I made this set of picnic placemats from the directions in Lotta Jansdotter’s Simple Sewing, with my own twist: oilcloth!
The placemat has three little pockets for silverware, and a tie to roll it up when not in use.
I used a glossy oilcloth on the top, so that the placemats could be wiped easily. For the back, I used Joel Dewberry’s very cool wood-grain fabric.
They were perfect for our vacation in Napa, but I also plan to use mine every day for lunch. They’ll keep my table clean, and also perk me up when it’s rainy outside.
If you decide to make your own, I’ve got a great oilcloth tip: if your oilcloth is getting stuck under your presser foot, simply place a piece of paper over the cloth! Your presser foot will slide right over the paper, and when you’re done sewing, just peel the paper off. (A big thank-you to the ladies at Pacific Fabrics for giving me this tip, and saving me from using too many swear words.)