Disney Princess Play Mat

This was part of our simple handmade Christmas this year, and my desire to get my child to play more without spending a fortune. My daughter has grown up loving all of the Disney princesses and Disney Fairies, so I made up a little map of where they could all play and have adventures in the same world. I actually dreamed this up and laid out a plan on paper before starting. Go ahead and explore below!

Behold: the finished play mat! 

Based on Cinderella’s castle. I based mine on this tabletop project from Disney online.

Town or village that the princesses can visit, shop at, or dance in the square. Based on the Tangled kingdom.

I combined Sleeping Beauty’s cottage with the tree from Pixie Hollow (hence the glowing yellow in the tree). And yes, that bridge stands up.

Every magical land needs a tower! This one has a “waterfall” behind it, and a forest or thicket in front of it so that it’s more remote. Based on Tangled!

Tinkerbell’s Teapot House and some toad stools to hang out on! Just north is the Autumn Forest and the bridge leading to the Winter Woods.

The Winter Woods combines with Frozen to include an Ice Castle and some mega ice stairs. 

We’ve got to have an aquatic throne for Ariel! 

The ship is actually a pocket so that Princesses can be placed inside for a voyage. They can choose to land on the dock and either go to the castle or the town via cobblestone roads.

The play mat in action for the first time on Christmas morning! Our little girl loved it!

I think Cinderella approves.

And they lived happily ever after…

Sewing It Together

I used felt I already had left over from other unfinished projects (e.g. Quiet Book), and scrap fabric that I didn’t know what to do with from finished projects (e.g. furry little red riding hood costume). I did most of the drawings in one early morning because I was so excited and inspired! I just used those drawings as a pattern to cut up felt freestyle and put this beauty together! It was definitely time-intensive, as I hand-stitched all of the pieces together rather than using a glue gun. I found that the scraps laid on top of each other strangely if I glued it on, and since it took so long to make I wanted this project to withstand pulling and wear from little kids. Using invisible thread was tricky because it sometimes got lost or knotted, but it sure saved time in not having to change out thread colors! I decided not to spend any money on this project, so I didn’t buy batting or fusible interfacing, which might have made it easier to put together and sew. The general gist of the process:

  1. Make a plan on paper.
  2. Make all the felt pieces for each destination.
  3. Sew the “blanket” or mat everything will go on.
  4. Cut all the backgrounds for front and sew together like a quilt.
  5. Lay out all the rivers, bridges, grass, roads. Pin. Sew.
  6. Lay out all the felt destinations, pin, and hand-stitch or sew.
  7. Cut out fabric for back and border of the play mat, pin, and sew.

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