Monday, July 4, 2011

Star-Spangled Placemats

This Fourth of July set a stellar table with star-stamped placemats.

Jazz up simple bamboo placemats with handmade cork stamps. Just cut large stars out of cork wall tiles and mount them on scraps of plywood. Then start stamping! Whether you need four or forty, these placemats are fast and fabulous.

(to make 4 placemats)
4 bamboo placemats
2 cork wall tiles, 12"x12" (available at office supply stores)
¼" thick plywood square, 10"x10"
¼" thick plywood square, 6"x6"
Wood glue
White chalk
X-Acto knife
Masking tape
FolkArt craft paint, Cardinal Red, 2 fluid ounces
Small foam paintbrush
Paper plate

Step One
To make the large star stamp, draw a 9-inch star on a cork tile with chalk. For the small star stamp, draw a 5-inch star on a cork tile with chalk. Carefully cut the stars with the X-Acto knife. Glue each cork star rough-side down onto the corresponding plywood square with the wood glue. Weigh down the stamps with books and let cure for 30 minutes.

Step Two
If the bamboo placemats have fabric trim on the edges, cover the fabric with masking tape. Protect your work surface with newspaper and squeeze the red craft paint onto a paper plate. Use the foam brush to dab the paint onto the surface of the large star stamp.

Step Three
Immediately stamp the bamboo placemat with the large star stamp over the lower right-hand corner, so part of the design runs off the edge. Repeat with the small and large stamps to create the three-star design. Use the same technique to stamp all four placemats, alternating the stars for an artsy look.

Land of the Free: For small pieces of plywood, find the scrap pile at your home improvement store. Be sure to ask, but usually the little pieces are free!

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