Lacy Table Runner | Machine Embroidery Designs | Urban Threads - Print

Lacy Table Runner

This season, I wanted to make a table runner that had a Halloween vibe to it without being too cheesy. Elegant designs with overlapping flourishes and some black lace trim make this the perfect addition to chic haunted decor without going overboard on the monsters and pumpkins. This tutorial will show you how to achieve that classic Halloween feel with easy-to-follow steps. And although the final runner size in this example finished at around 72 inches long, it’s easy to customize these steps for your own table needs.


To craft your embroidered table runner, you will need:

  • Ghoulishly delightful designs, we used designs in a variety of sizes from The Laboratory collection
  • Main fabric. At least 14 inches wide by however long your table is. To make a runner just like this one, you'll need fabric to be roughly 74 inches long.
  • Backing fabric the same size (it can be the same fabric, or something contrasting)
  • Medium weight cutaway stabilizer
  • Temporary spray adhesive
  • Scissors and pins
  • Printed templates of your designs, to help with placement (here's how to print templates)
  • 7 yards of lace trim (for a table runner the example size)
  • Air-erase fabric marker

Products Used

  • The Laboratory - Bat (Sku: ESP11565-1)
  • The Laboratory - Delicate Skull (Sku: ESP11575-1)
  • The Laboratory - Spider (Sku: ESP11566-1)
  • The Laboratory - Skull (Sku: ESP11567-1)
  • The Laboratory - Wolf (Sku: ESP11570-1)
  • The Laboratory - Raven (Sku: ESP11571-1)
  • The Laboratory - Delicate Corner (Sku: ESP11572-1)

Steps To Complete

I selected a fabric that had little to no stretch to make it easier to work with, and a neutral color to help the designs I chose “pop” more. The largest Delicate Skull design was chosen to create a “running pattern,” which would act as a background for the more colorful large Skull and smaller WolfRavenBat and Spider designs on top. The light running stitch elements in each of these designs will help you overlap them gracefully for a more uniform combination.

When cutting your fabric, leave at least one inch of extra edge on either side for the seam. In this example I wanted my final dimensions to be 72”x12”; so I cut 2 panels of my fabric at 73”x13”. One to put my main embroidery on, and the other as the back panel of my runner.

You can design your runner however you like, but I thought it would be best if the runner had a focal point in the center.

I positioned The Laboratory Skulls mirroring each other at the center of the runner. In order for the text to not get messed up on the mirrored design, I’ll be skipping the "Alchemy" text on each.

To create a background running pattern; evenly space the Delicate Skull & Crossbones designs repeating on either side of the center focus. To fill out the full 72 inch runner, repeat these delicate skull & crossbones designs repeated on either side. These running stitch only designs are great for creating a “background” layer you can add on top of with other, more bold designs.

To fill the open space left above the Skulls, I decided to mirror the Delicate Corner Moons just like I did with the skulls, and add the Wolf design over the moons, centering his face in the middle. This will keep a balanced look throughout your runner.

Because we’ll be adding a thick lace trim to the edge of this later, be sure to keep your designs at least 1.5 inches away from the edge of your fabric -- otherwise they’ll get partially covered by the lace trim at the end.

I recommend stitching the center embroidery to get your runner started, and then test layouts of further designs as you go along.

Use printed templates to help place and mark your fabric, if you need a reminder on printing templates, click here. Use medium weight cutaway stabilizer adhered to the back of your fabric with temporary spray adhesive and hoop up your first design. Don’t forget on this design to skip the large text so it’s not backwards when we mirror the next one!

Also, make sure to hoop the fabric the way that the design will sew out. For example, if the design sews out sideways; I place the fabric in the hoop so it will sew out in the correct direction.

Here’s my first set of designs stitched out. You can now keep building out from this symmetrical centerpiece!

For the rest of your designs, feel free to place them layered on top of the delicate skulls all over your runner. You can continue the pattern of symmetry, or go wild outside of the balanced centerpiece.

As you continue to add more embroidery, make sure you keep the extra length of your table runner rolled up and out of the way, so you don’t accidentally stitch it to itself. Use hair clips or pins if needed.

Because, c’mon, we all know we’ve done that at least once.

Now we just need to cut the ends of the runner into a smooth curved shape to give it a more finished look.

To easily add round edges; fold your fabric in half together and use a dinner plate to trace a nice smooth curve. If the plate doesn’t meet the edge perfectly; just taper it gently to the edge.

Once you have this curved edge on your embroidered fabric piece, use it as a template to trace and add a curve to your backing fabric too, so they match up perfectly.

In preparation of adding the lace trim, mark the border 0.5 inches away from the edge all the way around your fabric.

Also, before moving to far into the next step, trim away any excess stabilizer that’s poking more than a 0.5 inch out of the edge of your fabric.

Now, for the trim!

Start pinning your lace trim in place along your marked line, all around the edge of your runner. To sew your trim on, use matching thread to sew the bottom edge of the lace to the runner.

Continue pinning your lace in place all around the edges, taking special care around the curved ends.

It helps to start in the middle of your project and work your sewing all the way around.

Next, you'll need to attach the back side of your runner. Find the center of each fabric panel, match them up, and pin them face to face, right sides in.

Finally, start sewing a 0.5 inch seam all around your fabric, making sure to leave at least a 6 inch opening to turn your runner right side out again! Remember to back tack your first and last stitches.

Through the opening you left, flip your runner right side out again. Press the runner flat (use a pressing cloth if you are worried about melting your fabric or embroidery thread).

Stitch your opening up carefully to finish out the runner.

Your runner is ready to add some spooky glamour to your haunted decor!