Sunday, April 22, 2012

Toddler Playmat


Here is a quick and easy play mat that folds into an attached pocket with a handle for carrying. It’s sort of a quillow; quilt pillow, but made as a play mat instead. Open, it is a rectangle about 35 inches by 43 inches finished.


I started with picking out the background fabric, and then found a fabric I liked for the road and purchased a yard of each. Thin batting or any fabric (I used flannel) added in the middle gives it more body and structure, but you don't need it. I purchased 1 1/2 yds for the backing. The strapping for the handle was 2/3 of a yard; but you could use leftover fabric to make your handle.


At home I sketched out a plan for the roadway and the buildings. I chose the easiest and fastest way I could think of to mark out the roads. I taped two pieces of chalk to a piece of plastic canvas (because it’s the first thing I saw when I was looking for something to use) that would hold them at the same distance apart so I could chalk my lines on to the fabric. It worked great!


I cut the roadway out, adjusted it on my background fabric and basted it on. I turned the edges of the roadway fabric under as I stitched; a zig zag stitch without turning it under would work too. Later I wished I had laid the roadway fabric onto the background fabric, stitched on the chalk lines then cut the excess away. That would have been really fast!


I looked through my fabrics and found pieces for the buildings, cut the shapes and stitched them into place as I went using a tight zig zag stitch. I added a blue satin for a pond, satin stitched lines for driveways, added bushes and trees, and a farmyard of sorts.


I cut my backing fabric down to 1 yard, and then stitched backing fabric and middle fabric together going around outside edges. Then from the leftover backing piece I cut a pocket 13 inches by 13 with seam allowance added; ½ inch on each side. You may want to use a double thickness of fabric for the pocket or reinforce it with interfacing for added strength since the handle will be attached to the pocket not the play mat.  Press the seam allowance down around the pocket, sew one edge over.

Stitch the pocket onto the backing fabric 12 inches in on each side of the 36 inch side (or centered), with the finished edge open to the outer edge of the play mat; double stitch for added strength.

For the handle, decide how long you want it to be, mine was about 16 inches, and sew it just inside the pocket opening onto the pocket about 2-3 inches in from the edges.



Now you need to fold the mat up to find the correct placement of the loop the handle goes through. (figure B & C)  With pocket side on the bottom, fold mat into thirds. Fold pocket up, then fold opposite end over three times and stuff into pocket. Smooth out where needed. Where the handle meets the top fold is where you need to sew the loop the handle will go through. Mark placement (figure D), unfold and sew loop flat, about 6-7 inches long, onto the back of the mat.
Place the backing and the finished play surface, right sides together, (figure A above) and stitch around all sides leaving an opening for turning at the pocket area. Turn right side out through opening, press and stitch around outside edge to secure. Close up opening by machine or hand. You can hand stitch in a couple of places through all layers to keep them stable, or even do a little quilting if you like. I was in a hurry :)

The pocket can also be used as a carry bag for the toy cars.
*Join me on Wednesdays for Wow Us Wednesday*
Copyright© Family Home and Life 2012 All Rights Reserved

27 comments:

  1. Very cute! I bet the grandkids loved those!

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  2. You have an absolutely amazing talent Connie. Love your ideas, unfortunately I don't sew.

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  3. How in the world do you find the time, Connie? Not only to make such crafty goodies, but to photograph and write about them, too? You are one inspirational grandma!

    Thank you for linking!

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  4. This is great.
    LOL I assure you that should I attempt this it will take me NOT twice as long as you but at least TEN times as long

    Having gone through sewing hell lately on a doll dress I'll put this off to at least Feb, lol ....

    Connie you are so talented and always have such a variety of crafts and sewing ( and now photography stuff ) that you just blow me away.......:)

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  5. Oh my gosh, this is so adorable! I love how you turned the play mat into a portable item kids can carry around.

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  6. What a wonderful tutorial! We have a six year old in our lives that LOVES matchbox cars. This would be perfect for him. Thank you for sharing it on Wednesday's Adorned From Above Blog Hop! -Marci @ Stone Cottage Adventures

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  7. This would be great for my boys. They have just gotten into cars, and I have been looking for some projects I can make for them. Thank you for the tutorial!

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  8. What a great project and a great tutorial! Thank you so much for sharing.

    Cynthia at http://Feedingbig.com

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  9. Very cute!
    Thanks for sharing.
    Hope to see you on my blog:)

    Greetings from Singapore~Sanghamitra

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  10. Now that's clever.

    http://joycelansky.blogspot.com

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  11. Too clever!Love the fabrics! Thanks so much for sharing the great tutorial! I'd love for you to visit my blog.
    Wishing you and your family a very Happy New Year!

    Hugs from Portugal,

    Ana Love Craft
    www.lovecraft2012.blogspot.com

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  12. I love it and shared it on Twitter and Pinterest. It would be great for my son's afternoon quiet time.

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  13. Connie, Thanks for linking up to our Strut Your Stuff Saturday with your cute toddler playmats. Have a Happy New Year! -The Six Sisters

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  14. So cute! This is perfect for going to Gran's house or a play date! I would love to have you link up at my Show Me Your Plaid Monday's! http://www.pandpkitchen.com/2012/12/30/show-me-your-plaid-mondays-4/

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  15. what a cute toy! my grandson would love this and he will turn 4 in Feb. So, I just might sew him one up. Thanks for the tutorial

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  16. Thank you for Linking up at Show Me Your Plaid Monday's! You have been Pinned. I hope you come back each week!

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  17. This is so cute - my 1 year old son would LOVE LOVE this. I might just have to give it a whirl. Thank you! :-)

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  18. Amazing idea! You are so sweet to make such a thoughtful gift (I'm assuming for your grandbabies!). Thanks for sharing with all of us. I'm pinning this project.

    Jessica
    ahumblecreation.com

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  19. What a fabulous idea. I'll be pinning this one! Thanks for linking up for Flash Blog Friday :-)

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  20. Playmats are always so fun. I have a 2 1/2 year old grandson that has one in his bedroom and loves it. What a wonderful gift. Thanks for sharing with Share Your Cup.
    Hugs,
    Jann

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  21. So adorable, some kids are going to have such a fun time playing with that. So easy to bring around as well.

    www.iheartpears.blogspot.com

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  22. What a great play mat!! I love it! Thank you for sharing at Sharing Saturday!

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  23. Please share your projects at www.creativecraftsthursday.blogspot.com each and every week and check out what other creative divas are up to.

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  24. Happy New Year!
    Thank you so much for sharing your crafty project with us last week in the Bowdabra Crafty Showcase. We love seeing your creations! If you haven't yet stopped in, the new Showcase is up and running! We can't wait to see what you share with us in 2013!

    Susie@Bowdabra
    http://bowdabrablog.com/2013/01/05/saturday-showcase-craft-project-linky-14/

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  25. Great tutorial for a fun project -- bet the recipient LOVeD it! Thanks so much for sharing on Busy Monday!

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