It’s safe to say that most of us like picnics, be it in the patio, the local park or a favored campground. It’s also true that nobody likes a soggy blanket after a summer rain gets the drop on us. For the sake of our peace of mind, a waterproof blanket is what we need!
- It’s All In The Material
Polyester is a favorite when it comes to outdoor-strong textiles, and it is also fairly common among picnic blankets; they will usually come lined (at top, bottom or both) with polyurethane and similar material, so as to boost water resistance, the idea being that, be it from a surprise drizzle or wet grass, you will not have to suffer a damp blanket. It’s not rare to find them padded, with wool for example; this makes them a bit plushier than average, which may or may not something you favor.
As a general rule, a blanket of this type should not be machine washed—or dry cleaned—, as it would put the waterproof treatment at risk. Many will come with care instructions but, on average, the best way to get them clean is to wash by hand and then air-dry. Gentler detergents are also strongly recommended.
Things Worth Considering When Shopping Around
These items are not cookie-cutter: there are certain factors that set one blanket apart from the next, and which should be given weight before making a final decision.
How Big You Need It
If romantic, tête-à-tête picnics are more of your thing, then it is safe to assume you will not need to cover as much area as if you were planning to take out an entire family. It doesn’t hurt to keep in mind the size of party you intend the blanket for, and plan your purchase accordingly.
Easy To Carry Around
A picnic blanket is meant to be taken places: hauled in person, put in a trunk, you name it. When using just any old blanket, you may have a bit of trouble, as they are not designed for such a use; a blanket specifically made for picnics, on the other hand, will be designed with portability in mind. Aside from easy to fold, many will feature a built-in handle, or a tote bag to put them into for easy transport.
We spoke of padding a few lines back, which makes certain blankets softer to sit (or rest) on. Depending on the material, however, it doesn’t have to stop there: some blankets may be warmer than others, which means they can be used in case of a sudden drop in temperature. Convenient, is it not?
Some blankets are padded in such a way that they can double up as, for example, training mats, in case you want to get some workout done. This is all but certain to impact the price, so it is probably a good idea to not aim for specific features if you do not plan on using them.
Simple To Clean
As mentioned before, many blankets must be washed by hand, or even spot cleaned. There are some, however, that can actually be machine washed; you may prefer one of these, given the effort it will save you after every picnic excursion.
And, Of Course… Personal Taste!
Colors, patterns, tassels and lack thereof… whatever you have in mind aesthetically speaking, odds are strongly in favor of you finding it. Just because it’s intended for more heavy-duty use, doesn’t mean it has to be ugly!
- Some Finds That You Might Like
These are options we believe you are likely to find interesting, due to their looks, functionality, or a combination of both.
For Its Aesthetic: Wild in Bloom Beach Blanket
Its looks are fairly popular—it is often used for photoshoots—but that’s not the only thing this blanket stands to offer you: acrylic wool at the top, dark polyester at the bottom, it will keep any moisture on the ground from reaching you, and it is also padded to a certain degree, making it safe as a playmat or to cover yourself with should a chilly breeze surprise you in the open. It comes with a strap to roll it into for carrying, and it also includes a tote bag so it can travel on your back, thereby freeing your hands up. Two colors available.
- Great for picture time.
- Machine washable.
- Bottom lining is not perfect—water will seep through if set on a drenched surface.
Rugged And Comfortable: Oceas Large Waterproof Outdoor Blanket
Offered in blue, grey and red, this one comes with double coated (polyester and polyurethane) backing, to help ensure no amount of moisture will make it through from the ground. Large enough for 3 adults, the top is insulated fleece that is quite appropriate for keeping warm should the occasion demand it.
The blanket comes with a bag and handle, for effortless carrying. 1-year replacement warranty.
- Strong backing at the bottom.
- Modern look.
- Layers are not sewn together—only the edges—, which may lead to uncomfortable sliding, especially when moving on top of the blanket.
- Material can be loud when it shifts around.
Extra Large: CampMe Premium Waterproof Picnic and Camping Blank
This one combines waterproof/windproof fabric and soft fleece for a final result that is both resilient and comfortable. Remarkably large on its own (87″ x 58″), it also features clips so you can join multiple blankets together in case you ever need more space. 4 metal stakes—included— can be run through metal grommets attached to all corners, so it will stay in place under strong winds, and there’s even a pocket near one of the corners for your smaller items, such as a cellphone. Includes tote bag for carrying.
- Already large, can be made even larger.
- Solid waterproof protection: won’t soak through even if placed on a puddle.
- Only one color available.
Best For Saving Space: HZJOYUE Outdoor Pocket Blanket
It’s 71″ x 55″, not exactly tiny; and still, it manages to fit into a bag the size of your hand. It’s lightweight, sandproof, comes with a pocket for your phone on every corner, and it can be secured with stakes, or hung from the included carabiner when stored in its bag. Purse, backpack, trunk, it can go with you anywhere and you’ll hardly notice it during transit.
It comes with some variety too, as there are 5 colors and patterns to select from, so you may get the one that more closely strikes your fancy.
- Quite affordable.
- Extremely portable.
- Not as comfortable as others, as there’s no padding of any kind.
- Included pegs are plastic, and therefore weaker than the average offer.
For A Traditional Feeling: Three Donkeys Extra Large Picnic & Beach Blanket
This one is a good option if you’re the nostalgic sort, as it features the plaid pattern many of us remain quite familiar with—but without the inconveniences of the past. The backing is 210D Oxford fabric, the top is polyester taffeta, and the middle comes with sponge padding for a total of 3 layers for your comfort. There are 3 patterns to choose from (one also plaid, but in yellow), so there’s a decent chance you’ll find something that suits your fancy.
- Traditional designs.
- Machine washable.
- No grommets or loops; impossible to secure it to the ground.
- Difficult to roll up for carrying and storage.
And there you have it; depending on the purpose you have in mind, or the feeling you’re going for, now you know which blanket is the best fit. And don’t forget, it doesn’t have to be grass—it can be sand, or even the mountain! All that’s left, is planning your next adventure.