Many of the items that a baby needs may be expensive to buy in retail stores, but-- with a little creativity--you can make them yourself for a fraction of the cost. If you want a soft, clean play mat for your baby to use for tummy time or other floor play, use this idea from craft expert Cathie Filian to make a no-sew baby play mat with a few fabric store finds. You may wash the play mat for regular use and even customise it to match your baby's nursery theme or your favourite colours.
Cut the 1/2-inch foam to the desired size of your play mat. For a standard size, cut it to 24-by-36 inches.
Wash and dry your fleece fabric to avoid shrinkage. Cut your two pieces of fleece fabric to be 6 inches wider and longer than the foam. If you used 24-by-36 inches for your foam, then your fleece needs to measure 30-by-42 inches.
Lay down one piece of fleece fabric, wrong side up (if it has a wrong side). Center the foam on top of this piece of fleece. Lay the other piece of fleece on top of the foam, right side up (if it has a right side).
Cut a 3-inch square out of each corner, cutting through the fleece layers but not the foam itself.
Cut fringe around all four sides of the play mat. Filian recommends using a yardstick to help you make the fringe on the edges. Position the yardstick on the edge of the foam. Cut in from the edge of the fleece until you meet the yardstick with your scissors. Cut in 1-inch increments so that you have fringe that is approximately 1-inch wide by 3 inches long. Make sure to cut through both layers of fleece each time.
Use an overhand knot to tie the two pieces of fleece together for every strip of fringe. Now your baby play mat is ready for play.
- Try using one piece of fleece with a pattern and the second piece in a coordinating solid.
- To wash your play mat, untie the fleece and wash it. Put the foam back inside and retie. Do not wash the foam itself.