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Raffia Place Mats

Geometric designs can be added easily to place mats. The embroidered pattern and the different colors of raffia offer a nice way to make plain table linens more distinctive.




  • Raffia
  • Disappearing-ink fabric pen
  • Place mats
  • Thread (any color)
  • Sewing needles


  1. Step 1

    Using a disappearing-ink fabric pen, draw a row of diamond shapes (ours are 1 1/2 by 1 1/2 inches) along the bottom of a place mat. Draw an additional diamond shape at the top left of the place mat.

  2. Step 2

    Thread a large-eyed needle with raffia in desired color, knotting it before embroidering design using a detached-chain stitch.

  3. Step 3


    Starting with first diamond, draw a threaded needle up through A. Draw the needle down through A, creating a loop. Holding the loop, gently use fingers to flatten and spread out raffia. [See image.]

  4. Step 4

    Draw needle up through B, inside the loop. Pull loop taut. Bring needle down through B, outside of the loop.

  5. Step 5

    Working on one side of diamond at a time, repeat steps 3 and 4, creating a stitch from A to D; C to D; and then C to B.

  6. Step 6

    Stitch remaining diamonds onto place mats. When stitching several in a row, connect them: Always use point D of the preceding diamond as your new point B.

  7. Step 7

    Knot stitches on underside of mat as needed. Spot-clean mats as needed.

Martha Stewart Living, June 2008



Reviews (3)

  • cbarbara28 27 Jul, 2008

    it seems as a good idea, but my question is wouldn't it make the cups and dishes unbalanced during use?????????

  • Pablena 27 Jul, 2008

    I really like this idea! I can picture making these in various sizes using
    various shapes.

    Perfect decoration for summer dinning out on the deck or in the yard!

  • winterbeach 27 Jul, 2008

    Ugly, dirt catcher.