Two years ago, I made Carli an apron and potholders for Christmas. This project consisted of several firsts for me. I’d never attempted an apron. I’d never made potholders. I certainly had never used bias tape!
Using a sweet little heart shaped pattern by Martha Stewart, I created the following potholders. Being my first, they weren’t perfect, but they were perfectly functional and they matched her new apron.
With a family of six, Carli’s potholders have taken a beating. Every time we go to her house for dinner, I see the potholders and am secretly embarrassed by my beginner sewing. When I tell her she needs new ones she gives me a little wink and says “Yeah, I do!”
Okay, okay. I got the hint, Carli 🙂 For set number two, I decided to make some that matched a coin throw quilt that I made her last year for Christmas. I had oodles of leftover fabric to use. Keeping with the coin style, this is what I came up with.
The coins in her quilt measured 3.5”x8.5”. I grabbed six coins from her leftovers, two from each of the three colors.
I set them on top of one another into two piles. Using my Shape Cut ruler, each pile was lined up and cut into 2” sections. This method is sometimes referred to as Stack and Whack. I created a total of four piles, which was enough for four potholders.
I sewed the coins together into sets using my 1/4″ piecing foot, ironed the seams open, and then sewed the sets together.
I trimmed up the coin stack using my Shape Cut ruler. Gray background pieces were cut 4.75”x9.25” and 2.25”x9.25”, as well as a 9×9” piece for the back.
After attaching the two background pieces to the coin strip set, I trimmed up the entire front to 9×9”.
Using basting spray, I attached the backing fabric to one side of my 9×9” batting, then attached the front piece to the other side, creating a quilt sandwich.
Since the batting was pretty thick, I needed to use a walking foot when quilting the potholder. I failed to do so on my first one and it didn’t turn out so awesome. The second time around, I made sure to use it! It really helped keep the fabric from getting wonky due to the thickness of the batting. I used a straight-line quilting method to sew several lines over the coins.
On Carli’s quilt I used a small orange polka dot fabric for the binding. Luckily, I had enough leftover to bind the potholders. Each potholder requires a 2.5″ strip x WOF (width of fabric, in my case it was 42″). If you need help with binding, refer to the binding tutorial from my Reversible Holiday Table Runner.
The only difference on this project is that I used a straight line instead of a miter to finish the binding. I like to use this simpler method on small projects. To do this, I left a 4-6″ gap between where I start and stop sewing. I brought the binding pieces towards each other, folded them to create a small space in between (less than 1/4″), and ironed it to make a crease.
I opened the binding up and placed right sides together, lining up their creases. With a few pins to hold them together, I sewed directly on the crease. I had drawn a line with my water soluble pen to see the line more easily.
I cut off the excess binding, ironed the seam open, then ironed the binding back into place along the edge of the potholder.
I finished sewing that portion of the binding down, making sure to fix the stitch or back-stitch where I started and stopped sewing.
My handy-dandy Wonder Clips held the binding in place while I top stitched.
All done. These are a big improvement over the first set I made for Carli, wouldn’t you say? I hope she likes them! I sure do. I might keep the second set for myself!
Update: Add a pocket to the back of your quilted potholders before adding the binding: http://www.simplynotable.com/2015/adding-a-pocket-to-your-modern-quilted-potholders/