Household Crafts

A Change of Place(mat)

So as I served up the bibimbap with bolgigi the other day, placing the bowl on the impossibly old placemats, I thought: it’s time for new placemats. When I went out looking, they either had newer versions of my impossibly old placemats, or versions that looked like they’d been made with fabric from France.

Hey! I have fabric from France. Like from about 20 years ago.

Yes, it is also impossibly old, but it should do. So in the late afternoon sun (important for a plot twist later on) I folded down this fabric that was made for napkins, attempting to herd it into in a size like the impossibly old placemats.

I glued down the fold, stitched it, backed it with some batting and more impossibly old fabric, turned it inside out, poked out the corners and stitched the opening closed. I went on an adventure with quilting, moving from WhatWasIThinking to ILikeThisPrettyWell.

Then as I was finishing up today, I noticed that hmmmm. The fabric is darker on one edge — or faded on the other (however you want to think about it). I guess laying out that fabric in the late afternoon sun on the first day complicated my laser-like color vision. (lol)

Four placemats finished.

And when I went to make the napkin, yep. I can really see the fade. I used this tutorial.

I have more unfaded sections to make into napkins…and some faded sections, too.

Remember this quote from a couple of posts back? I may have this etched in my brain, because it applies to this, too:

This was my 2021-22 year-long making of pillows to go on the bed, shown from January (upper left, snowflake) to November (middle bottom row, lilies). I kept thinking I needed to get December’s made. But that idea — that some things end because we are finished with them — rang in my head. I’ve made a new Christmas Quilt for the bed, and don’t know if my idea will “go” with it, plus Evergreen, EverLife has a lot going on. It probably doesn’t need a pillow. So I’m finished with this. Pillows-of-the-Month are done.

Lastly, thank you for your observations and responses on my last post, Age of Subtraction. A lot of what you wrote has reverberated out into my life, into conversations with my family, and given me a lot of think about. I appreciate your taking the time to write and be a part of this conversation.

6 thoughts on “A Change of Place(mat)

  1. Your placemats look great! I love your comment about when things are done/finished/ended. Knowing that and the freedom to decide are both powerful!

  2. You know, having placemats that already have a bit of a patina (a bit of fading) might make it easier to start using them and getting them dirty. I know when I set out a newly made set of placemats my husband always feels bad when they inevitably catch the first spills of food… but that’s what they are for!

  3. I think I have some of that impossibly old fabric in yellow. It makes up so well in your placemats. You’ll get a lot of use out of them. Your pillows all look pretty, but you are right. I don’t think I would add anything that detracts from that beautiful quilt.

  4. I really love that quote. I need to print it out and keep it handy. And your placemats/napkins are lovely.

  5. I remember those French prints. Provence-type fabrics, aren’t they? As I recall, because I used to have some, the fabric can be coarse. It’s interesting how the colors faded, but I think that adds to the character of the placemats and napkins. After a few uses and washes, you won’t be able to tell which is which. Enjoy using them.

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