06 August 2011

Waterproof Picnic Blanket

We had a crazy dry July over here. But I am hoping we get some rain this month. And I also hope we get some nice picnic days. In case any of those picnic days come shortly after a rainy day when the ground might still be wet, I present this waterproof picnic blanket. It can even be easily rolled up with straps for carrying.

When I had this idea I was sure there were some tutorials out there but instead of googling it I went it alone and came up with my own way of doing it. I think it turned out pretty great and was easy and cheap to make so I am putting my findings here in a tutorial. It actually turned out to be simple to the point of not needing a tutorial, no surprises or anything. But since I already took pictures along the way... here it is.

*a thin blanket/bed cover (you could use something thinner, even a quilt top you make but the thin layer of batting gives the blanket a nice weight and makes it roll up very easily)
*a small tarp (I used a $6 6x6ft tarp that actually came with a rope too)
*4 pieces of thin rope at least 2 feet long each (or you could make the ties from fabric)

Step 1: Lay your tarp over your blanket right sides together and cut the blanket to the size and shape of the tarp.Step 2: Lay your ropes in their place. You want two groups of two ropes and you want them on one half of the blanket (because you will fold it in half before rolling up). So just space the two groups out approximately equally on one half of the side of the blanket. Leave a few inches hanging out with most of the rope length inside the sandwich of tarp and blanket. Use your biggest pins to secure the ropes in their places.Step 3: Pin the tarp and blanket together all around the edges. To avoid making extra holes in your plastic pin very close to the edge.Step 4: Sew the blanket and tarp together all the way around except leave a gap at least a foot long for turning. Be sure to go back and forth over the part where the ropes are attached a few times.Step 5: Clip any corners. And turn the whole thing right side out. Top stitch to close the opening you left for turning. There is the option to top stitch all around the blanket but I didn't.

Step 6: Take it out and enjoy a picnic. To carry: fold in half, roll up starting with non rope ends, tie ropes around roll, then I like to tie the extra length of the two groups of rope together to make myself a little shoulder strap.
linked up here:


  1. Great idea! I would love one of those! :) Would love to have you link this up to my {wow me} wednesday link party going on right now over on my blog. Hope to see you there. {I’m a new follower, too.} Cute blog!


  2. Awesome tutorial! Never would have thought it would be sew simple. :) It does seem like it would be quite a pain to wash, though. Any tips or tricks? I told my boyfriend about it and he suggested adding snaps to the blanket instead of sewing it directly together so that it can be machine washed. Yeah, I'm pretty lucky. Hehe

    1. Hmm Haven't gotten to the washing part yet. I personally would try squishing it into the machine if it was really dirty or else maybe hanging it over the washing line and hosing it down.

      Snaps would be pretty perfect though or even velcro!

  3. Came across your site while looking for outdoor blankets.
    Waterproofness and washability are both important to me so I just carry both a tarp and a fleece blanket. Lay the tarp on the ground first then the fleece blanket over it. An extra fleece blanket is brought along when the weather is cool. The fleece blankets are, of course, machine washable. The tarp is easily washed by hanging them with suction cap hooks on my bathroom wall, scrubbing with detergent and then hosing down with water.

    If I want a washable sewed-in waterproof blanket, I just bring a sleeping bag, unzip it and lay it on the ground.