An article on becoming good at basic hand woven pot holder creation. Includes videos showing how to get accustomed to a basic potholder loom kit, potholder loops and lace edged variations, and other pot holder loom details:
By Linda Augsburg
I love potholders. I do a lot of cooking, so I have a lot of hot pads in my kitchen. But I also like a coordinated kitchen, so having the ability to make a potholder to match my decor is appealing. And when I give kitchen-oriented bridal shower gifts, I like to make a potholder or two to match the couple's kitchen decor. I've learned to stop myself from making big wedding gifts, but making a pot holder doesn't take a lot of time and you can always use an extra potholder!
When I was a child, we made potholders often - the woven kind. I don't remember using a crochet hook when I made them, but it's a useful tool for weaving through more easily and finishing off the edges. If you haven't tried making woven pot holders yourself or with your kids, give it a shot.
Now, if you'd like to learn to sew a potholder, use some good basic sewing and quilting techniques, such as fussy cutting a motif in a print fabric, quilting, binding, and more.
The key to the success of sewn potholders, in my opinion, is the heat-resistant Insul-Bright Insulating Materials - it's a must for pot holders safety. Not one to dictate brands to our readers, Beacon has some heat-resistant materials as well, both quilted and unquilted. Your local fabric store should be able to help you find something that will work for you.
Sometimes, it's useful to have potholder-like pad to put under casserole dishes or platters to protect your table when you're entertaining. If you often cook and serve using a 9″ x 13″ dish or serve on a certain platter, it might be useful to create a hot pad for under the dish. You could even make it using different prints for each side if you wanted to - one that matches your kitchen or dining room and the other a holiday print. Here's how:
1. Use your platter or dish as a pattern, trace the shape on the wrong side of one piece of fabric. Cut out that piece of fabric and use it as a pattern to cut the other piece of fabric.
2. Use the fabric as a pattern to cut two layers of the heat-resistant material.
3. Layer the fabrics and heat-resistant material. The heat-resistant surface of the heat-resistant material should face the wrong side of the fabric and the right sides of the fabric should be facing out.
4. Keeping the raw edges even, quilt the layers to stabilize them. This does not have to be elaborate quilting - just a simple X or some horizontal or vertical lines will do.
5. Bind the edges. If the edges are rounded, you'll want to use bias tape or binding which you can purchase, or you can make your own bias tape. If the edges are straight and you have 90-degree corner angles, you can use either bias tape or straight-of-grain strips to bind the edges.
And there you have it, a finished potholder that is perfect for protecting your table as well.
Linda Augsburg is an Editor for http://www.FaveCrafts.com - a popular online resource for all things crafting, from free knitting patterns and free crochet patterns to Christmas crafts and crafting with kids.
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