Added Oct 21, 2009
Fort Collins, Co...
My mom asked me to make her some placemats, based off of some store bought plastic ones she really liked the shape of. I used the plastic one as a template and added 1/2" seam allowance for all sides. I lined them with Warm & White batting, and the finish top stitch is also at the 1/2" mark.
Tip: I used a piece of thin weather stripping at my 1/2" line as a seam guide and it worked amazing! It’s lightly sticky right off the roll, and repostioned multiple times with ease. I have heard of building up masking tape along the same lines, but the weather stripping is already around 1/2" tall so a little piece was all I needed.
You will need around 1/3 of a yard for each mat, but I suggest getting a little extra so you can place the mat on the design of the material as you like it.
I used a standard cotton home decor fabric. They say dry clean only, but if you get cotton you can machine wash it and either starch it or use sizing to restore that stiffer feel to the fabric