Create Thanksgiving Placemats using Decoupage and Personalized with Vinyl
I made these placemats for my Thanksgiving table from scrapbook paper and die cut vinyl. I used some canvas scraps that I had on hand as my base, but this would be a great project to repurpose used placemats from the bottom of your closet or the thrift store. You just need to make sure that the material you use for your base is compatible with decoupage glue. Scuff up slick surfaces using a Scotch Brite pad first or perform a test if you are concerned that your paper may not adhere well to the surface.
Apply a coat of gesso to the canvas material or use pre-gessoed canvas. Rough cut a piece of canvas about 13x19 inches for each placemat.
Prepare the following pieces from scrapbook paper for each mat: (1) 4x12 inch from patterned paper, (1) 2x12 inch from solid or near solid paper, and (1) 12x12 inch sheet of patterned paper.
Glue the paper to the canvas using decoupage glue or matte medium. Brush a layer of medium or decoupage glue over the canvas beneath each piece. Lay a paper strip on the wet glue and smooth it in place with your hand. Brush more glue on top of the strip.
Use an old gift card or similar tool (that acts like a squeegee) to press the strip firmly to the canvas and remove excess medium. As long as the medium is wet on top of the strip, you can also use a damp finger to press the paper well to the canvas. Work from the center of the paper to the outside to avoid air bubbles becoming trapped beneath the paper. If you notice an air bubble later, however, you can use a sharp craft knife to cut a small slit in the paper and work some additional glue into the hole to remove it.
Butt consecutive papers edge to edge as neatly as possible. When all the pieces are glued in place, allow the paper and canvas to dry.
Trim the excess canvas from the around the edge of the placemat using sharp scissors.
You may wish to apply a coat of water-based polyurethane varnish to the front and back of each placemat for durability. Decoupage glue like Mod Podge can also be used as a protective top coat.
Select a Thanksgiving design from Cricut Access to use as an accent on the placemat. Cut the design from your choice of vinyl or foil. Weed the design and transfer it to the placemat using transfer paper. You may choose to layer the Thanksgiving design with additional paper or vinyl.
If you'd like, outline the design and middle paper strip using a gold paint pen.
And that’s that! No need to settle for mass manufactured placemats when you can create your own unique mats for any holiday celebration – just choose papers to complement the season.