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)
- Fabric dye
- Soda ash and salt
- Plastic tub
- Two plastic cups
- Two wood craft sticks
- Plastic spoon
- 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.