After completing placemat purses as shown in Threads, I lost interest in them until a fellow ASG member showed a whole new way to use placemats for purses. Instead of sewing seams, her method had you butting the sides of the placemat and zig-zagging them together. Then you make two cuffs and end up with one central pocket and two exterior pockets... one on the front and one on the back. Straps can be added as well as various closures. Here's what I came up with: (crappy picture... colors are much nicer!)
The best placemats for this method are identical on both sides so you can have a foldover on the exterior pockets. None of mine were identical on both sides so I did not add this feature. My placemats were pretty plain so I added the trim on both the red and blue ones.
The red and blue ones had their long sides joined while the peach one had the short sides joined.
How to use these?
The peach one just happens to be the right size for my Kindle. The blue is becoming a travel sewing tool kit and the red one... not so sure how I will use it... maybe as a water bottle carrier, or for a conference ID badge, or for a passport case or for a quick run to the grocery store. The possibilties are almost endless especially when you start exploring the possibility of additonal ticket pockets, embroidery and other embellishments.
Take a placemat out of your linen drawer and play around with it. It might be a cute purse as well as a way to keep a mess off the table.
Next - some failed placemat tote bags and maybe one success - stay tuned!.