A Step-by-Step Guide to Sewing a Simple Placemat and Coaster Set

Sewing is a remarkable form of creative expression that allows you to transform fabrics into functional works of art. In this guide, we’ll explore the world of textiles by crafting elegant yet simple placemats and coasters to adorn your dining table and showcase your sewing skills. Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned tailor, this project offers an opportunity to unleash your creativity and bring a touch of artistry to your home.

Materials Needed

Before embarking on this project, ensure you have the following materials:

For the Placemat:

  • Fabric – Choose a durable yet visually appealing fabric such as cotton or linen. Prepare an 18″ x 12″ piece.
  • Fabric for backing – Use a coordinating fabric for the backing, cut to the same dimensions.
  • Fusible interfacing – Prepare an 18″ x 12″ piece to add structure to the placemat.
  • Coordinating thread – Select thread that complements the fabric.
  • Sewing machine – A basic sewing machine will suffice for this project.
  • Iron – Essential for pressing and fusing the interfacing.
  • Scissors or rotary cutter – Ensure you have precise cutting tools.
  • Pins or clips – These will secure the fabric layers during sewing.

For the Coasters (set of 4):

  • Coordinating fabric – Match the fabric with the placemat or choose a complementary one. Cut four 5″ x 5″ squares.
  • Fusible interfacing – Cut four 5″ x 5″ squares for added stability.
  • Coordinating thread – As with the placemat, select thread that complements the fabric.
  • Sewing machine – The same machine used for the placemat will work here.
  • Iron – Essential for pressing and fusing interfacing.
  • Scissors – Ensure they’re sharp for accurate cutting.

Creating the Placemat:

  • Begin by cutting your main fabric and backing fabric to the specified dimensions of 18″ x 12″.
  • Cut the fusible interfacing to match the same size.
  • Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to fuse the interfacing to the wrong side of your main fabric. This will provide structure and durability to your placemat.
  • Place the main fabric and backing fabric right sides together, aligning all edges.
  • Pin or clip the layers together to prevent shifting during sewing.
  • Using coordinating thread, stitch around the edges of the placemat, leaving a 1/4-inch seam allowance. Be sure to leave a 4-inch opening for turning.
  • Trim the corners to reduce bulk, making sure not to cut into the stitching.
  • Turn the placemat right side out through the opening.
  • Press the placemat with an iron, paying special attention to the edges to create crisp, even folds.
  • Topstitch around the entire placemat, close to the edge, to secure the layers and close the opening.

Creating the Coasters:

  • Cut your coordinating fabric and fusible interfacing into four 5″ x 5″ squares each.
  • Fuse the interfacing to the wrong side of the fabric squares following the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Place two fabric squares right sides together and pin or clip them.
  • Stitch around the edges with a 1/4-inch seam allowance, leaving a small opening for turning.
  • Trim the corners and turn the coaster right side out.
  • Press the coaster with an iron, ensuring the edges are crisp.
  • Topstitch around the coaster, close to the edge, to secure the layers and close the opening.
  • Repeat the process to create a set of four coasters.

Now that you’ve completed your placemat and coaster set, you can enjoy a beautifully crafted addition to your dining table decor. Feel free to personalize them with fabric choices that match your style and preferences. Happy sewing!

Step-by-Step Tutorial

Step 1: Preparing the Fabric Our journey begins with fabric preparation. Start by giving your fabric a good wash and a thorough press. This ensures that your material is clean and free from any pesky wrinkles that might affect your sewing precision. Carefully measure and cut your placemat fabric, backing fabric, and interfacing to the specified dimensions.

Step 2: Applying Interfacing Now, let’s add some structure and durability to our fabric pieces. Fuse the fusible interfacing to the wrong side of both the placemat fabric and the coaster fabric squares. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and use an iron to securely attach the interfacing. This step ensures that your creations will stand the test of time.

Step 3: Creating the Coasters Moving on to the coasters, fold each fabric square in half, making sure that the right sides are facing each other. Stitch along two edges, leaving one edge open for turning. To reduce bulk, trim the corners diagonally. Then, carefully turn the coaster right side out using a blunt tool like a chopstick. To achieve those sharp, crisp edges, give the coaster a quick press with an iron.

Step 4: Assembling the Placemat For the placemat, lay the fabric right side up. Center the interfaced backing fabric on top, ensuring that the wrong side faces up. To prevent any shifting during sewing, use pins or clips to secure the layers together.

Step 5: Sewing the Placemat With a ½-inch seam allowance, sew around the edges of the placemat, leaving a 4-inch opening along one side. Be sure to employ a backstitch at the beginning and end to secure the threads and prevent any unraveling.

Step 6: Turning and Pressing Now, it’s time to turn things right side out through the opening you left. Use a blunt tool to gently push out the corners, ensuring they are sharp and well-defined. Don’t forget to press the placemat with an iron, paying special attention to the edges and corners. To achieve a polished finish, neatly fold in the edges of the opening.

Step 7: Topstitching For that final touch of professionalism, topstitch around the edges of the placemat, approximately ¼-inch from the edge. This not only secures the opening but also imparts a refined look to your creation.

Step 8: Finishing Touches To complete your set, repeat the same process to craft a set of four coasters. Apply the same level of attention to detail, and soon you’ll have a charming and cohesive dining table set that reflects your craftsmanship and style.

With these simple steps, you’ll be able to create stunning placemats and coasters that will not only protect your table but also add a touch of elegance to your dining experience. Enjoy your crafting journey!


Creating a placemat and coaster set is more than just sewing; it’s about infusing your personality into every stitch. This tutorial has guided you through the art of transforming fabrics into elegant yet functional table accessories.

Through meticulous fabric selection, precise cutting, and thoughtful stitching, you’ve created items that will enhance your dining experience. Whether you’re an aspiring seamstress or a seasoned professional, this project has allowed you to explore the realm of sewing in a practical and rewarding way. As you admire your finished placemat and coaster set, remember that every stitch is a testament to your creativity and skill.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can I use different types of fabric for the placemat and coasters?

Absolutely! While consistency in fabric can provide a cohesive look, mixing fabrics can add visual interest. Just ensure that the chosen fabrics are suitable for the intended purpose and can withstand washing.

2. What’s the purpose of interfacing?

Interfacing adds structure and stability to the fabric, enhancing its durability and shape. It’s particularly useful for items like placemats and coasters that need to retain their form.

3. Can I sew these items by hand instead of using a sewing machine?

Certainly. While a sewing machine provides efficiency and precision, you can sew these items by hand using basic sewing techniques. Keep in mind that hand sewing might take more time and effort.

4. How do I choose the right thread color?

Select a thread color that complements the fabric. You can either choose a color that blends in or contrasts slightly for added visual appeal. Bring a sample of your fabric to the store to help you match the thread accurately.

5. What’s the purpose of topstitching?

Topstitching serves both a functional and decorative purpose. It secures the layers of fabric together and gives a finished look to the edges. It also adds a professional touch to your sewing project.

6. Can I personalize the placemat and coaster set?

Absolutely! You can personalize your creations by adding appliques, embroidery, fabric paint, or any other decorative elements that match your style. Just make sure they are securely attached and won’t interfere with the functionality of the items.

7. Are there any alternatives to interfacing?

If you don’t have interfacing on hand, you can use heavyweight fabric, such as canvas or denim, as a substitute. This will provide similar structure and stability to your project.

8. How do I care for the placemat and coaster set?

For most fabrics, machine wash the placemat and coasters in cold water with a mild detergent. To maintain their appearance, avoid using bleach or harsh chemicals. Air drying or using a low heat setting in the dryer is recommended.

9. Can I sell the placemat and coaster sets I make using this tutorial?

Yes, you can sell the items you make using this tutorial. However, it’s a good practice to acknowledge the source of the tutorial and not claim it as your original design.

10. What’s the skill level required for this project?

This project is suitable for beginners with basic sewing skills. The steps are clearly outlined, and with practice, even those new to sewing can achieve great results. Experienced sewers can also enjoy refining their techniques and experimenting with variations.

11. Can I resize the placemat and coaster dimensions?

Certainly. The dimensions provided in this tutorial are just guidelines. You can adjust the sizes based on your preferences. Keep in mind that altering the dimensions might affect the overall aesthetic and functionality of the items.

12. What other projects can I try once I’m comfortable with this one?

Once you’re comfortable with sewing placemats and coasters, you can explore more complex projects like table runners, napkins, aprons, or even quilted items. This will allow you to expand your sewing skills and create an array of beautiful and functional items for your home.

Hannah Nelson

Hi, there! I am Hannah Nelson, your host on this website. I started this blog to teach my lovely readers how to master the art of sewing effortlessly and how to turn this hobby into an income generating business.

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