Four Pieced Place Mats

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FOUR PIECED PLACE MATS

Cutting

I was able to make these place mats and napkins from my stash.

These four  pieced place mats were fun but difficult to get the corners to  match.  I found a pattern, printed it and tried to put them together, but it didn’t work.  I then took a piece of paper the size I wanted for the finished place mats (mine were 14’X17″ and cut it across diagonally both ways and added a seam allowance when I cut them out. My finished place mats are 13″X 16″.  They turned out to be very attractive.  The center points meet exactly but the corners are not so perfect.  When you are working with triangles you have lot of stretch.  If I do it again I will starch the fabric stiff before I cut it to prevent so much stretching.

Sewing

Just sew the triangles together in any combination you wish.  I made 8 so I could have a bigger dinner with them or have some to trade off for everyday.  They are easy to combine and if the corners don’t match you can trim them.  trimming can cause them to be smaller than you planned though so I opted to just ignore the outer corners and do my best.

Padding

I wanted my place mats to be quilted for absorbency and so that I could practice free motion quilting on my machine.  I used an iron on batting.  It is perfect for these four piece  place mats. Just follow the directions that come with your bat.  it is great to work with.

Backing

The backing irons on to the bat in the same process as the front so it is so easy and neat.

Now you are ready to do the free motion quilting if you like.

This is the perfect project to practice the machine quilting pattern of your choice.  I choose to do a bear claw pattern.  It was easy.  The hard part was learning the coordinate my hands and the foot speed together.  It is like dancing to the music and your partner at the same time.  It takes practice.  It is lots of fun though.

On my last placemat I decided to get the design looking perfect so I went slower to assure accuracy.  It looks great on the top but the bottom is a mess!  That is because if you slow down your hands you have to also slow down the speed on the foot pedal.  You will find your comfortable speed and learn to go with it.

Binding

I cut long strips of 1 3/4″ strips and sewed them all together end to end.  Then I  folded them in half and pressed them that way. Next, you stitch it to the back of the four pieced place mats with the raw side matching the edge.  Then fold the border around to the front of the place mat and the folded edge will be on the top.  Stitch the folded edge down to the front almost the way around, miter the corners your favorite way and  connect the binding before you go all the way around.  Leave about 5 inches undone then you can join them on the diagonal.  there are plenty of videos you can watch on that and connecting the binding together.

Now you have a set of wonderful place mats to match your kitchen or the season.

Napkins

Napkins are fun and easy.  Just use a matching cotton.  Cut 16  14″  to 16″ squares for 8 napkins.  Place 2 squares together wrong sides out.  Sew around them leaving a space about 4 inches to turn the napkin right side out.  Then stitch close to the edge all the way around and again in about 1 1/2 inches to keep them flat.  Make extra napkins so that you can trade them out while you are washing the first set.

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There you have it.  A beautiful way to dress your table for any season.  My guests were very complimentary.  Yours will be too!