Thursday, 14 August 2014

Thanks to Narelle at CookCleanCraft for the inspiration tutorial on a playmat. This is my first and although it took a while, I'm looking forward to making another, perhaps one like Amanda's

I started off with Narelle's tutorial but as I didn't have enough green felt I chose yellow for the base which actually has come out really well. 

As you can see from the pictures I based most of my platymat on Narelle's (it being my first), but I did come up with Tesco's, a postbox and a football pitch and the question mark flap with a rectangle of a punched pocket to slip a photo in.

Fire station and petrol station.
zoo and hospital (with helipad) 

Tescos and Lake (which is next to the zoo)

 Football pitch and police station - I'm not expecting a riot, I just happened to put the football pitch in the only space left which was next to the police station

Postbox and car wash

construction site (pretty chuffed with this one) and the 'who's there' flap 

 car park (opposite Tesco)

Trees and flowers and hosues (I know they have no windows, I tried positioning them with windows, but it looked too messy)

Narelle's tutorial said to use tacky craft glue. I don't know if that's an american term but I only had PVA, so that's what I started off with. 

Unfortunately, some of the pieces of felt didn't stay stuck and I was really wary of letting a small child loose on the playmat and so decided to sew it all. 

That took another day. Then I used my new overlocker to sew the sides, then it went a bit loopy and I gave up for the moment and switched to a hot glue gun for the outside house sides, tip: this works best when you glue a small line and then press the felt together; I didn't press it to begin with and I think it needs that extra pressure, just when it's at the first stage of drying. I scorched my fingers a little but it was worth it!

annoyingly, my velcro tab went over my nice tree

open one side...

then the other...

And I didn't realise until I had opened it out, but the velcro tabs are hidden by the opened out playmat, excellent!

So, if I made another playmat I would...

  • avoid PVA for felt, it's useless, and definitely not baby-durable
  • sew as I go (each piece, not get a whole section ready, then sew)
  • try and be more inventive with the road system - a roundabout or traffic light system perhaps?
  • I saw someone else who'd used black acrylic paint for the roads which would be very durable (more than felt+PVA anyway)
If you'd like to make your own, follow Narelle's tutorial here.

Feel free to comment/add any suggestions for improvements on future playmats.


  1. What a cute play mat! The yellow is bright and happy, and I love the ? section for a photo. PVA glue is too thin to use on fabric. Tacky craft glue or fabric glue doesn't soak into the fabric and sticks much better. Hot glue is another good option, although I burn my fingers too much (but sewing works too!). Thanks for sharing my tutorial!

    1. Thanks for sharing it to begin with! I'd never heard of tacky glue before but have just googled it and bought myself some. I've just been hot glue gun-ing something else and burning my fingers periodically so I'll look forward to trying tacky glue with the next project. Do you find it's durable enough then?