Jul 29

Table Setting Place Mats

I ask my kids on a daily basis to help me set the table.  The process usually involve forks strewn about the table, plates and cups haphazardly placed, and no one ever seems to have a napkin.  Then, there is the random spoon that somehow makes it on to the table.  I have tried to teach my kids the proper way to set a table, but so far, none of them had mastered it, and it looked as if it wasn’t going to happen any time soon.

So, I cheated and made table setting place mats.

yellow place setting place mat

Using double sided fusible web, I drew the pieces of silverware and used an actual plate to draw the circle for the plate.

pink place setting place mat

I didn’t want to have to make a white napkin for each place mat, so instead, I used a zigzag stitch to outline where the napkin should go.  I used a zigzag stitch around the edges of the silverware and the plate as well.  Then, I quilted the place mats using an elongated zigzag stitch.


table setting place mats

The background fabric is a linen that I purchased at Ikea.  I chose to starch the fabric, just to make it a little easier to manage.  The batting I used for the place mats is Warm and Natural, which is my usual batting.  These place mats have not been washed yet, but expect them to become rather crinkly with the washing.

quilted placemats

I did not add a space for cups on the the place mats because I’m not a fan of putting a cup on a place mat that can easily be pulled off the table by a small child.  Let’s just say, I learned by experience that this is not a good combination.  If I made these again, I would probably make the bottoms of the plate and silverware images closer to the bottom of the place mat.  The kids need the plate as close to the edge of the table as possible.

place setting place mat

If you are wondering if it works, the answer is YES!!!  My 5 year old set the table perfectly.  Look, even the knife is pointing in the right direction.

My kids are visual learners, so I was glad to be able to put this together for them.  It has been a fun way to teach them to set the table.  And they ask for the place mats all of the time, so I have no doubt they will get plenty of use!



  1. Barbie says:

    What a great idea, and I’m glad it works! I love the different colors. I’ve seen similar things before, but making it yourself is so much cuter.

  2. Carla says:

    Well done! My HUSBAND can barely get the knife facing the right way. He thought I was ‘making it all up’ when it came to table manners when I met him. We had very different upbringings.