How To Make a Potholder or Hot Pad

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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 shown in the video below from YouTube. (Though the demonstrator refers to them as “rubber bands”, they’re actually stretchy cotton loops which are much more heat resistant than nylon ones.) I don’t remember using a crochet hook when I made them, but from the looks of things in her video, 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.

Weave a potholder video from YouTube

Now, if you’d like to learn to sew a potholder, here’s a video from Nancy’s Notions as to how to make a potholder. This potholder uses some good basic sewing and quilting techniques, such as fussy cutting a motif in a print fabric, quilting, binding, and more.

Creating a simple quilted potholder from Nancys Notions on YouTube

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.


    1. Use the fabric as a pattern to cut two layers of the heat-resistant material.


    1. 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.


    1. 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.


  1. 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.

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Editor at FaveCrafts is a website with all the craft project ideas, tutorials, videos, and tips you'll ever need! We add new projects and tips every day. Some of our readers' favorites include Christmas Crafts, Free Knitting Patterns, Free Crochet Patterns and Crafting with Kids. You will find step-by-step instructions, videos and patterns to make it quick and easy.
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  1. Natalie Neiman says

    Since I’m moving out of college dorms and into an off-campus apartment this fall, I will finally be saying goodbye to dorm food and hello to home-cooked meals made in my own kitchen! Potholders will be a must for all of my cooking and baking endeavors. I love the idea to make different potholders for different holidays. I’ll definitely look for some Halloween and Christmas-themed fabrics at the store, along with ones that match my school’s colors–perfect for use during football season!

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