How to Repurpose Old Placemats

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Recycling has become a given in the 21st century. Every year, more people are coming up with ways to cut the amount of trash they add to their local landfills. While once restricted to paper, plastic and glass, today’s recycling has expanded to virtually everything for which a “repurpose” can be found. Creative individuals are using their imaginations, along with their actions and heartfelt wishes, to make a better world. Not long ago, you might have discarded old placemats as items that could not be reused. Today, instead of tossing them away, industrious people are finding ways to put them to new use.

Things You'll Need

  • Old placemats
  • Needle and thread or sewing machine
  • Glue

Wash the placemats, following the instructions on their tags.

Stitch multiple fabric placemats of the same type, color and pattern together to make a runner for a coffee table, television stand or other piece of furniture.

Take fabric placemats apart and repurpose the fabric to become a part of a patchwork tablecloth, table runner or chair covers. The fabric can even be used in patchwork quilts.

Sew the placemats into throw pillows for a child’s playroom.

Sew different types and styles of placemats together to make an unusual wall hanging for a kitchen or dining area.

Put the old placemats in a child’s room for him to use when he is doing craft projects.

Lay a placemat on the bathroom vanity counter. Roll up some hand towels and tie them with ribbon. Place them on top of the placements along with other vanity items like soap, hand cream or tissues.

Use old plastic placemats in outdoor dining areas or on patio side tables. They won’t be destroyed by inclement weather.

Donate old plastic placemats to a local nursing home for use by residents who must eat in their rooms instead of the dining area. It will make them feel a bit more "at home."

Tips & Warnings

  • Check placemats for stains before deciding how to reuse them.
  • Read the labels on the placemats for possible safety or care issues that may affect your repurposing.
  • Don't put plastic placemats in areas that are close to an open flame. If the placemats catch fire, the noxious fumes could be as dangerous as the fire itself.
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