I have been wanting to make some washable placemats for a while now as I absolutely hate wiping down the table after the kids have eaten. I'm not sure what it is but they make a huge mess and the food always seems to harden and become a nightmare to get off. I figure that with a washable set, all the liquid spills (of which there are many!) will be absorbed and most of the time they will just need a quick shake off and then every few days, a hot wash in the washing machine. I am hoping their McDonalds and Nemo vinyl placemats will no longer be needed now. :-) I bought this Amy Butler 'In Stitches' book at Liberty's in London on our last trip and have read it many times but never done any of the projects. I simplified the pattern a lot (though being a placemat, it wasn't exactly a difficult project) and just used some fabric I already had (Camille, the white backing is made from the fabric I got from the "garage sale" at Nana's!), filled them with a layer of wadding and top-stitched around the edges. Hopefully they can withstand the rigours of messy childhood meatimes!