Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Stenciled Holiday Place Settings

I love seasonal decorating. But I'm also lazy short on time, so I really like having holiday decor that I can use for more than one occasion. I am currently in need of some holiday table decor that I can use for Thanksgiving, Christmas and maybe even into late winter.  So when a big box of paints and stencils from Plaid's Martha Stewart line showed up on my porch, I knew exactly what I was going to use it for!

Holiday Place Settings for Four
A tablecloth, placemats and napkins

Supplies Needed
  • 1 twin flat sheet in red
  • 1 twin flat sheet in taupe
  • Matching thread
  • Stencils
  • Stencil Adhesive Spray
  • Masking Tape
  • Paint brushes and pouncing sponges
  • Paint (all are from the Martha Stewart Craft line)
    • Multi-Surface Metallic in Copper
    • Multi-Surface Pearl in Mother of Pearl
    • Multi-Surface Glitter in Sugar Cube
    • Multi-Surface Satin in Habanero
    • Multi-Surface Glitter in Garnet

Make the Placemats and Napkins
I could have purchased napkins and placemats that were already ready for decorating but making them was the best bargain. For $10 (flat sheets are $5 each at Walmart) I got enough fabric to make a tablecloth, 4 placemats, 4 napkins and have plenty of red fabric leftover to use for something else.  In general, this is one of my favorite ways to buy plain cotton fabric as the sheets are rather wide (about 68") and give you just about 3 yards of fabric bringing your cost-per-yard to about $1.60.

Prep Fabric
As mentioned above, I used twin sized flat sheets from Walmart. You'll need one in red and one in taupe. Wash and dry the sheets to get out any finishing chemicals in the fabric and to pre-shrink.

Cut Your Pieces
For the placemats, I just traced around a placemat I already had, giving myself about 1/2" buffer on each side. My rectangles ended up being 14.5 x 16.5 inches (you will need 8). The Napkins were 17" square (you will need 4) and were cut from the end of the sheet. The rest of the sheet will be used for the tablecloth.

Assemble The Placemats
Load your machine with matching red thread and using a long straight stitch, stitch all the way around the placemat, leaving an opening on one side in order to turn it right side out (use the yellow line as your guide).

To make the finished corners nice and crisp, clip the corners off at an angle (be careful not to cut through your stitches!) before turning the placemats right side out. Use your iron to press the placemats nice and flat and tuck in the edge where the opening was. Top stitch around the edge of the placemats using a medium length straight stitch, about 1/2 inch in from the edge.

Hem the Napkins and Tablecloth
Fold the edges of the napkins under twice and press with your iron. Repeat with the raw edge of the tablecloth (if you are using a twin sheet, the other three edges should already have a factory hem). Swap out your thread to match your napkin fabric and using a medium length straight stitch, stitch as close to the edge of the fold as possible.

Stencil Time!
The stencil pack I used came with several stencils. I chose a bird circled by a wreath for the placemats and a small matching leaf motif for the napkins.

Prep Your Stencils
Cut out the stencils you want to use and test their placement on the fabric. Once you know where you'd like them to go, flip them over so the part that will be against the fabric when you are painting is up. Move them to a covered work surface.

Grab the stencil adhesive spray and shake it really well. Holding the can about 8-10 inches from the stencils, lightly spray the back of the stencils until the surface is covered. Let the adhesive dry until it is no longer wet and is tacky to the touch.

Paint the Placemats
Grab a placemat and place the stencil where you'd like. I placed mine right in the center. Press down all around the stencil, paying particular attention to small and detailed sections, to make sure the stencil is well adhered so that paint can't creep underneath. Use masking tape to give yourself an additional buffer zone on any parts of the stencil that come close to the edge.

Squeeze some of the "Copper" colored Multi-Surface Metallic paint onto your palate. Dip the working end of a pouncing sponge in your paint and dab it around on your palate so there isn't any excess on the sponge. (I love the Martha Stewart pouncing sponges. They are contoured to make them easier to hold and they feel really good in your hand). Pounce your sponge around the wreath, being careful not to go over the edge or inside the bird. Come back and fill in smaller areas the big sponge missed with a wood handled foam brush if necessary.

Next, using the same dab and pounce technique, use a wood handled foam brush to lightly fill in the bird with "Mother of Pearl" colored Multi-Surface Pearl paint. Immediately following the pearl paint, use a different foam brush to lightly dab some "Sugar Cube" colored Multi-Surface Glitter paint over the top of the bird as well.

Double check to make sure you got enough paint in all the little nooks and crannies and if it looks good, peel up your stencil (it's important to do this while the paint is still wet). Looking good!

Now repeat the previous steps with the other three placemats.

Paint the Napkins
Since the napkins are only 1 layer of fabric thick, make sure you place something underneath the fabric while you are working to protect your table from any paint that might seep through.  

Grab a napkin and turn it so the corner is pointing toward you. Place your small stencil in the corner and press down to make sure it well adhered.

Get a brush and use the same dab and pounce technique as before to fill the stencil in with the "Habanero" colored Multi-Surface satin paint. I used a regular paint brush here but you could use a foam brush or a sponge. Once it's filled in, lightly go back over it using the "Garnet" colored Multi-Surface Glitter paint.

Peel away your stencil and smile. Repeat the process with the other 3 napkins.

Now that your painting is done, set your placemats and napkins out flat so they can dry. One of the great things about the Multi-Surface paint is that there are no additional steps or extra things you have to add in order to make it fabric friendly.  You do want to make sure to clean up your brushes and stencils right away, though, as wet paint is a bazillion times easier to clean up than dried on paint.

Set the Table!
To set the table, I first laid out the tablecloth I made and then layered a large piece of burlap from my stash over the top for texture. I only have 2 napkin rings, so I put half of the napkins through napkin rings and the other half were tucked into the wine glasses with the pretty part peeking out of the top. I added some candles and pumpkins for Thanksgiving but these are all easy things to trade out when it comes time for Christmas dinner!

This post is brought to you Plaid's Martha Stewart line of paint and stencils. I received product and payment for this post. All opinions expressed are 100% mine. You can check out Plaid's full Martha Stewart product line here

As is my custom, I'm sharing this great project with...
* Made by You Monday on Skip to my Lou * Get Your Craft On at Today's Creative Blog * Show and Tell at Blue Cricket Design * Tip Me Tuesday from The Tip Junkie * Freshmen Friday at Home Savvy A-Z *  Frugal Friday at The Shabby Nest * The Project Parade at the DIY Showoff * Holiday Link Party from Momnivore's Dilemma * Friday Free For All at Young and Crafty * Creative Bloggers Party and Hop at Homemaker on a Dime * Sunday Showcase Party at Under the Table and Dreaming *  Flaunt it Friday at Chic on a Shoestring *  Weekend Show Off Party at Ladybird Lane * I'm Lovin It at Tidy Mom * The Holiday Link Party at What Che Said * Handmade Christmas at Cup of Delight * Homemade Year at Blissful and Domestic *

Check out the other great projects in this campaign:

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