I had a little time this weekend to work on a project and so I went for these. They are incredibly easy to make and useful. So, they are a good project when you are short on time. I had been wanting to use this adorable fabric, The Ghastlies by Alexander Henrey. It came out last year, but you can still find it online in a few shops.
I made these reversible so that I could use these all year (per Adam's recommendation. He doesn't like to have a lot of stuff in a box that you only get out once a year. A good point.)
1 yard fabric for front or 4 fat quarters
1 yard fabric for back or 4 fat quarters
2 yards Peltex #70 by Pellon
any embelishments you like (I used Ric Rac, 1 pkg for each mat, 4 total)
Cut fabric for the front and back of mats 19"x14" (or 1" squared larger than you want the finished product to be).
Cut #70 into 4 pieces 18"x13"
Make sure you wash the fabric before you begin. This is important for place mats because you will almost definitely need to wash them later and the fabric will shrink and make the place mats wonky.
Place a front and back piece right sides together and sew around with a 1/2" seam allowance, leaving an 8" opening for inserting the Peltex pieces. Turn right sides out. To insert Peltex, roll up and insert, then flatten and work into corners. Sew the opening closed. Because the Peltex will roll a bit from being bound in a bolt, iron the mats with a steam iron and they flatten out in seconds.
To give the finishing touch, sew a 1/4" seam allowance around the mats. If you are using Ric Rac, attach it at this point.
this is based on a pattern from Amy Butler's In Stitches