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Thread: I need help on how to make a play rug or mat

  1. #1
    Super Member Corky's Avatar
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    Question I need help on how to make a play rug or mat

    I have a really cute piece of fabric, looks like a town with roads and buildings. I want to make it into a play mat or rug for my grandson. I have done the research, but i would like to hear personal projects and tutorials. Questions

    1. should I fuse it onto a backing then bind it? And will that be tiff enough for him to crawl on or will it bunch up too much?
    2. Is there a product to paint on it to stiffen it? Recommendations? If it is stiff, can it be rolled up or folded for storage?
    3 thinking of using denim or canvas for a backing. Suggestions?
    You have brains in your head.
    You have feet in your shoes.
    You can steer yourself any direction you choose.
    You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the guy who’ll decide where to go. (Dr. Seuss)

  2. #2
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    I'm guessing you want it more sturdy than just batting and backing and quilting would do?

  3. #3
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    I made a railroad themed play mat about a year ago (my first) and the grandsons still play with it. I used a cute panel, and then mitered railroad track printed fabric around it. After that I put a couple more borders for contrast. I then used a WalMart cotton mattress pad and a coordinating cotton backing. The mattress pad gives a lot more cushion and durability than batting would. I just made a street scene one for Christmas and mitered a highway around the center panel. I used a tone on tone blackish fabric and did a satin-stitch center stripe down the highway. I sorta free-motion quilted both of them on the center panel. I say sorta because I am such a beginner that an experienced quilter would cringe to see them. I did stitch in the ditch quilting on the RR track, highway and borders. I think they looked kinda cute and my son said the year old one is a good as when they got it.
    Novie
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  4. #4
    Super Member Corky's Avatar
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    Yes, maybe just a wee bit stiffer/sturdier. I want him to be able to run his cars on it without having to straighten it out all the time.

    Quote Originally Posted by nycquilter View Post
    I'm guessing you want it more sturdy than just batting and backing and quilting would do?
    You have brains in your head.
    You have feet in your shoes.
    You can steer yourself any direction you choose.
    You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the guy who’ll decide where to go. (Dr. Seuss)

  5. #5
    Super Member Corky's Avatar
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    I suppose if I quilted it then it would lay flat, I was hoping to fuse it to a stiffer backing to avoid quilting it.

    Love your projects, do you have pics to share?

    Quote Originally Posted by Novice.for.now View Post
    I made a railroad themed play mat about a year ago (my first) and the grandsons still play with it. I used a cute panel, and then mitered railroad track printed fabric around it. After that I put a couple more borders for contrast. I then used a WalMart cotton mattress pad and a coordinating cotton backing. The mattress pad gives a lot more cushion and durability than batting would. I just made a street scene one for Christmas and mitered a highway around the center panel. I used a tone on tone blackish fabric and did a satin-stitch center stripe down the highway. I sorta free-motion quilted both of them on the center panel. I say sorta because I am such a beginner that an experienced quilter would cringe to see them. I did stitch in the ditch quilting on the RR track, highway and borders. I think they looked kinda cute and my son said the year old one is a good as when they got it.
    You have brains in your head.
    You have feet in your shoes.
    You can steer yourself any direction you choose.
    You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the guy who’ll decide where to go. (Dr. Seuss)

  6. #6
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    I made one by purchasing an area rug that was larger than the panel... then i put the panel in the middle, measured and added 'borders' to make it close to the same size... then i used elmer's glue to glue to the back of the rug (elmers works fine with pressure during drying and it will pull off whenever i need to wash, which hasn't happened yet... it's a year and a half and it's fine, it doesn't really get people walking on that side... but i used all kinds of fabric covered stuff in my nursery and it pulls off, gets washed, and glued back on... works fine... ... used the same glue to put a thin woven braid over the edges (all still inside the outside shape of the rug..... when you get it glued, put lots of weight on top and let it dry for several days.... during grandchild visits, it is panel up... when they're not here, it is rug side up, under my coffee table.... the table becomes a mountain with ramps during DGC visits (those hotwheel tracks) placed at the end of the playmat side, with duct tape, which was their idea... so it's all good... do what you have to do... the backing on my rug is plenty stiff for lego buildings and cars and even an occasional tiny log cabin....

  7. #7
    Junior Member acesgame's Avatar
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    I have made a couple of the cheater panels that are race track and construction zone. They were approx. 36 x 44. by keeping them small they don't actually sit on them to play and they stay flat just quilted. I did use this polyester batting from walmart that is about 3.77 per yard and feels alittle stiffer felt. you might use oil cloth as the backing. It is super sturdy and would add to the stiffness without making it hard. Just a thought.
    Just my 2 cents and probably not worth that much but I ALWAYS have an opinion!

  8. #8
    Super Member GrannieAnnie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Corky View Post
    I have a really cute piece of fabric, looks like a town with roads and buildings. I want to make it into a play mat or rug for my grandson. I have done the research, but i would like to hear personal projects and tutorials. Questions

    1. should I fuse it onto a backing then bind it? And will that be tiff enough for him to crawl on or will it bunch up too much?
    2. Is there a product to paint on it to stiffen it? Recommendations? If it is stiff, can it be rolled up or folded for storage?
    3 thinking of using denim or canvas for a backing. Suggestions?

    The denim or canvas back sounds good. I've never worried about the play rug bunching.
    HOWEVER
    One solution might be to iron on craft backing on the inside side of the top and the bottom. Not all over, but maybe 4-6 inches just inside what will be your stitching line.
    Bad Spellers of the World
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  9. #9
    Super Member Corky's Avatar
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    That is an intriquing idea! I like it.
    You have brains in your head.
    You have feet in your shoes.
    You can steer yourself any direction you choose.
    You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the guy who’ll decide where to go. (Dr. Seuss)

  10. #10
    Senior Member lenette's Avatar
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    I wonder if a paint-on laminate would be good for that?
    Lenette

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