This is a close-up view of my first placemat. The center is at the top. It's in lovely Peaches-n-Cream yarn, which Jody and I could not find more of over the weekend (eek). Must next try Wal-Mart.
This one was made according to the instructions, with the center starting out as a circle, which had to be sewn closed. It does not particularly look nice in the center, so I am trying other methods.
The rest of it looks pretty good, though, and it is placemat-sized. Lee ate off of it yesterday and didn't even spill sauce.
I started the second one yesterday, using the magic cast on for toe-up socks. The cast on looks gorgeous (will post a picture), but, after I was well into the mat, I realized the ends looked funny--they curve. Then it dawned on me that you actually start each "round" on a corner, not the middle, so the cast-on did not remain parallel. I have been thinking and thinking of how to get it all balanced, and think it will involve casting on one stitch at each end (the base stitch to the short sides of the placemat rectangle, then knitting until I get to where the round really should start. I should draw a picture. So, I figure that placemat #3 will actually be the first "good" one.