Thursday, May 7, 2015

Make your own reversible Placemats - Tutorial

These are easy and very satisfying to make; it's just straight accurate sewing and you can use up any gorgeous fabric or material you have lying around.  I made 2 different versions.

This one was my first attempt and I used some neutral but embossed fabric and backed it with fake leather.  I made it up as I went along, but here is how I tackled it:

Cut 6 or 8 or 10 (depending on how many placemats you need, obviously) rectangles from both top fabric and fake leather (or other fabric) for the underside; measuring 45 cms x 35 cms (17½ ins  x 13½ ins); incorporating a 1cm ( or ½ inch)  seam all around.  

Pin your pieces together right sides facing, and sew all around the edge, leaving a small gap (13 cms/ 5 inches) on one of the long sides for turning.   

I added a small piece of double-sided tape to the wrong side, to aid the leather to stick to itself when turning

Trim all the corners and the leather seam to reduce bulk and turn right side out. Carefully poke out the corners using a knitting needle and GENTLE pressure - you don't want to ruin your work by poking through the corners!

If you have used leather, this part is tedious but necessary, because you can't use your iron to get a sharp edge - it will melt the leather:  Gently ease out the seams all around and pin them ready for top-stitching. Clamp or pin the opening together.

Top-stitch close to the edge all around the placemat and again 1cm in from the edge to give a finished look.

I needed to use my pliers to pull the pins out of the leather as I top-sewed!

Below is the second version using two coordinated fabrics.  The process was much easier without the leather and you can get a better look at how I accomplished the top-stitching in this version.  I applied fusible interfacing to the wrong side of one of the fabrics to add some body to the placemat which worked extremely well, see pic here.

Like me, you may like to Scotchguard the fabrics (not the leather) once you're done.

Please leave a comment if you like what you see, or send me pics of your Placemats.  I am happy to answer any and all questions about this process.  

Happy sewing.
the Flash

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