Exciting!! Some time ago I was invited to take part in the Hillarys Craft Competition again! I took part last year too – you can read about my entry here.
First you have to select your fabric, I chose the Daisy Pistachio, It was quite hard to decide what to make as I really wanted to incorporate the reverse side into my design. I spent quite a while thinking about what would be useful at this time of year, ie summer! I really love taking lunch out into the countryside but one thing which always bothers me is having to eat lunch on dirty picnic tables and how to keep crisps from blowing away and fruit from rolling away on our typical British summer day and our ‘rustic’ ie wobbly countryside picnic tables!
My daisy fabricIt’s a very silky, tactile fabric and the reverse side is pretty cool too!
The reverse side of the Daisy Pistachio fabric choice
So here is my idea using some hessian I already had! I have made picnic mats for me and my husband and think I can get about 3 or 4 more out of the Daisy fabric, just need more hessian or any similar fabric
Finished Picnic Mat!
I cut two pieces of hessian to make fairly large sized placemats. The size is completely up to whatever you feel is right for you and your family.
I thought the reverse side would make a good pocket for the cutlery !
Pocket pinned and waiting to be sewed in position
To get round the food blowing/rolling away idea I made a fabric bowl from an idea from my Patchwork class teacher. It’s a very simple and quick way to make a pretty fabric container.
You put a large circular object on your fabric and draw round it. I used the lid of my sewing box!
Lid of my sewing box
Gathering the sides of the bowl up with tacking stitches
You can line the bowl and even use interfacing to stiffen the fabric but with this fabric there was no need to interface and I wanted the cool lining on show!
A quick round of large tacking stitches are sewn round the edge of the fabric and then drawn up (like you do with curtains) and it magically brings up the circle into a bowl shape!I To keep the shape and size I pinned the gathers and then cut a 4inch strip of the fabric to bind the top. As it is a curved edge to bind I cut the fabric at a 45 degree angle using my 6×12 inch ruler. If you are unsure about binding there are so many tutorials to google I haven’t gone into detail for this bit.
You do need to keep the gathers in place with pins or clips whilst you get the binding into position.
Wonder clips are great for keeping thick fabric in place instead of pins!
Place the two pieces of hessian right sides together with the cutlery pocket and bowl in the middle
Completing the mat is just like any other two sided mat or table runner – place right sides together and sew all round the edges and then turn right sides out through the little gap you remembered to leave on one side! I left about a 6 inch gap to ensure I could get the bowl through!
If you want to make a tie for keeping the mat neatly rolled up then make this from a 3 or 4 inch wide strip of fabric. Folding each side into the middle and then folding the whole thing in half lengthwise so that there are no raw edges on show. Sew it lengthwise and then fold it in half and insert it between the two pieces of hessian at the side of the bowl. The folded edge goes in the seam with the two lengths of the tie laying towards the middle of the mat.
Folding the 3 inch strip sides inwards then in half lengthwise to make a tie strip. No need to iron it with this pliable fabric!
If everything has worked you should have a two sided mat sewn together with your cutlery pocket and bowl on the top and you ties at one side!
Picnic mat ready for use – no need to get your lunch near that messy table!
Ready for lunch!
Finished Picnic Mat!
Squashing the bowl prior to rolling up the mat!
Rolled up with cutlery and bowl inside
Nifty eh? 😃
All I need now is some warm weather!
To check out the other entries either click the Hillarys Craft Competition link or go to Pinterest and check out the board!