Who says color has to be just on the plate? These DIY placemats work for any occasion
Decorating your table doesn't need to be complicated. These DIY placemats can be made in just a few steps.
Heavy weight linen fabric (one placemat = 13 x 18 inches)
Soda ash and salt
Two plastic cups
Two wood craft sticks
Measuring spoon (do not use utensils also used for cooking with dye)
Rip your pre-washed linen into 13 x 18-inch pieces, leaving a raw edge. To rip linen, make a small 1/4-inch cut on the edge of the fabric with a scissors and then tear so that the linen rips along the grain of the weave.
Combine 2 teaspoons of dye and a small amount of water in plastic cup. Stir with wood stick to create a paste and completely dissolve dye (this step prevents "freckles" of undissolved dye on finished piece).
Combine dye mix with about 8 cups of water, 1/2 cup salt and 2 tablespoons of soda ash in the plastic tub.
Stir with plastic spoon until everything is completely dissolved.
Hold placemat above plastic tray and lower one end into dye bath, keeping as straight as possible. Submerge about 2 - 3 inches and let dye penetrate for a minute.
Remove fabric and set on a piece of plastic to dry. The dye will continue creeping up the fabric a bit while drying.
Repeat previous steps with second dye color and dip dye opposite edge of placemat.
Rinse each end in cold water and then wash the whole placemat in warm water with detergent. Hang to dry.