March is the “transition” month. We begin transitioning from winter to spring. I know recently in Killeen the weather says we are already in spring, but mentally my mind thinks March. I begin planning my garden and decorating for spring.

The placemats in my kitchen were red. This is fine for Christmas and Valentines, but frankly, I was growing sick of them. I wanted some with a rustic/farmhouse vibe. After pricing them at stores (why are they so expensive?), I decided to make my own.

This project ranks as one of the easiest ones yet, although it can be a bit time consuming. These are perfect for summer too, as the rope lends to a nautical theme.

Here’s what you need for two placemats:

One roll of rope (I bought mine from Wal-Mart. It was 3/8-inch and 50 feet. It was around $5.)

Hot glue gun

Clear acrylic spray coating (optional)

Start by dabbing a bit of glue on the end of the rope and tightly rolling it. Hold for about a minute to ensure adhesion. This will be the center of your placemat.

Now continue gluing the edge and winding the rope around as you glue. Make sure you put glue all the way around on the rope for added strength.

Stop when your placemats are approximately 13.5 inches in diameter. This seemed to be about half of my spool of rope.

If desired, coat placemat with acrylic spray to add protection from stains. A note of caution: It made the placemats smell weird (like diesel), so I only used it on one.

I didn’t do this, but I think you could spray paint the rope for a different color. I just liked the natural rope look. You could also make coasters using the same technique. I hope you enjoy these!

The next thing I did to brighten our table was make tiny planters out of tin cans. Next time you have canned vegetables, take the label off and clean the can. They make perfect pots!

You will need:

A tin can

Spray paint

Potting soil

Small plants or herbs (I used a six-pack of annuals for four cans.)

Twine or ribbon

After cleaning your can, put holes in the bottom using a hammer/nail or electric drill so water can flow out.

Spray paint the can and let it dry. Put some rocks or pebbles in the bottom of the can for drainage. Put a little soil in the bottom and then add a plant.

Initially, I was going to use herbs, but when I went to purchase them, they looked diseased, so I chose annuals instead. I am pleased with the tiny, bright-colored flowers. They brighten our table nicely.

After the plant is in place, fill in the pockets with potting soil. Tie a bit of twine or ribbon around the planter and you’re finished. Simple, inexpensive, and you even recycled!

Have fun getting your table ready for spring, and be sure to send me pictures of your creativity. Until next time, happy spring decorating.

Kindra Warner is a Herald correspondent. Contact her at

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