I made these newspaper placemats as a retirement present for my friend, who I met on my first journalism job more than 20 years ago. She was the cops reporter when I started, and when you went somewhere with her she would point out crime scenes along the way. She got me more interested in cooking and to subscribe to Bon Appetit, which I still do. Her party was great, and I got to visit with people I hadn't seen in decades, and we told lots of stories of my friend. Those were such fun times. I guess because we were young and had the energy to try anything.
I was, of course, stitching these placemats up the night before I flew back to New England for her retirement party! I adapted the pattern from Penny's napkin tutorial at Sew Take A Hike, changing the dimensions to be placemat size instead of napkin size, and using two layers of newspaper fabric so the placemats are reversible. I used solid fabrics from my stash for the border, but because I didn't have enough of one fabric for all the borders, I used a different blue for each.
I'm still plugging away at the Aboriginal blocks. This is what they looked like before I took them off the design wall to work on a Halloween table topper.
Harriet Hargrave and Sharyn Craig's book "The Art of Classic Quiltmaking" for a refresher on mitring.