Christmas Party Placemats
Be sure to give us feedback on this project below.
Time: 4-8 Hours depending on embellishments
For this project, I created a design for a basic placemat. I wanted the sewist to have something that would require little time to construct and more time for their creativity to soar; mine started right off the bat when I decided to make my placemats reversible. I used Decorative stitches with Artistic Gold metallic thread in the needle and also in the bobbin; as you can see it turned out absolutely beautiful. For the utility stitches I used Janome’s Serger (80 wt) Thread for its stronger yet finer properties over regular sewing threads; this way I could avoid excessive bulk in seams. I also chose Janome Serger threads to sew with because they do not leave a lot of lint which is critical for a cleaner more efficient running machine. While my fabrics are Christmas oriented, I believe that you can think of many different fabrics and designs that can be featured in this 3”by3” squares and the large 9”by9” feature square. Get that rotary cutter and mat out and let’s create a table setting for the ages!
Janome Supplies Required
• Horizon Memory Craft 12000 (or any Janome Sewing Machine)
• Artistic Gold metallic thread
• Janome’s Serger (80 wt) Thread
• Jenny Haskin’s Quilt Magic fusible fleece
• Needles - Red Tip, Size 14
• Bobbins-Plastic Janome (one with Artistic Gold metallic thread, one with Janome’s Serger 80wt thread)
• 1/4" Seam Foot for perfect seams and corners
• Straight Stitch needle plate
• Ditch Quilting Foot
Added benefits of the Horizon Memory Craft 12000
• 9mm wide stitches!
• Optic Magnifier to make your sewing view LARGER!
• New Retractable Sewing Light!
Fabrics and Notions Required
• Basic sewing supplies
• Iron and Ironing board
• Appliqué pressing sheet or some other easy release product to protect ironing board)
• Red: CORAL, Kona Cotton; Kaufman 1/8th yard
• Green: 0361548B, NOEL by Susan Winget; Benartex 1/8th yard
• Maroon: MERLOT, Marbleous Jacquard; Kaufman 1/8th yard
• Black Polka Dot: 0361499B, NOEL by Susan Winget; Benartex 1/3rd
• Poinsettia: 0361199B, NOEL by Susan Winget; Benartex 1/3rd yard
• Backing Fabric: MERLOT, Marbleous Jacquard; Kaufman 1/3rd yard
• Batting: Jenny Haskin’s Quilt Magic, Jenny Haskins; RNK Distributing 1.5 yard
Before You Start:
*Important note about ironing last, and prewashing all your fabrics for shrinkage. If you wait till the end, you may be surprised as your fabric shrinks and you end up with some slightly odd edges before your embellishment steps are started.*
*If you decide to Iron the placemat tops to the Jenny Haskin’s Quilt Magic fusible fleece immediately, be sure to have an appropriate release surface on the other side of the Fusible Fleece because you may just iron the top to the fleece and the other side of the fleece to the ironing board cover!*
1) Pre-wash all (at least your red) fabrics before cutting, then iron flat with an iron on a cotton setting.
2) First Cut all fabrics in the following STRIP measurements:
a. Red cut a 3 ½” STRIP the Width of Fabric (WOF)
b. Green cut a 3 ½” STRIP WOF
c. Maroon cut a 3 ½” STRIP WOF
d. Black polka dot cut 8; 2 ½” STRIPs WOF
e. Poinsettia cut a 9 ½” STRIP WOF
f. Backing cut 2; 13 ½” STRIPs WOF
g. Jenny Haskin’s Quilt Magic fusible fleece cut 2; 13 ½” STRIPs WOF
3) Second Cuts are made as follows:
a. Red cut 4; 3 ½ squares
b. Green cut 4; 3 ½ squares
c. Maroon cut 4; 3 ½ squares
d. Black polka dot cut 12; 2 ½“by 9 ½” strips for sashing, right and left border strips.
e. Black and polka dot cut 8; 2 ½” by 18 ½” strips for top and bottom border strips.
f. Poinsettia cut 4; 9 ½” by 9 ½” squares.
g. Backing cut 4; 13 ½” by 18 ½” rectangles.
h. Jenny Haskin’s Quilt Magic fusible fleece cut 4; 13 ½” by 18 ½” rectangles.
Note- Any Janome sewing machine may be used for the basic placemat construction with utility and/or decorative stitches; 1/4" Seam Foot for perfect seams and corners and a straight stitch needle plate <there are many to chose from for most all Janome Machines> are encouraged for the construction steps for consistency and quality stitches.
4) Set your sewing machine up with Janome’s Serger (80 wt) Thread and wound bobbin [or your choice of proper sewing thread]. Place the elective 1/4" Seam Foot for perfect seams and corners and optional straight stitch needle plate on your machine. Select your straight stitch and adjust the length to a nice piecing length of 1.8 and leave at normal tensions (or 3.8 on computerized machines).If using the Memory Craft 11000 SE or Horizon Memory Craft 12000; select the sewing applications tab (T-Shirt icon) and then select the Patchwork icon. On the next screen, select the straight stitch icon. The machine will automatically set the stitch length (1.8) and tensions (3.8) to the correct measurements.
5) Piece the Red, Green and Maroon 3 ½” squares end to end in order to form 4; 3 ½” by 9 ½” rectangles.
6) Iron seams to the darker colored fabrics.
7) Pin and sew a 2 ½” by 9 ½” Polka Dot sashing strip to the 3 ½” by 9 ½” rectangle that you created in step 5. *Always keep in mind an order, I placed the red square to the top each time so all my placemats would have the same geometric appearance.* REPEAT 3 more times to make 4; 5 ½” by 9 ½” rectangles.
8) Iron the seams to the dark (Polka Dot) fabric.
9) Pin and sew the 9 ½” square of Poinsettia fabric to the (opposite) long side of the 2 ½” by 9 ½” Polka Dot sashing strip. REPEAT 3 more times to make 4; 14 ½” by 9 ½” rectangles.
10) Iron the seams to the dark (Polka Dot) fabric.
11) Pin and sew a short 2 ½” by 9 ½” border strip to each 9 ½” side of the 14 ½” by 9 ½” rectangles that were created in step number 9. You should now have 4; 18 ½” by 9 ½” rectangles for the center of your placemats.
12) Iron the seams to the dark (Polka Dot) fabric.
13) You may square off your rectangles for a straight seam on the top and bottom border sides and then MEASURE the distance across (left to right) to make sure your measurements for the top and bottom borders are still cut to the correct length of 18 ½”s. If it is shorter, gently pull your placemat to fit, if they are longer; ease the extra in when sewing your border seams. If you are using the Janome ¼” Presser Foot, you should have no problem coming up with the exact measurements 18 ½” by 8 ½” for your four placemats.
14) Pin and sew your last 2 ½” by 18 ½” border strips to the top and bottom of your 18 ½” by 9 ½” rectangle center. REPEAT this step 3 more times to create the final 4 tops of your placemats equaling 13 ½” by 18 ½” rectangles.
15) Iron the seams to the dark (Polka Dot) border fabric.
MAKING the QUILT SANDWICH:
16) Place your 13 ½” by 18 ½” Jenny Haskins Quilt Magic Fusible Fleece rectangle on a hard surface.
17) Place your 13 ½” by 18 ½” Place mat rectangle FACE UP. (Refer to step 27 if you would like to Iron the Place mat rectangle to the Jenny Haskin’s Quilt Magic fusible fleece at this point)
18) Place your 13 ½” by 18 ½” Backing Fabric rectangles FACE DOWN or RIGHT SIDES FACING each other.
19) Pin in place.
SEWING the QUILT SANDWICH:
20) Sew with a 1/4” seam around the entire rectangle leaving a 3” to 4” opening for turning.
21) REPEAT steps 16-20 to make all 4 Placemats.
CLIP and TURN:
22) At this point, clip the corners of all 4 placemats. I like to cut in a longer angle, not straight across, I have less bulk and it forms a nicer pointed corner.
23) Turn all 4 of your placemats carefully being cautious to not push the points through or perforate the seams along the sides or points.
24) Flatten and adjust your mats to be sure that there are no wrinkles or ironed seams bulking up or turned underneath your tops.
25) Tuck the ¼” top and backing fabric into the opening that you have turned your placemat through.
26) Pin the opening fabric in place making sure that it folds nicely into place to match your edge/side seams.
a. You can either whip stitch the openings closed or
b. Top stitch at a scant ¼” or a 1/8th” of an inch around the entire border of the placemat making sure your seam catches the fabric at the opening. Make sure to switch your straight stitch needle plate for your standard needle plate when switching to a decorative stitch!
c. You can also use a decorative stitch if you would like to stitch along the ¼” border of the placemat and make sure the stitches cover your opening fabrics.
27) Iron the mats at your chosen manufacturer’s directions for your Jenny Haskins Quilt Magic Fusible Fleece.
28) If you desire, you are now done with your placemats.
Enjoy this creative part of the process.
1) I used some very flashy new Artistic Gold metallic thread for the decorative stitch that I quilted into the ditch.
2) You can use the Ditch Quilting Foot to create a more perfect cover (decorative) stitch over the seams.
3) I used quilting stitch number 41 (p.138) on the Horizon Memory Craft 12000 at a 3 mm width and length. (You can play around a bit to get the perfect length.) ALWAYS test stitch your creation to be sure it will sew as you desire!
4) Play with this step because you may just like to use the brand new 9mm wide stitches!
5) I also used the Optic Magnifier with a 1.5X magnification to get a larger view of the needle area to follow that dark seam line!
6) And how could you pass up the opportunity for more sewing light? The new Retractable Sewing Light works great! Just slide the arm toward you by pulling the small tab on the arm. The light will turn on automatically. Adjust the angle of the light to illuminate the working area and your off and running!