Thursday, December 24, 2015

Because the project list was too short?

I’m in the middle of quilting a tree skirt (newsflash: it won’t under this year’s tree!), also halfway through quilting the blue snowflake quilt, and I have two other tops I planned to quilt before the end of 2015, and I’m very close to finishing hand quilting my son’s quilt.

So of course I had to go work on something completely new!

Not sure why some photos are insisting on loading sideways...

 My current Christmas placemats were beginning to look a bit the worse for wear, so I bought this pretty poinsettia print last month to make some new ones.  It just sat around decorating my sewing room for the season until I decided how to use it, then sat around a little longer while I pondered what fabric to pair it with.

I settled on the 10-minute table runner (you can do a search for that and find lots of tutorials) though it took me longer than 10 minutes to make.  I added trim between the borders and the center, and top stitching to help keep seams flat after washing.  Still quick, but it took longer than I anticipated.  Then again, what doesn’t?

I wanted the poinsettia print to do most of the work in the placemats, and I wanted to use the other two fabrics from the runner to tie in to the runner.  Here’s what I came up with:

I took notes and pictures to remember how to make them again and to share the process here.

Christmas Placemat Tutorial

For each placemat I used:
  • 1 – 13” x 18.5” rectangle of poinsettia print
  • 1 – 13” x 18.5” rectangle of backing fabric
  • 1 – 2” x 14” strip of gold for the diagonal strip
  • 2 – 3/4” x 14” strips of striped accent fabric 

Step 1. Sew one accent strip to each side of the gold strip.  (I missed a picture of this, sorry!).  Press the seams towards the accent strips.

Step 2. Measure and mark 9 1/4” from the top left corner along the top and left side of the print rectangle, then cut from one mark to the other.

Step 3.  Sew the gold strip set to the largest print piece, centering it along the diagonal cut.  Open and press the seam towards the print.

Step 4.  Sew the print triangle to the other side of the gold strip set, matching centers.  Press the seam towards the print.

Step 5.  Trim the piece back into a rectangle measuring 13” x 18.5”".  The top of your placemat is finished.

Step 6.   I wanted my placemats to be thin to layer over a tablecloth, so I chose not to add batting to quilt them. I also didn’t want to use binding, so I finished the placemats by sewing the front and back together right sides together all around the sides, leaving an opening on one side, then turning the piece right side out through the opening.  I clipped the corners of the seam allowance to reduce bulk in the corners.

**If you want to add batting, layer batting, then backing (right side up), then top (wrong side up) and proceed as in step 6. **

Step 7.  Press placemat, making crisp edges all around and pressing the fabric in the side opening to match.  Top stitch about 1/8” from the edge all around the placemat.  This will close the opening as well as keep the edges pressed when you wash the placemats.

Step 8. Top stitch in the ditch between the thin accent strips and the gold, and between the accent strips and the poinsettia print.  This will help the seams stay flat when you wash the placemats.

That’s it!  Now I need to go fill a few plates with Christmas goodies to set on the Christmas placemats!  I need to go find the greenery and candle centerpiece too…


  1. Oh wow - that looks terrific! I really like how you let the print fabric be the feature yet added that band of stripe fabric. I guess it's not how many projects you have on the list but when inspiration strikes making the most of your enthusiasm for that project at that time. Merry Christmas !

  2. Merry Christmas! Your table looks great. I never thought to make the place mats that way... will try that on my next set. Thanks! I didn't get my quilt finished by Christmas... life got in the way with a unexpected trip to Vermont and then sick in bed for 2 days.

  3. I completely understand - inserting a project! Oh, yes!! They are very pretty and a nice quick project that can be used every Christmas. Even though I have quite a few Christmas decorations, I am always tempted to make (or buy) more. Hee Hee! Have a wonderful day!

  4. Beautiful! I particularly like the table runner. I just don't see how you have time to sew so much this time of year. I hope you are having a wonderful Christmas Day with your family. ---"Love"

  5. I love this set and how you added the striped trim piece. Thanks for sharing and have a happy new year!

  6. Very pretty placemat and runner set - and a helpful little tutorial too :-) I hope you had a lovely christmas and have a happy 2016 too. And good luck with getting your other projects done!

  7. Thanks for sharing these. They are beautiful and elegant.


Thank you for visiting. I truly appreciate your comments and will try to reply to comments by email if your commenting staus is not set to "no-reply".

If you have a question, emailing me directly at will ensure I have your address to respond. I promise I will not share your email address and I will not use it for any purpose other than replying to your message.