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Project

Pocket Knives (and More)

Introduction

Keep silverware and napkins in one place for picnics and other meals on the go. Oilcloth is the ideal material for this pocket project; it won't fray, plus it can be wiped clean easily.

Materials

  • Oilcloth 
  • Scissors
  • Sewing machine

Steps

  1. Step 1

    Start with a 9-by-10-inch rectangle in your favorite pattern (we went with a mix of stars, stripes, and gingham). Fold in half vertically.

  2. Step 2

    Make a slightly diagonal slit, about 3 inches long, just above the midway point. Stitch the long side and bottom closed, about 1/8 inch from the edge. Leave the top open for napkins, and use the front pocket for utensils.

Source
Martha Stewart Living, July/August 2007

Reviews (47)

  • cupcakegirlz 21 Jun, 2012

    I'm sorry,but what is the point of the oil-cloth?!
    just use like an old pillow case, cut it up and sew it(and its much easier to sew) and stick it in the washing machine if it gets dirty!!!!!!!!

  • CLAUDIAVEGA 8 Jul, 2011

    In my country we use the Metric system, I really appreciate if you write both measures.

  • joeliz 27 Jul, 2010

    does anyone know where there is a video of this utensil pocket?

  • lhetterick 4 Jun, 2010

    Here's a no-sew idea. Cut out the back pockets from old jeans you can't wear anymore (after you wash them, of course). Tuck in a bandanna (to use as a napkin) and your silverware, and you're good to go!

  • saskatchewangirl 3 Jun, 2010

    I agree, another thing to clean. I have seen the pocket napkin and love it.

  • llequire1 3 Jun, 2010

    I just throw the dirty oil clothe in the dishwasher or washing machine....very easy clean up with minimal staining from the dirty silverware stored after use on picnic

  • mcdonade 3 Jun, 2010

    Rather than having one more thing to make and clean, I'd rather see this project as a napkin fold that includes the silverware pocket. Once the silverware is out of the oilcloth and the napkin is on a lap, the oilcloth pocket is just taking up space. Cloth napkins made in those same cute patterns for the occasion would be more practical.

  • lynnemiller 17 Aug, 2009

    here's a link to a website that has lots of oilcloth. you can buy it buy the yard or the roll.

    http://www.fashionfabricsclub.com/catalog_items.aspx?TypID=142

  • guapomarx 13 Aug, 2009

    I order my oilcloth at oilclothalley.com very affordable and comes quick also a good assortment to choose from

  • diva2martha 10 Aug, 2009

    Hey is oil cloth that plastic fabric you can get at hardware stores. You know the somewhat tacky plastic table cloth stuff?

  • alicerules41 10 Aug, 2009

    Hi can any one tell me where I can find Oil cloth. They dont sell it Joannes or Hancocks or even Walmart Thank you. I live in Idaho, USA

  • AnnettaParks 10 Aug, 2009

    Woodydotter, there's a pressure foot made of teflon that is perfect for oilcloth....letting it slide along as you sew. Just perfect. I've used mine a lot, making tote bags from oilcloth. So many things to make.

  • jansquires 10 Aug, 2009

    Why not incorporate a placemat into the project just adding 18" more of oil cloth, roll it up and tie with a ribbon.

  • woodydotter 10 Aug, 2009

    Is there a trick to machine sewing with oilcloth? I haven't yet been able to master it.

  • JudyPatoodie 10 Aug, 2009

    My local JoAnn store carries oilcloth.

  • deborahh3 10 Aug, 2009

    Where do you purchase oilcloth?

  • emisol 12 Jul, 2009

    Please let me know where could I buy these particular star and stripes oilcloth.

  • sunshine 1 Jul, 2008

    This was a great idea that I was able to put together before our first camping trip this year. I did change a it a bit. I added ties to the sides to secure the silverware and put the napkin behind the silverware to keep it clean. Then you just roll it up and you are ready to go.

  • lisakd 30 Jun, 2008

    Hi TrinaM,I just looked on your profile. Im a homeschooler as well with 6 children :-) thanks for your comment.

  • cajunjewels 27 Jun, 2008

    I think this idea is wonderful. I am going to make some of these for my picnic basket!
    Cajunjewelsc

  • Grandmaruth 25 Jun, 2008

    Would it be easier to insert the napkin if the front top was also cut just a bit (on the diagonal or straight across)? Just a thought. A colorful and neat idea!

  • MsKelly 25 Jun, 2008

    I believe, originally oilcloth was made with linseed oil and paint.
    Modern versions are made of plastic or vinyl woven with cotton.

  • PinkTrees 25 Jun, 2008

    I would imagine you can create this with paper too. you can either stitch through the paper or use glue. to reinforce where the cutlery goes you can apply a little piece of tape or for a more patriotic look use flag or star stickers

  • TrinaM 25 Jun, 2008

    Dear lisakd,
    Oil cloth is like the plastic table cloth stuff you can buy from Spotlight or Para rubber but heavier, the same weight as those old oil coats farmers wear but not oily to touch, I'm a kiwi too

  • lisakd 24 Jun, 2008

    I am a New Zealander can someone tell whaf oilcloth is please?

  • dppresley 24 Jun, 2008

    You can get oilcloth at Jack's Country Store... they have really neat stuff!! They have a great selection and the shipping price is good, too! Good Luck!!

  • PCA 24 Jun, 2008

    I have found a nice assortment of oilcloth at denverfabrics.com. Try them, they ship fast and are reasonably priced. Have fun.

  • PCA 24 Jun, 2008

    I have found a nice assortment of oilcloth at denverfabrics.com. Try them, they ship fast and are reasonably priced. Have fun.

  • rara4h 24 Jun, 2008

    you can make your own oil cloth by choosing a fabric that you like and getting heat n' bond iron on vynil at your local fabric store.

  • antym 24 Jun, 2008

    What a great idea. Easy to make, easy to clean and fun to look at. Esp. when one's grandson was born on the 4th of July.../d

  • nightowl 24 Jun, 2008

    I can see a whole picnic basket thing going on here that keeps eveything dry too.

  • bearieid 24 Jun, 2008

    I pickup Oil Cloth in the remnants bin at my local craft store (Joannes). It is usually less than n n regular price.

  • bennyjetz 24 Jun, 2008

    Denver Fabrics has a nice selection (about $6/yd) several cute patterns.
    http://www.denverfabrics.com/pages/static/oilcloth.htm

  • stoney17 24 Jun, 2008

    You could use outdoor fabric that is used for seat cushions and tablecloths. Found some with a cute daisy pattern at Walmart and it was $2.97 a yard 56" wide. Doesn't unravel and has white backing of the same fabric so it is smooth unlike the fuzzy stuff on some vinyl tablecloths. The slit is where the silverware goes in. This would be easy to roll up and put a rubber band around for carrying in your picnic basket or cooler.

  • dianetavegia 24 Jun, 2008

    Out of season table cloths would work well AND save bunches of money! All those red, white and blues in the store today will be on sale by July 5th.

  • imayummymummy 24 Jun, 2008

    I love this idea but am having a hard time finding good oilcloth at a good price. Any suggestions?

  • lilyloreh 24 Jun, 2008

    Behappysmile...if you take the rectangle of oilcloth (9x10) with the long sides as the top and bottom, fold it in half down the middle bringin one side to the other so now you have a 9x5 piece of fabric. Cut the slit on the one side. Sew the 5 inch bottom and the open 9 inch side. hope that helps.

  • sherrimac 24 Jun, 2008

    oilcloth can be bought inexpensively online and there are some darling patterns. Shop around or look on ebay.

  • behappysmile 24 Jun, 2008

    How does it fold, please give a little more visual direction. I like this, but need more info. Thank u

  • DianeLPM 24 Jun, 2008

    For oilcloth for this project I am going to go look for an oilcloth or vinyl tablecloth at K Mart, CVS, etc. and hope I find an inexpensive one in a seasonal/holiday print. It will be flocked on the background but that it OK; the napkin may stick inside a bit. The other idea is to buy any fabric print you like and then buy the iron on vinyl from a fabric store. I have bought some from JoAnns and it worked well to make placements. I would only coat one side, not both as I did then.

  • DianeLPM 24 Jun, 2008

    For oilcloth for this project I am going to go look for an oilcloth or vinyl tablecloth at K Mart, CVS, etc. and hope I find an inexpensive one in a seasonal/holiday print. It will be flocked on the background but that it OK; the napkin may stick inside a bit. The other idea is to buy any fabric print you like and then buy the iron on vinyl from a fabric store. I have bought some from JoAnns and it worked well to make placements. I would only coat one side, not both as I did then.

  • hooverkm 24 Jun, 2008

    Yes, I don't understand the slit either. Can you please explain?

  • firesidefolkart 24 Jun, 2008

    Also where is the slit cut? I cannot visualise this.

  • firesidefolkart 24 Jun, 2008

    Where on earth does a canadian find oilcloth? I found vanilla paste so I know there is hope!

  • nightowl 24 Jun, 2008

    I do better visual, I can't imagine how to do this because the colors are dark, I can't see the stitches.

  • TriciaJay 24 Jun, 2008

    I might do them and add more material at the end along with a string to wrap them up. Fancy!

  • nightowl 24 Jun, 2008

    I was thinking of making an oil clothe pouch for sandwiches too. Would that be safe if a zip lock bag first