6.25.2013

DIY Potholder




I was cleaning the kitchen one day and decided that something HAD to be done about my potholder.  I'm not making this up.  I was seriously upset about the potholder and worried that it made my entire kitchen look "bleh".  This then led me to question what my potholder said about me and obviously spiraled into a potholder related panic.  Not that anyone was threatening to define me by my potholder, but if such an instance ever were to arise, I didn't want to be judged by the stained old potholder I had bought at Target years ago.

I'm sure you aren't as concerned about your potholder, but maybe you want a cute new one, or maybe you are looking for a diy gift idea.  This fits that bill too.  Here is what you do. 


proof that it really works - you won't get burnt, swear


Supplies: 

-Cotton fabric cut into 2 - 8 1/2" X 8 1/2" squares ( a fat quarter works perfect for this)
-Felt cut into 3 - 8" x 8" squares (the cheap felt by the sheet from a generic craft store works perfect)
-at least 40" of 1/2" binding or a 40" strip of 1 1/2" fabric to make your own (you can sew a few strips of fabric together to make 40" if you are short)
-quilting or all purpose thread

-sewing needle

Directions:

1. Mark your fabric for quilting:  Skipping the first 1/4" mark ever two inches on 3 sides of one of your cotton fabric squares. Use a ruler to make a few light pencil marks at an angle aligning the dashes in a parallel diagonal pattern. 

how to mark for quilting

2. Make a felt sandwich: stack your 3 felt squares on top of each other so the edges line up as perfect as you can get them.  Sandwich the felt with your 2 cotton fabric squares making sure the felt pieces are close to the center of the pieces of cotton fabric as possible. 
3. Quilt it: Sew seams across the sandwiched squares using your dashes as a pattern. 
4. Trim off the excess cotton fabric around the edges so that the top and bottom layer match up with the felt in the middle
5.  Make your binding (skip this if you bought the pre-made stuff): Fold your strip in half lenghtwise and press.  Open up your creased fabric and fold one of the raw edges so that it just almost meets the fold line, and press.  Repeat this on the other raw edge.  Now fold it along the original crease and press again.  Your binding should look like this.
6.  Attach your binding: this blog has a great tutorial on how to attach your binding with mitered corners.  I hand stitched on the back of the tape for my potholder with a ladder stitch.  If you don't mind the visible seam, hit it with your machine like the binding tutorial suggests.  
7.  Make the hanging loop: Take the leftover binding and sew along the open edge so it will no longer fold open.  Fold over the raw edges  on both ends to what will become the back side of the strip and iron into place.
8. Attach the loop: Sandwich the potholder with the folded ends of the strip about 1/2 inch from the corner.  Stitch in an X shape (like you would attach a button) through all of the layers.  Repeat X stitch until you feel like the loop is held on well. 


Ta Da!  Potholder crisis averted!  Now people will judge you based on your super cute potholder. 


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