For a while I have been keeping my eyes open for a good use for some oilcloth. There are always lunch bags, etc. but I don't really need one and I wanted to make something useful. I found a free pattern by Amy Butler called, Laminated Picnic Blanket with Carrying Case, and it struck a chord with me. I hate bringing out even our old blankets and getting them full of sticker burs and other roughage. And where I am from it rains a lot, so there is always a chance that the dampness will seep through and wet our little bums. So, for me this pattern was a bit of inspiration.
I found this lovely Japanese oilcloth at the local Sew Crafty. It is from the line Echino by Etsuko Furuya.
It matched perfectly with this fabric I already had from the same line called Border Print Grassy Plain that I got at the International Quilt Festival last year. It has been sitting in my "must find something good for this fabric soon" pile for almost a year.
Anyway, I did not really follow the instructions, just saw her idea and jumped right in. But this is not one of those projects I am going to say is "so easy" or "you could whip this up in no time." I hated working on this project. Oil cloth was so not easy to work with! I even bought a special pressure foot and everything. But, it is done. It works. And it is as cute as I hoped it would be, even though I was pulling out my hair the whole time.
I even made my own little carrying case. I cut a strip 2 inches longer than the circumference of the rolled up blanket and sewed Velcro at each end. Then, I made some bias tape for the handle and attached it to one end. I added a button hole to the other end. When the case is wrapped around the bundle and velcroed shut, the handle slips through the button hole, making it nice and secure. I think the picture gives better detail than my explanation.
If anyone has tips on working with this beastly fabric, I'd love to hear them.