How To Make a Placemat Cutlery Holder

How To Make a Placemat Cutlery Holder

Kimber Watson
Feb 25, 2010

We should all know by now that disposable utensils are extremely wasteful as well as an unnecessary expenditure. So whether you are brown bagging it to work or heading out for a picnic, here's a nifty little project that will have your cutlery traveling in style.

What You Need

Two pieces of cotton or linen medium-weight fabric, each measuring 20" x 16"
22" of ribbon or trim
45" of ribbon or trim
coordinating thread

Sewing machine
Measuring tape or ruler
Straight pins
Point turner or chopstick


1. Preshrink fabric by washing, drying, and pressing it.

2. Use your chalk and ruler to mark the dimensions on the wrong side of your fabric. Then cut out each piece.

3. Line the fabric up and pin right sides of the fabric together.

4. Using a straight stitch, sew the fabric together leaving approximately a 3" gap along the bottom edge (the bottom edge will eventually be folded up to form the pockets).

5. Slip your hand into or push the fabric through the gap, turning the fabric inside out. Use the point turner or chopstick to push the corners out.

6. Sew the open edge closed.

7. Lay the fabric flat. The open seam should be on the bottom edge. Starting your measuring at the left and right bottom edge, mark the left and right side at 5". Fold the bottom edge towards the top, creasing at the 5" markings. Press. This will now serve as your pocket.

8. Pin the shorter piece of trim along the top of the folded up edge, wrapping the ends towards the back. The trim will hide the sewn gap. Stitch the trim in place, doing so a couple times to make sure it is secure and you caught the folded ends of the trim.

9. With the trim secure, it's now time to sew the left and right edge of the pocketed area. First, grab the second, longer piece of trim (or ribbon). Fold it in half and insert a half inch of the folded end into the right side of the pocket areas edge. Line the trim up so the edge of the trim is inline with the top edge of the right side of the pocket. Pin in place and stitch up both sides a couple times. Backstitch at each end.

10. Now we need to form the individual pockets that will hold the utensils. Starting at the left seam working towards the right, mark off 2". Stitch a straight line to the top of the pocket, turn and stitch back down. Backstitch at each end. Mark another 2" off and repeat until you have four 2" pockets.

11. The remaining other half of the pocket should be around 10". Stitch another straight line to divide the pocket in half, giving you two even pockets (mine were about 5" each). This pocket is where I placed my napkin.

12. Insert utensils and you are ready to roll. Roll from left to right, wrap the ribbon around a couple times and tie.

13. You're finished! For mine, I think I will be ordering something a little lighter than my everyday silverware. Currently, I'm leaning towards bamboo utensils similar to these.

Additional Notes: A 1/2" seam allowance is included in measurements. Most fabrics have a "wrong" side (the back) and a "right" side (the front or side with the print). For other fabric options, you could also use a hand towel and cut it to size.

And for all those crafty parents out there, this would make a great teachers gift!

Images: Kimberly Watson

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