Cutlery place mat

You know what I hate? Microwaved food. And plastic utensils. And using facial tissues for napkins because I forgot to bring one. And most of all, dirty tables. But such is life when you work, right? I mean, most of us do, and there really isn’t a way to avoid eating at least one meal away from home on work days.

I came across this idea for a place mat and utensil holder all in one and thought it was genius! It also holds cloth napkins and provides a surface to eat off of. I’d love to make several more of these.

These would be great for picnics, too, or as gifts.


(Click fabrics for direct links for purchase at Warehouse Fabrics Inc.)

Elizabeth chocolate/natural - ELHCHL

Veranda chocolate/natural - VEACHL

Geo chocolate/natural - GEOCHL


The pattern

I found the pattern and idea for this project at But I found myself confused by the instructions. I guess I had already decided in my head how I would do it, so I just went ahead and put it together my own way.
To do it my way, you’ll need two main pieces, 20″x16″. I used two different fabrics.

You’ll need one piece that measures 20″x14.5″. I used a third fabric for this piece.

You’ll need one piece of ribbon 22″ long for the decorative trim and another piece 45″ long for the tie. By the way, are you impressed by how awesome my ribbon looks with my fabric? Lucky find!

If you’d like to make matching napkins, cut two large squares from whichever fabrics you prefer. Mine were about 20″x20″. The link to an easy tutorial is below.

The process

(click photos for bigger views)

Take your smaller piece of fabric (20″x14.5″) and fold it in half lengthwise and press, wrong-sides together. This will be your pocket. At left, the folded edge is on top and all of the other edges are raw edges.
Pin your 22″ ribbon piece near the top and top stitch into place. The folded edge of my fabric is on top.
Pin this pocket piece to one of your big fabric pieces, whichever you want to have inside the roll.
Baste pocket around side and bottom edges. (These are still all raw edges.)
Take your long ribbon piece and fold it in half.
Baste in place at edge of mat, with ribbon ends facing inward toward center of mat. You’ll line it up with the ribbon you just sewed on. These will be your ties, and it will look like one continuous piece when you’re finished.
Now you’ll stitch your pockets for holding your utensils and napkins. I used the measurements on the site, with the utensil sections about 2″ wide each and dividing the remainder in two parts.
Before you continue, make sure your ties are facing inward, not outward. I tucked mine into a pocket for the time being.
Place your other large fabric piece face-down on the interior piece you just made.
Sew all the way around, leaving a hole at the top for turning right-side out. Clip your corners to reduce bulk.
Turn right-side out through the hole that you left and push out the corners carefully.
As you press, press in the seam allowance of the hole you left open, as shown  at left.
Top stitch around the entire place mat. When doing this, you’ll sew up the turning hole.
I made two napkins from the same fabrics using the mitered-corner method. You can find our tutorial for doing so here. It’s really easy and quick!

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