Placemats not only protect wood, marble and other table surfaces from hot plates, they provide a styling opportunity too.
Whether you like a simple or a sophisticated tablescape, placemats allow you to layer colors and textures–and to ultimately flatter the food you're serving.
If you've invested in one of the best dinnerware sets, you'll want to frame your plates and bowls with the best placemats. So check out our round-up from the best home decor stores and find your favorites.
Best scalloped placemats
These pretty 100% cotton scalloped placemats are available in two contrasting designs. Choose from dusky pink with a bold red edge or cream with a gold-hued edge for an on-trend style statement at the table.
Price: $80 set of 4
Made from French flax linen, these charming placemats from Bed Threads are offered in a choice of five contrasting neutral, muted and bold tones, from white and grey, sage and olive, terracotta and rust and more.
Best round placemats
Price: $198 set of 4
Designed by Joanna Buchanan, this handcrafted set of four (D15") round straw placemats has a striking contrasting fringe in black or red around each to perfectly offset your cooking creations.
This woven (D15") round placemat is crafted in designer Sandy Chilewich's New York studio and is made from a durable vinyl material to keep it looking good. Choose from Espresso, Ivy, Gravel or Linen tones.
Best rustic placemats
Made from viscose and linen, these (L19"xW16") woven placemats have a fringed trim and can be teamed with a matching table runner for relaxed, rustic style. Available in dark gray, lilac, oatmeal or honey.
This (L19"xW14") 100% cotton placemat is offered in Coral, Indigo, French blue or Platinum, with cream-colored woven stripes and will provide a rustic French farmhouse feel. Maximize the effect with oversized napkins in the same series.
Best smart placemats
Price: $20.99 pack of 2
Made with medium-density fiberboard and cork. this set of placemats has a black and white laminated, graphic pattern on the front for dramatic style at the dining table. Pair with black plates and gold-hued flatware for added interest.
Price: $20.99 set of 6
Offering value that's hard to beat, this set of slightly ribbed cotton (L19"xW13") placemats is available in eight muted shades including teal, pink, blue, white and gray and can be popped in the washing machine after use.
What are the best quality placemats?
Placemats you can wash, brush or wipe clean will last and look better for longer. So consider the materials when you are choosing placemats for your table. Natural fibres tend to age better than synthetics, so look for linen or cotton placemats that can be popped in the wash.
'Natural fibres such as 100% French flax linen are more absorbent, heat resistant and easier to wash than synthetic materials, soaking up any spills and protecting your table,' says Bed Threads founder, Genevieve Rosen-Biller.
'Moreover, linen's natural antibacterial properties actively repel dirt and bacteria, maintaining a pristine dining environment. Linen surpasses other fabrics with its exceptional durability and impressive tensile strength, making it approximately 30% thicker and stronger than cotton or wool.
'Unlike machine-woven cotton, which succumbs to wear and tear, linen only gets better with use and requires minimal care – no ironing or dry cleaning necessary.'
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Jacky Parker is a London-based freelance journalist and content creator, specialising in interiors, travel and food. From buying guides and real home case studies to shopping and news pages, she produces a wide range of features for national magazines and SEO content for websites
A long-time contributor to Livingetc, as a member of the team, she regularly reports on the latest trends, speaking to experts and discovering the latest tips. Jacky has also written for other publications such as Homes and Gardens, Ideal Home, Red, Grand Designs, Sunday Times Style and AD, Country Homes and Interiors and ELLE Decoration.
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