Hobbies: Easy-to-make coasters and placemats

Scripps Howard News ServiceJune 14, 2013 

Use craft foam to create placemats and coasters.


Here’s a great project to keep the kids busy that is easy, doesn’t cost much, and in the end, you can have a nautical-themed summer party.

The designs are from semaphore flags used to spell out messages in the boating world. Visit http://nando.com/b1 to see the inspiration we used to create our flags. Or you can make coasters or placemats that spell out your children’s names, your last name or fun party messages.

You will need

• Sheets of craft foam in colors desired

• Placemats (12 by 18 inches)

• Coasters (4 by 4 inches)

• Foam glue

• Scissors or a paper-cutting board

• Ruler

• Pencil

• Plastic triangle if making squares

Tip: To provide enough stiffness, double up the foam with a solid base of one color. Then, add the flag decor on top, filling it in so there are essentially two complete layers of foam.

Step by step

• For placemats, the base is already cut to size directly from the package at 12 by 18 inches. For coasters, cut bases at 4 inches square.

• Once you determine the nautical-signal-flag design you want to use, cut out your designs to equal the size of your base. Attach using foam glue.

•  Have fun with the more intricate designs. Craft foam is easy to cut with sharp scissors, and the straight lines of most of the designs will come together nicely for you. There are many checkered patterns and only five colors used: white, black, red, blue and yellow. So, if you can purchase your foam in individual pieces, you’ll save money.

• Let your designs dry and put them to good use.

You can create an entire table setting around your new designs using things from around the house. Or, stop by your nearest craft store and pick up some inexpensive nautical accessories like sailboats, lanterns, ship’s wheels or the like.


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