Make These Urban Concrete And Spray Paint Geometric Place Mats

I can never seem to find place mats that I like. I'm not into the cork ones, or the weave ones, and I never like images or patterns on the plastic ones. I would rather have ones made from natural materials like marble or wood, but if you are looking for around 8-10 mats then it becomes pretty expensive for such a basic item.

I was recently reading a copy of Style At Home magazine, and they had an article on making your own planters from concrete. I didn't need any planters, but I thought why not try making place mats out of concrete? (I know, bit random, but that's just how my brain works). Concrete as a material is so cheap, so it was completely worth a try, but in all honestly it took me a lot of attempts to get this right. At first I attempted to make the mats out of your basic standard concrete, which failed as it took ages to set and constantly cracked once fully dry (it was hard not to add too much water to the mixture.) Next, I decided to use rapid setting concrete to speed up the process, but didn't really realise how fast rapid setting concrete set (clue: fast - especially in the heat we've been having). I destroyed a nice cake-mixing bowl trying to mix the concrete before I emptied it into the mould, which just set in the cake bowl instead. Eventually I worked out the best way to make the mats, and once I had that sussed it was pretty easy to make them all.

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