I don’t mean graphic as in R-rated, but graphic as in bold patterns and colors!
There are some days when I daydream about having an all-white kitchen – white cabinetry, white countertops, white tile floors… and today is one of them. Can you image how fun and energized an all-white kitchen would look with pops of these plates, platters and teapots? Gah! Is it too late to change out our maple and cherry for white, white, white, white?
As mentioned in my List-O-Mania post, one “to-do” item is to have my piano moved from my parent’s house to our house.
the piano will go here, up against the stairs in our family room
But before we can do that, we need a rug to go underneath it.
I was originally planning to bind a leftover swatch of our carpeting. I figured this would do a good enough job. And it would be free. (well sort of; the carpet would be free but we’d still have to pay to have it bound). But the more I thought about it, the more I doubted that a carpet swatch was the way to go. Our carpeting is kind of a non-descript oatmeal-y color (as you can see above on the stairs). Perfectly neutral for the rest of our home, but maybe the piano deserves more pizzazz.
But now I was stumped. What type of rug should I look for? What would go best with the room? How could we add a little pop of color or pattern without overwhelming the rest of the room?
Until one day, when I found this beauty in a Land of Nod catalogue!
It’s the perfect size (4′ x 6′).
… and the kicker…
And it’s on it’s way to our house now! FedEx – please get my little lavender beauty here safe and sound!
The first plans I had for my new batch of fabric were new placemats for our kitchen table. Our current placemats are a basic navy-ish blue; they don’t really match our dishes, or anything else in our kitchen, for that matter. I thought some fun yellow-patterned placemats would be just the thing to brighten up the kitchen.
As I’ve said before, I’m not really talented when it comes to sewing – my mom is. But with all of these new ideas swirling in my head, I wanted to give it a shot. The last time I sat down to a sewing machine was probably sometime in 2001 or 2002, when I took Home Ec in high school (yes, my all-girls Catholic high school still offered Home Ec). But placemats seemed easy enough for a beginner! And my mom is a willing teacher (thanks Mom!).
My mom and I studied the fabric’s pattern (Suzani Slub in yellow/white by Premier Prints) and compared various dimensions to decide how big we wanted our placemats to be. We decided a 13″ x 17″ double-sided rectangle would be the best. The double-sided decision was to give them a bit more stability and a more finished look.
making my first cut!
I was too focused on sewing straight lines to take some in-progress photos. But here are some “glamour shots” of my new, handmade placemats on my kitchen table!
a cheery table setting
loving the yellow-green-orange combo
– Cut 2 rectangles for each placemat, 13″ by 17″
– Arrange pairs of rectangles so patterned sides are facing each other
– *Serge one of the long sides first, then unfold into a 13″ x 34″ rectangle and serge the 34″ side
– Fold back into a 13″ x 17″ rectangle and serge the remaining short side and long (17″) side
– Sew from the corner towards the center of the open short side about 3″ and back tack. Do this for both corners. (Those short seams make it easier to form the corners when you turn the placemat right side out.)
– Turn placemats so pattern is now facing out
– Hand stitch the opening closed.
– From here, the placemats could be finished, but we decided to stitch in a border to help keep the two sides more securely in place. I chose a 1.5″ border – measured this out, then stitched around, and… voila! placemats!
*NOTE: The placemats could be sewn entirely on the sewing machine without serging. The serging was done to prevent raveling.
I recently discovered Fabric.com… and happened upon this site just in time to browse a fabulous sale! So I went a little crazy and ordered a total of 5.5 yards in a variety of yellow patterns to add some more splashes of color to our family room.
Here’s a peek:
And a shot with the purple couch:
Stay tuned to see how these fabrics get incorporated into our family room decor!