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How to Sew a Place Mat: Easy Home Project

We fell in love with bright yellow lemons on navy blue so much that we made two beautiful home decor projects in this color scheme – this lovely organizer basket and this cute pillowcase. In today’s blog, we will show you how to sew a decorative table mat. We thought it would look nice on your nightstand, desk, or any other piece of furniture you would like to decorate. We will use the same navy blue outdoor fabric we used for the other two projects and decorate it with adorable little lemons. On top of that, we will make it reversible, so we will mix and match colors. Let’s begin!

What You Will Need:

  1. Cotton fabric in two colors to make a reversible mat.

  2. Lace, patches, embellishments of your choice.

  3. Matching thread, scissor, measuring tape, ruler (90-degree angle)

  4. Sewing machine.

Step 1: Build Your Pattern

This project has an easy pattern, so we are going to build it right on the fabric. If you would like to make multiple mats, you can build your pattern on paper or cardboard and use it multiple times. We decided to make a square mat, so we will build an 18’’ x 18’’ square. You can make it rectangular if you wish, and you can choose any size. Just remember to use ½’’ on each side for seam allowance.

When you build your pattern, use the 90-degree angle ruler to check all angles. This way you will make sure that your angles are straight, and you build the right shape.

Step 2: Cut Out Your Fabric

Since we need two pieces for our reversible mat, we will place our blue fabric with a built pattern on top of the yellow fabric. Carefully pin the two layers so they don’t move when you cut out the shape. Take your scissors and cut out your project following the pattern lines. When you cut, your scissors should touch the surface – don’t try to cut in the air.

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Step 3: Time to Decorate

If you decided to add something extra to your lovely placemat, now is the time to do it.

  1. Choose your lace, beads or embroidery style (or any other type of embellishment that you like) and select that piece of the mat that you wish to decorate.

  2. Embellishment goes before you assemble the mat. So, if you want to stitch on some patches, you need to add them first and then you can stitch the two pieces of your mat together.

  3. If you have some fabric patches like our lemons, you can use a zigzag stitch to sew them on.

Step 4: Assemble Your Placemat

Once you are done with the embellishments, you can finally stitch the two parts of the placemat together.

  1. First, you can draw a sewing line on one of the pieces for your convenience. Take a ruler and a piece of chalk and draw a line ½’’ from the raw edge. Leave a 5’’ area in the middle of one side that won’t have a line. This way you will indicate where your opening will be. This opening is especially important as you will need to turn your mat inside out.

  2. Second, place the two pieces of your placemat together. Their right sides should face each other.

  3. Finally, align the edges of these two parts and pin them together.

  4. When everything is pinned, you can go ahead and sew them together with your sewing machine. Remember that you need to keep that 5’’ opening unstitched!

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We use a basic stitch (#1 on the Brother Project Runway sewing machine) and keep it at length 3.5 as we use a heavy-duty fabric for this project. Don’t forget about security stitches at the beginning and the end of your stitch! Also, it is important to pivot in the corners: when you reach a corner, leave your needle inside of the fabric, lift the presser foot, rotate the fabric, and keep sewing.

Step 5: Final Steps

You are almost there! After you have stitched the two sides of the mat together, you need to carefully snip the corners. This will help you make them sharper. When you snip the corners, make sure to do that before your stitch line. Don’t cut off the stitch line – it will make a whole in your mat.

Turn your beautiful project inside out and push out the corners really well so they are nice and sharp. Press it with a hot iron and topstitch all the way around to close the gap. Topstitch as close to the edge as possible.

Congratulations! Your placemat is ready, and you have created a full home decor collection. We hope you enjoyed it!

How to Sew a Place Mat

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