1. Brown Kraft Paper - If I was stranded on a deserted island and could only bring two things with me, brown paper would be one of them (I'm only half way kidding). Brown kraft paper can be bought in any size imaginable online or from local retailers, but my trusted source is always the hardware store. You can always find a large roll intended for painters to put down for right around $10. Since I always have it on hand, it's always the first thing I try! If you don't have a roll, invest in one! If you want to make it fancy, sew ribbon or embellishments on the edge like in the photo above.

2. Sheets - Your linens can be of great value when setting a table. To make them appear less like something you sleep on and more like something you eat on, try busting out the iron and trying to fold them different ways. Iron them in place on your table top if your surface can tolerate the heat and you won't even have to fuss with an ironing board!

3. Curtains - So you have curtains over your basement windows. Will anyone really notice if you take them down, wash them and put them on the tabletop? Probably not. You'll want to be more cautious with stains, so make sure you have a standby kit prepared just in case!

4. Parchment/Freezer Paper - Many of us have a roll or two of parchment or freezer paper hanging out in the back of your kitchen drawer. If you're not an avid baker, there's a good chance those rolls are still pretty full. Run them down the table and things will instantly improve. Jazz things up by adding a decorative edge to things with a craft punch or even standard hole punch!

5. Mother Nature - Try heading outdoors and picking weeds, branches or flowers if you still have any. Put them side by side to create a thick band down the table in which food can be placed upon. Double up the look and put two rows side by side all the way down the table and you'll make quite a statement!

6. Scrap Fabric - Don't even worry about the sewing machine, just lay all your scraps down together. They don't have to match, heck, they don't even have to coordinate. We're sure you can bring in a color or two in which to tie things together with an accent piece down the road. Feel the love for the patchwork and no one will know it wasn't your intended look! (Don't have scrap fabric? Try going through your clothes to see what can be cut up that was headed to the donation pile anyway!)

7. Spare Tile - Ok, so not everyone has a box of spare tile hanging out in your basement, garage or storage area, but if you've ever done anything with it, you know you always have extra and parting with it seems silly. Lay the pieces end to end and add your decorations, easy peasy!

8. Ribbon and String - Forget about the idea of making a thick band of something going down your table and instead lay down string, thread, embroidery floss or whatever else you have laying around in your craft pile that would work. Just lay pieces side by side and it will look like a thick banded runner even though it's multiple pieces of string!

• Check out the tutorial for making the beautiful paper and ribbon table runner pictured above over at 100 Layer Cake, it's a most impressive look on a small budget!

What have you used in a pinch to make your table look a little snazzier? Share your secret in the comments below!

Image: 100 Layer Cake

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