It's a reversible placemat. No, it's a party activity. Wait... you're both right! Our party placemats feature fun and festive fabric from Patty Young's new Playdate collection on one side, and Über cool chalk cloth on the other. Similar to oilcloth, chalk cloth is heavy yet pliable and waterproof. You can write on it with regular or liquid chalk and then wipe it clean with a damp cloth or baby wipe. We gave each party guest his/her own box of chalk to play with, keeping little hands busy while we set up for more fun and games.
With our focus on kids and birthdays this week, I found myself dwelling on fabric designed for children. Kids have an amazing, and often vivid memory for details of clothing, bedding, curtains, books and wallpaper. Ever try to skip a page when reading a book to a child? I can still visualize the circus wallpaper in my room that my mother tells me was gone by the time I was three. The light aqua background and colorful tents and animals left its mark, and I'm still partial to the mix of pale aqua with brights. It makes me realize that choosing fabrics your child likes may create a life-long happy memory.
This is the first time I have used an organic cotton fabric. Organics are a still a small percentage of the quilting weight cottons available, and almost twice the cost. But, I figure organic fabric will grow in the marketplace similarly to organic food. Remember how difficult it was to reliably find organic groceries? And they were almost prohibitively expensive. A decade later, it's how I shop. There's a great selection and milk is no longer $8 for a half gallon. So, I was pretty thrilled to find emerging organic fabric companies debuting high-quality and colorful fabrics as well as some pretty edgy designs. These summery box-pleat pillows made from organic cotton make a powerful statement: We are pesticide free!