March 31, 2009

A Placemat Tutorial....

This is a quick project you can whip up for yourself or a friend. I used some fat quarters I had lying around but you could also piece together the top of your placemat with scraps if you wanted to. The possibilities are quite endless but the best part is that they are super easy. So beginners and novices get your rotary cutters and sewing machines ready to go.

First thing you need to do is cut out your fabric and batting. It is pretty easy to do because all you need is 1-14 x 18 inch piece of batting and 2-14 x 18 inch pieces of fabric for each placemat you want to make.

Then you are going to sew around the entire perimeter of the placemat (with a 1/2 inch seam allowance) leaving a few inches on one of the long sides open for turning. Remember to leave your needle down when you have reached a corner before lifting up your foot on the machine. This will ensure that you get a nice clean corner.

Next you have to cut the corners off so that when you turn it inside out there isn't a whole lot of bulk.

Then I like to trim away the batting that is left in the seam allowance. This also helps to keep the bulk to a minimum. As you can see in the picture I did leave the part where the opening is alone. This is because I have found it easier to close the hole later on.

Now it is time to turn your placemat inside out through the hole.

It will end up looking like this.

Pin the opening closed.

Sew all around the placemat 1/8 of an inch from the edge. Take pins out as you sew shut the opening.

Here you can see the corner of my placemat with the 1/8 inch border sewn in.

Next comes the quilting! You can quilt how every you desire. I wanted to stipple mine (meaning just an overall random quilting). You will need a darning foot. Mine has a metal loop though I know they also come with plastic see through loops. Remember to lower your feed dogs as well so that you are the one moving the placemat around underneath the needle.

* An alternative way to quilt your placemat could be to leave a walking foot on your machine and sew in a rectangular spiral. It gives a different look but also can have a pretty effect.

Here is a glimps of a corner all quilted up.

Here are all 4 placemants that I created for this set. Easy peasy!! Hope you like creating your own placemats. Please let me know if I can make anything more clear for you.

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