Tutorial: Pot Holders by Guest Blogger Aesthetic Nest!

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Today, we are thrilled to share our newest collaboration with you.  Anneliese from Aesthetic Nest Blog has put together this tutorial for some lovely potholders featuring Birch Fabrics' Organic Canvas!  We think they are beautiful, functional, and an exciting handmade gift!  Take it away Anneliese!

Today I am sharing a collaboration with Birch Organic Fabrics for their new, first ever certified organic line of canvas home decor fabrics. It's called "The Grove" and you can see the line here.

This fabric would be great in a bag, or child's footstool, or my favorite: tablecloths and place mats (always the "what to do" when I find a great fabric but can't decorate a room in it). But we came up with another idea--potholders, or "hot pads" if you prefer.

Who can't use a new potholder? I know I can. And one that is nice to look at? Such a luxury! These would make great gifts for your girlfriends, or next Mother's Day, or Father's Day for that matter. These fabrics are beautiful, and one of my favorites is the Poppies print, but there are several that wouldn't be described as girly.

If you are a quilter, think of these as mini-quilts. A potholder is a nice size for experimenting. And if you aren't much of a quilter, don't be scared away because these are really very simple. In fact, you don't need to quilt at all. And, they work! I've included a lining fabric that reflects heat.

Want to learn to make a potholder? Click through for the tutorial.

For a set of two potholders, you'll need:
  • Two  9"x9"squares of fabric (1/4 yard is 9" long and you can cut more than four squares, but you may want to mix some fabrics, so 1/4 yard of each of the fabrics you'd like to use)
  • Two 9"x9"squares of cotton batting such as Warm Company Warm White
  • Two 9"x9" squares of  Warm Company Insul-Bright (this is the heat-reflective material)
  • 2 yards of  1/2" double-fold bias tape binding (I made my own using this "tube method" tutorial), plus an extra 5" if you would like to create loops for hanging

The Birch Organic Fabric I used for the potholders are all from their Grove line. Pictured above from left to right are:

  • Patch Blocks
  • Flight Dusk
  • Poppies Mineral
  • The Grove Sun

  • The bias tape binding was sewn from a solid organic fabric in cream.

    To start, layer your materials for one potholder as shown above: 1 square outer fabric wrong side up, 1 square batting, 1 square Insul-Bright, 1 square batting, 1 square outer fabric right side up.

    Stack neatly and pin around the raw edges.

    Now for the fun part: quilt through the stack of fabric in any way you'd like! I followed the lines in Patch Blocks...

    ...and marked 1" intervals to sew...

    ...parallel lines down The Grove Sun.

    I thought it would be fun to sew flight paths across Flight Dusk. And it was! Note that you can quilt through the entire stack, or you can temporarily divide your stack of fabrics to quilt each side differently--"flight paths" on one side and quilt blocks on the other, for instance. Then just put the stack back together to proceed. You can also skip the quilting altogether and leave the fabric plain (see photo below).

    Quilted or not, the next step is to create rounded corners. I like the look, but it also makes applying the bias tape binding a bit easier. To create your rounded corners use a glass or small glass bowl to trace a curve on each corner...

    ...then cut through all the layers of fabrics to round out your potholder.

    You will need 1 yard of bias tape for each potholder.

    Unfold the bias tape and pin it to one side of your potholder, right sides together. Align one of  the unfolded edges of your bias tape with the raw edge of the potholder. Pin generously and ease the bias tape around those curved corners. 

    You should fold back the start of your bias tape .5" and then lap the end over the top of that fold. (When it is turned right side out you'll have a nice folded edge showing rather than a raw edge.)

    Stitch the bias tape to the potholder using a .5" seam allowance.

    Trim the seam allowances a tiny bit to take care of any unevenness. Then re-fold the unsewn edge of the bias tape towards the center fold line of the tape, and then pull the bias tape over the seam allowances to the opposite side of the potholder so that the center fold of the tape is at the center of the seam allowances and the folded edge of the bias tape can be pinned along the stitching line.

    Pin the bias tape along the stitching line on the opposite side of the pot holder.

    Before stitching...

    Take an extra length of bias tape binding and stitch along the double folded edge. Cut a 3.5" length to form a loop by folding it in half.

    Insert the raw edges of this loop in the folded end of the bias tape binding (one edge on each side of the potholder seam allowances) and pin.

    Stitch all the way around the potholder as close to the folded, pinned edge as possible. 

    And there you have it: a beautiful and functional potholder.

    Thank you for sharing Anneliese! Check out Anneliese's Blog, Aesthetic Nest, for lots of sewing tutorials and inspiration!


    These are fab - thanks for the tutorial! Gorgeous fabric too :)