They’re not really quilted, but they are pieced like a quilt. Very cute, fun, and good practice before doing a large quilt.
Starting small when doing piecing for the first time is a good idea. Potholders are a fun and quick craft to start with. You can make a fun collection for your hopechest, give them as gifts, or use them in your own family’s kitchen. This is a tutorial for three different kinds of pieced quilt blocks made into potholder size. Morning Star, Pinwheel, and Nine Patch. Nine Patch is a good starter. Although the others are not hard to do, even if they do look hard, but the nine patch is simple and square. Another fun one that is called Log Cabin can be found at this blog. It doesn’t look too hard to do, though I wouldn’t do the binding that way as it is more difficult.
You don’t want to use polyester or acrylic fabrics or batting for the “filler” because not only are they not heat resistant, but they also melt when exposed to high heat and when melted can stick to skin, possibly causing a severe burn in the process. Cotton and wool are good fabrics to use, and a bath towel works well for the “filler”.
To start with, decide on what fabrics and colors you are going to use. To make the pinwheel potholder(far left in top picture) you will need three coordinating fabrics.
1-Cut out all your pieces:
Four squares (green and blue) that measure 3″ X 3″. These will make the pinwheel in the middle.
Two 4-3/4″ X 1-3/4″ and two 8″ X 1-3/4″ out of a coordinating fabric for your border.
One piece that measures 1-1/2 ” X 4″ for your tab (optional)
One 10″ X 10″ piece for your backing
One 9″ X 9″ piece of towel. If you are using a thinner towel, you may want two pieces.
2- On the wrong side of four of the squares (green), make a pencil mark down the middle and lay the green pieces on the the blue pieces right sides together. Sew 1/4″ (all seam allowances are 1/4″) down both sides of the mark and then cut down the pencil line.
Open them up and press them (iron your piece after each seam you sew). Then lay them out the way the end result will be:
3- Sew the left top and bottom together, matching up the points, and do the same with the right top and bottom.
Sew the two together, matching up all points:
4- Sew the two shorter border pieces onto the sides of your pinwheel…
…and then sew on the longer pieces to the two remaining sides:
5- Trim the towel piece to be just a bit smaller than your pinwheel piece.
6- Sandwich your potholder by laying your back piece right side down first, then the towel, and then the pinwheel piece right side up. Center it all just so 🙂
7- Iron in the raw edges (about 1/2″…or whatever looks good)…
…and fold them in again to create a binding. Pin and sew. Leave one corner open so you can put in your hanging tab later.
8- Make your tab. Fold raw edges in on both long sides, and then in half. Iron and stitch.
9- Fold the tab in half and place raw edges in the unfinished corner. Stitch well.
(another potholder to show the stitching up close)
You’re finished! 🙂
For the Morning Star potholder (far right in top photo), You will need three coordinating fabrics again. Cut out:
Four (green) 2″ X 2″ squares
Eight (blue) 2″ X 2″ squares
One 3-1/2″ X 3-1/2″ piece for the middle (green)
Two 9-1/2″ X 1-1/2″ for border
Two 6-1/2″ X 1-1/2 ” for border
One 1-1/2″ X 4″ for tab
One 11″ X 11″ for backing
One piece of towel 8-1/2″ X 8-1/2″ for a “filler”
1- Sew the star points as you did for the pinwheel in step 2. But don’t sew the squares together as you did for the pinwheel, but like shown in this picture. After that, sew the blue squares, that are the corners, to the side of the star points…
…then sew the middle pieces together.
And then sew all three rows together while matching up points and corners.
Continue with the borders, backing and binding as you did with the pinwheel potholder in steps 4-9.
And…you’re finished with potholder number two!! 🙂
And the simplest one yet. For the Nine Patch potholder (pictured in the middle of the top picture) you will need a variety of several coordinating fabrics. I chose blue and green since those are two of three colors that make my heart sing 😉
Nine 2″ X 2″ squares. I did five green and four blue
One 1-1/2″ X 4″ piece for the tab
One 9″ X 1-1/2 ” for border
One 6″ X 1-1/2″ for border
One piece 11-1/2″ X 11-1/2″ for backing
Once piece of towel 8-1/2″ X 8-1/2″ for a “filler”
Sew the squares together in vertical rows using 1/4″ seam allowance and then sew the rows together matching up the corners.
Continue with the border, backing and binding as you did with the pinwheel potholder in steps 4-9.
Ta Da!! 🙂
The DVD, Homestead Blessings-The Art of Quilting, is what really got my sisters and I (back) into quilting. The West Ladies make it look so fun and easy. We have started several quilts several years ago, but have never finished them. After watching this, it inspired us to get them back out and work on them.
If you quilt, and/or have made one of these, I’d love to hear about it!! 🙂
This post was originally posted at Feelin’ Feminine for the ‘A Chest of Hopes’ column.
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