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How To Make Patchwork Denim Placemats

This is a simple tutorial on how to make hexagon patchwork denim placemats from repurposed blue jeans.

Making these patchwork denim placemats was what I call a slow craft. This was because they were handstitched. You could make them quicker on the machine if you wanted to.

I find it hard to sit still and watch telly in the evenings unless I have something to do with my hands. Simple hand sewing tasks, such as making denim patchwork is a perfect telly watching craft. That’s because the craft is very simple, it doesn’t require much concentration.

Even if you aren’t much of a seamstress, I think you should give this denim upcycle ago. The sewing is very basic and can all be done by hand.

However, if you really don’t like sewing, then I have plenty of no-sew upcycled denim projects on the blog too. I even have a tutorial for some no-sew denim and felt fabric placemats. I even have a tutorial for a denim fabric fruit bowl that would look fabulous on the table with these mats.

jeans scraps for patchwork denim placemats

Hexagon Patchwork Denim

Not only are these mats made from repurposed patchwork denim, but they have “hex appeal”, in that they are hexagon-shaped. I love a hexagon craft.

It’s not just me that loves a hexagon, but they are also very common in nature. Hexagons are a very efficient shape. Just think of the interlocking cells of a beehive and the crystals of a snowflake.  The Giant’s Causeway in Northern Island is a geographical feature composed of 40,000 hexagonal columns of basalt. 

I already have some hexagons in my dining room with my denim patchwork chairs, which were also hand-sewn. These hexagon patchwork denim mats will really complement them.

Make a gorgeous denim patchwork chair using old jeans and English Paper Piecing hexagons full tutorial.

Six equilateral triangles placed side by side makes a hexagon shape. It’s the triangle that makes the patchwork.

My star wars loving family think that the denim mats look like the wings of Tie Fighters.

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What You Need For Denim Placemats

quilters triangle ruler

How To Do Patchwork Denim

1.. Using the triangle ruler or a template, cut out 6 denim triangles. For the best result cut out the denim shapes from pairs of jeans in different shades of indigo.

cutting out denim patchwork triangles
cut out triangles denim
jeans patchwork triangles

2. Next, cut out 6 paper triangles. These triangles will be the size of the patchwork triangles without the margin for sewing. So they will be smaller than the denim triangles.

Stick the paper triangle to the wrong side of the cut denim shapes using double-sided sticky tape.

paper triangles
sticking paper triangle to denim

3. Next, iron down the denim seams for each side of the fabric triangles. Use a hot iron.

Ironed triangle patchwork

4. Next, pin two denim triangles together, along the edge with the flat point. Then hand stitch these two pieces together along the hem crease. Do not stitch through the paper.

Hand stitching the triangles
Two triangles stitched together

5. Repeat the last stage by stitching another patchwork denim triangle to the shape. Carry on until all six triangles are stitched together to form a hexagon. Then, remove the paper triangles from the back.

Stitching shapes together.
Making a patchwork denim placemat in a hexagon shape

Backing the Denim Placemats

6. Next, to add a pop of color to my denim placemats, I used a colorful fabric to back them and added a decorative hexagon in the center.

The center hexagon is also great for hiding the center where the six points meet. This can be difficult to get neat.

7. First, use the ruler to make a hexagon pattern for the back of the placemat. This hexagon will be larger than the patchwork denim one. At the same time cut out a small hexagon shape with 3.5cm sides.

Making hexagon paper template

8. Use these templates to cut out two fabric hexagons, one little one and a big one. I used a stiff upholstery fabric that I had in my stash. It was the same fabric I had used to back my woven denim pillows.

Top tip: If you are using a thinner fabric, you might want to think about adding a layer of wadding to the placemats.

backing fabric for placemats

8. Next, stick the small paper triangle onto the wrong side of the small fabric hexagon and iron down the seams. Then, tack around the fabric edges, (as I did with my hexagon pillows). Then, remove the paper.

paper hexagon
stitched denim hexagon

9. Next, hand stitch the small fabric hexagon to the centre of the patchwork denim. I just use tiny little stitches right on the edge of the hexagons.

Not only does the center hexagon add a bit of color to the denim placemat but it also hides any mistakes you may have made in matching the points of the triangle patches.

Stitching the center hexagon

10. Next, to add the fabric backing, place the denim patchwork on top of the wrong side of the patterned fabric. Make sure it is in the center. There should be a couple of centimeters of fabric showing all the way around the placemat.

Fold this visible edge in half towards the denim and iron it down. Next, fold the edge over again, iron it down and pin it to the denim patchwork. You will end up with a nice fabric trimmed edge to the patchwork denim.

Pining the fabric around the placemat

11. Finally, using small stitches, hand sew this fabric edge to the denim hexagon and then remove the pins.

patchwork denim hexagon placemats
patchwork denim hexagon placemats
hexagon jean placemat and plate

More Hexagons and Denim Crafts

I love how these patchwork denim placemats have turned out and I’ve really enjoyed making them. As I’ve already mentioned, they have given me something to do with my hands whilst watching TV.

I’ve made two so far but plan to have six in total by the end of the week. They go great with my denim patchwork chairs and denim table runner.

I really like the hexagon design. I’m tempted to scale up these mats to make a denim blue jean rug. All I would need to do is to make the patchwork triangle much larger.

If you are looking for more upcycled hexagon crafts then check out my patchwork repurposed sweater blanket and denim pinboard. For more crafts using old jeans, check out the comprehensive A to Z of denim crafts.

For more denim patchwork shapes other than hexagons, check out my quilted denim star decorations. They would also make a great design for table mats. You can find many more DIY placemat ideas here.

Hexagon placemats with denim patchwork
Yield: Hexagonal patchwork denim placemats

How To Make Patchwork Denim Placemats

DIY patchwork denim placemats

Use your leftover denim scraps from old jeans to make lovely patchwork placemats. These placemats are a unique hexagonal shape made from triangles of denim in different shades of indigo. This creates a cool pattern.

Prep Time 20 minutes
Active Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 20 minutes
Difficulty Easy
Estimated Cost $5

Materials

  • Scraps of denim from old jeans in various shades of indigo.
  • Colorful upholstery fabric scraps
  • Denim thread
  • Double sided sticky tape and paper

Tools

  • Rotary cutter and mat
  • Quilters equilateral triangle ruler 16.5cm
  • Needle

Instructions

  1. Use the quilters ruler and rotary cutter to cut out six denim equaliteral triangles. Make sure you use denim in various shades of indigo.
  2. Cut out smaller paper triangles, so that you have a 5mm seam with the denim.
  3. Stick the paper triangle to the wrong side of the denim triangle. Iron the seams towards the paper.
  4. Next, hand sew the denim triangles to each other. Sew along the ironed crease, joining each triangle one at a time until you have made a hexagon shape. Remove the paper from the back of the patchwork denim hexagon. Making a patchwork denim placemat in a hexagon shape
  5. Cut two hexagons from the colorful backing fabric. One small one for the center of the denim placemat. The larger hexagon is bigger than the denim placemat. Use the quilter's ruler to make the template for the large hexagon.
  6. Iron the seams flat on the small hexagon and hand sew it to the center of the denim patchwork.
  7. Place the denim hexagon on top of the wrong side of the backing fabric hexagon.
  8. Fold the outside edge of the colorful fabric over twice, then iron it flat and pin it to the front of the patchwork denim. Pining the fabric around the placemat
  9. Finally, hand sew this fabric edging all around the hexagon placemat.

Find more sewing crafts here.

Donna @ Modern on Monticello

Thursday 4th of March 2021

I had to smile at the mention of Star Wars. I get that reference from your family. This is a sewing project I can do because I don't have a working sewing machine. Thanks for sharing your posts every week. I look forward to seeing what you will share. #HomeMattersParty

Claire Armstrong

Thursday 4th of March 2021

Thank you so much, yes these can be made easily by hand. If you have ever had any lego Stars Wars sets you'd recognize the Tie Fighter Wings.

Rebecca

Tuesday 2nd of March 2021

Claire, these placemats are so unique! I love upcycled denim projects. Thanks for sharing at Celebrate Your Story! Link Party. You've been featured this week :)

Claire Armstrong

Wednesday 3rd of March 2021

Thank you so much. Me too! I love denim upcycles.

Cecilia

Tuesday 2nd of March 2021

Thanks for sharing your creative placemats at Vintage Charm!

Claire Armstrong

Tuesday 2nd of March 2021

Thank you so much.

Naush Samama

Tuesday 2nd of March 2021

What a cute design ! Thank you for sharing with us at Meraki Link Party. Much Love Naush

Claire Armstrong

Tuesday 2nd of March 2021

Thank you, I just love working with denim.

creativejewishmom/sara

Saturday 27th of February 2021

Love it, as always, Claire! thanks for sharing on craft schooling Sunday!

Claire Armstrong

Saturday 27th of February 2021

Thank you so much, Sara.

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