Tuesday, 21 July 2020

Place Mats for Travelling

When one travels to a shared family summer house without indoor plumbing, obviously, one can't expect to have everything they wish for at their fingertips. "Roughing-it" often means giving-up the comforts of home. Isn't this is the purpose for going to a place in which your entire routine is disrupted?

However, one of those comforts that I no longer wish to give-up is having *my* dining utensils. (Oh, yeah, and freshly ground pepper... but that is another story.)

Last summer I tested a travel place mat concept. I need something to hold the cutlery, something to travel easily, something washable, and something that, when packed, would keep everything from slipping out. My test worked very well, but as with all good "wear tests", I found needed improvements.

In fact, it worked so well that it was noticed and I had a request to make more. 

The first step meant finding fabric. I decided each mat should be a different colour, but somehow coordinated. Thank goodness, my Mom spotted these coordinating fabrics at Periwinkle in Saskatoon. I LOVE the colours. It was a bonus that the three of the colours I was seeking (which are the favourite colours of three of the people now owning one of these) were major colours in this set. The fabric is created by Alison Glass for Andover.

I LOVE the prose. I hope that it is read and reread. I posted two more examples of the text at the end of this post.

The next step included planning and creating pockets. I included a slot for chopsticks and a reusable straw. Only after I found and purchased stainless steel straws did I find silicone ones that are much gentler on the mouth. 

A few years ago, I couldn't resist buying a package of the "New Black" pencils. They are a-dorable and continued the prose/reading theme of these place mats. The narrow slot on the left is for a pencil.

Here they are after quilting.

The top of the place mat is folded-over, the mat is rolled up, and an elastic keeps everything in place. I hope these enjoy many, many vacations.

Years ago, my Poppa-in-law began a tradition with me. Before he was my in-law, I made him some pajamas. He thanked me for them and I knew he appreciated something made by hand. I did not know, until several years later, precisely how much he enjoyed those pajamas until them came back to me... threadbare and with a note asking for another pair. Of course, I made him more. I hope these come back to me, in several years and after much use.