Tuesday, July 26, 2011

montessori style applique placemats

and I must have been bitten by the same bug. No, not the mosquito, but I have plenty of those bites too.

The sewing bug has me making things at my machine. I am generally a very slow knitter, but I really enjoy it. I am much quicker at sewing and my projects come out with much fewer mistakes, but I do feel more stress at the machine than sitting with a pair of knitting needles. There is probably some life lesson to learn through each one.

I am almost finished with a project i have had in my head for years. As I attempt to teach table manners to my boys, setting the table has become one of their daily responsibilities. I thought it would be great to have an attractive placemat that would give them reminders of where each item belongs. I found the plain placemats at the grocery store on sale for 25cents each, after thanksgiving. The fabric came from scraps in my stash. I used iron on applique adhesive. I used both wonder under and steam-a-seam. I would recommend the steam-a-seam as it was much easier to work with, but it does come in small packets, but the wonder under comes by the yard. I also didnt try the wonder under heavy duty weight, it may be much better.

After attaching my applique pieces, I zigzagged (is that a word?) the edges with a contrasting thread color. This is both for decoration and as a back up to the applique adhesives, because lets face it, my boys are not delicate with tableware. :)

I finished it off by handsewing with embroidery floss a fork, knife, and spoon. This is honestly the hardest part and the part I have yet to finish. The placemats are stiff and thick and it takes some muscle to get the thread through. Another option would be to use fabric markers or to just not put the cutlery pictures on the placemat.

I hope to finish soon, but this one has been bumped back in the queue by another fun summer sewing project that I am so excited to finish. More on that later. . .


  1. Hooray! I love them! And that reminds me of a now infamous comment made here a couple of weeks ago by a young visitor. She said, "Whoa! In your house the kids get to set the table?" Apparently, they get to set the table in your house, too.

  2. Love them Monica! Great work. Glad to see you're taking time to sew.

  3. That looks great! Love it! Our kids set the table too but the older ones have taught the younger ones so I don't know if I need to do the outlines. A shame because they're so cute. (: