How to make a waterproof picnic rug in minutes (and without a sewing machine!)

You may have seen on Instagram that I recently posted a reel of a picnic I set up. The rug in that video is actually a regular indoor throw blanket that I hacked into a picnic blanket. Crazy, right?! For under $20, I’m going to show you how you can transform any rug or blanket in your home into a waterproof picnic rug in minutes. This is an easy hack that even a novice DIYer can do so keep on scrolling for all the steps!

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Items you will need:

  • a throw rug of your choice
  • sheet of PVC at the length of your rug (this is sold by the metre from Lincraft, costing approximately $7 per metre)
  • press stud kit (also available at Lincraft. I opted for a bronze finish)
  • hammer
  • scissors
Items you will need to make picnic rug
Items you will need to make your own waterproof picnic rug

Steps:

Step 1: Lay out your plastic and cut to size

Firstly, you’ll create the plastic backing for your throw blanket. This is what will make it waterproof.

The easiest way to cut the plastic sheet to size is to find a large, clean floor area where you can lay out your plastic material. This product is sold by the metre at Lincraft and is available in a thick or thin version. I bought 2 metres of the thin plastic as it is still durable while also being easy to fold/roll (and you’ll see why this is important soon).

Next, place your throw blanket on top. Line up the corners on one end and cut a straight line where the throw blanket ends to remove excess plastic. To save time on measuring, I simply placed the throw blanket on top and folded the plastic at this point to create a guide of where to cut ā€” it doesn’t have to be perfect but if you want perfect, you could also grab a measuring tape and texta šŸ˜‰

Lay out plastic and cut to size
Find a large, clean floor area to lay out your plastic sheet
Cut plastic to size
Where the throw blanket ends, cut a straight line to create your plastic backing

Shop picnic essentials

Classic dry white wine
Classic dry white wine
Picnic table
Picnic table
Green throw
Green throw
Picnic basket
Picnic basket
Wine glasses
Wine glasses
Classic dry white wine
Classic dry white wine
Picnic table
Picnic table
Green throw
Green throw
Picnic basket
Picnic basket
Wine glasses
Wine glasses
Classic dry white wine
Classic dry white wine
Picnic table
Picnic table
Green throw
Green throw
Picnic basket
Picnic basket
Wine glasses
Wine glasses

Step 2: Hammer press studs in all corners of the throw and plastic

The next step is to add press studs. These are stud pop buttons like those often found in clothing. I opted for bronze press studs as I liked the muted metallic finish.

By fastening the plastic to your throw using press studs, you’ll be able to easily remove the throw blanket from the plastic when you need to pop the blanket in the wash.

Read the instructions on the kit and layout all the parts to make life easier for yourself.

Then use your hammer to add press studs to all 4 corners of your throw blanket and plastic backing.

Each corner of your picnic blanket will use 4 pieces. You’ll attach 2 pieces to the top layer (the throw blanket) and 2 pieces to the bottom layer (the plastic backing). I used the prettier bronze buttons for the top layer (parts A and B) and the inner part of the stud (parts C and D) on the plastic backing. This step will make more sense when it comes time to adding press studs, just follow the packet instructions.

Depending on the size of your blanket, you may also like to add extra press studs along the length. I did this on the two longer sides.

Working out press stud pieces
Open your press stud kit and work out what parts are what
Add press studs to all corners
Hammer press studs to all 4 corners of your picnic blanket
Clip rug and plastic together
You will end up with a pretty stud button on the top of your throw that can fasten to the stud on the plastic backing

Step 3: Clip it together and roll it up

Your waterproof picnic rug is done! All you need to do is clip the plastic backing to the throw and roll it up. Now it’s ready to take on your next picnic!

This hack to make a waterproof picnic rug was inspired by wanting a soft and comfortable picnic rug that’s large enough for the family to sit on. And that didn’t cost the world. Or look hideous.

You could use the technique in this tutorial to turn any throw blanket you have at home into a waterproof picnic rug for about $20. The plastic backing is $7 per metre and press studs cost about $9 per packet.

Roll it up for your next picnic

Has this DIY inspired you to make a waterproof picnic rug of your own? If you have any questions, pop them in the comments below and I’ll get back to you asap.

More DIY ideas

DIY picnic rug

Shop picnic essentials

Classic dry white wine
Classic dry white wine
Picnic table
Picnic table
Green throw
Green throw
Picnic basket
Picnic basket
Wine glasses
Wine glasses
Classic dry white wine
Classic dry white wine
Picnic table
Picnic table
Green throw
Green throw
Picnic basket
Picnic basket
Wine glasses
Wine glasses
Classic dry white wine
Classic dry white wine
Picnic table
Picnic table
Green throw
Green throw
Picnic basket
Picnic basket
Wine glasses
Wine glasses
Picnic feature
Picnic in the bush
Large picnic rug
Large water proof picnic

Photography by Thorson Photography

Disclaimer: This post was first published in February 2021. It also contains some affiliate links. This means that when you click on a link and purchase something from that site, we may make a small commission at no extra cost to you.

Gina Beschorner Style Curator

Welcome to Style Curator, your destination for daily interiors inspiration, styling tips, reno advice, home tours and DIY projects!

We're on a mission to help you create a home you love. And with plenty of tips and tricks, tutorials and other home inspo, we give you all the tools to achieve it!

Iā€™m Gina, Founder and Interior Designer, and you can read more about Style Curator here.

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