Picnic Placemat Tutorial

Hello Everyone! Do you remember going on picnics and using a red and white checkered tablecloth?checkerd tablecloth When I decided to make placemats for my Guild’s service project for Meals on Wheels, I thought it would be fun and summery to make a placemat version of the tablecloth. Well I made four, all from fabric on hand. They were fast and easy to make so I decided to write a tutorial for them. I hope you make your own and if you do, send me pictures or post them on Instagram and tag me @thequiltingnook.



Here are my four. I really didn’t want to give them away, but I did. I especially liked the red one on the bottom. I plan on making some for us using fabric left over from my Whaley project

The placemats are 16″ x 12″.  For each placemat, you’ll need a dark, medium and light. I used fat quarters and some 2 1/2″ strips that I already had cut.  Let’s get started…

Materials for one placemat:

  • dark   2 – 2 1/2″ x 17″ strips
  • medium   4 – 2 1/2″ x 17″ strips
  • light   2 – 2 1/2″ x 17″ strips
  • 18″ x 14″ piece of fabric for backing
  • 18″ x 14″ piece of batting
  • Binding  2 – 2 1/2″ width of fabric for a total of 66″


placemat 1

To make strip sets:

  • sew a medium, dark, medium, dark together
  • sew a light, medium, light, medium together

placemat 2

  • Press seams towards the medium fabric. The sets are 8 1/2″ wide.

placemat 4

  • Cut each strip set into 6 – 2 1/2″ strips. There is enough length to give you a generous clean cut. I used my Creative Grids Stripology Quilt Ruler to make the cuts. This ruler is worth every penny!

placemat 3

I layered my strip sets carefully and cut two sets at a time.

  • Sew 2 – 2 1/2″ x 8 1/2″  medium/dark strips together on the short side making sure that the colors alternate. Repeat two more times.
  • Sew 2 – 2 1/2″ x 8 1/2″ light/medium strips together on the short side making sure that the colors alternate. Repeat two more times.
  • You will have 3 medium/dark strips and 3 light/medium strips

placemat 5

  • Sew 1 medium/dark strip to 1 light/medium strip. Repeat two more times for three sets.

placemat 6

  • Sew the three sets together as shown above.

placemat 7

  • Press the seams open for less bulk.

placemat 11

  • Layer the top, batting and backing. I used my walking foot and quilted in the ditch in all the seams, running off into the batting and sewing to the next seam. That way I was able to do all the quilting in one pass.
  • Sew the binding on in your preferred method. I usually hand sew my binding, but I finished these up on the day they had to be turned in so did this binding by machine. It wasn’t perfect, but not bad either!

placemat 9

placemat 10


placemat 12

These are the other three that I made. I made these in a couple of days while I was working on other things.

I hope you enjoyed the tutorial. Send pictures if you make them and I’ll post them here on the blog. Thanks for stopping by.



This entry was posted in Charity Sewing, Placemats, Tutorials, Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Picnic Placemat Tutorial

  1. Lydia says:

    You make this look so easy!


  2. Michele says:

    I love these. I can see making them for every holiday and season change.


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