Now I have to either pull myself together and make that darn potholder or finish my lazy evening and endure the icky feeling of being a total slacker, thus causing me to fall behind and leak over into time already slotted for Week 6. The thing that makes this decision so difficult is that I knew this wouldn't just be a quick cut-and-sew project because my goal was to make a potholder with pockets. So I can't just make a regular square or quilted or even just a flat, heart-shaped potholder, no sirree. It has to have pocketses, Precious!
So what am I going to do? Well, if you know me at all (and if you can see the potholder at the top of this post), it should be fairly easy for you to guess what I've decided: it's POTHOLDER TIME!
[3 hours later]
Done! You can click "Read More" below to see the full photo tutorial. The pictures are dark and shadowy because I was doing this at night and most of the time I try to avoid using the flash at all costs. But flashy or not, making the tutorial took a whole lot of time and energy. And you know what? I've realized something:
I do not like making photo tutorials.
There. I said it.
In real life, I am a really good teacher. But this photo tutorial thing is really time-consuming for me because naturally I'm more of a writer than a photographer, and I become really long-winded when I try to write out all the steps I took to do something. I honestly think the tutorials I find and use do a better job of explaining the steps than I do, so this might be the last time I chronicle my goals with a myriad of step-by-step photos and complicated explanations. I hope you're not too crushed. ;)
For Week 6, I'm going to learn "When Irish Eyes Are Smilin'" on my son's harmonica (granted, that's if I can find it in the toy-laden abyss that we lovingly call his room). Yes, you read that right. I'm not sure if I'll post a picture of myself playing it and you'll just have to take my word for it, or if I'll be brave and post a video, but either way, this is happening.
Do you have any harmonica-playing tips? Or are you brave enough to make your own pocketed potholder? If so, leave a comment below with advice or a link to your finished piece--I'd love to hear from you!
Juicy Fruit Potholder with Pockets inspired by this tutorial
What you'll need:
-2 different colored fabrics, about a square foot of each (I used cheap-o dollar bin fabric)
-bias tape (Don't have any handy? Use leftover fabric and make your own with this awesome tutorial!)
-needle and thread
-quilt batting or another insulating-type product
-cardboard (1 cereal box works fine)
-fabric pen or regular pen
-picture to copy for pattern shapes
1. Set out your fabrics in a huge mess on the table. Decide which fabrics look cool together and separate them (while at the same time dreaming about what you're going to do in the near future with that adorable red and green apple pattern!). I chose the multi-fruit mix and the wordy one that seemed to match well. Wash and iron your fabric if it isn't already (mine was).
3. Cut out the oval and then use it as a pattern to trace and cut out a second oval on more cardboard (i.e. the other side of the cereal box). You should have 2 cardboard oval pieces now. Set one oval aside, and use the other to cut out smaller "pocket" shape patterns (see the pics below). I didn't measure, but basically you want your pocket shape to be wide enough so that when you slide your hand into the finished potholder, the pockets should cover your stretched out fingers up to your knuckles.
After I completed the project, I realized my pockets were too small, so I would suggest just cutting your second oval in half, using the entire half of the oval and rounding the inner edges in a wide arc (rather than cutting them smaller like I did), and using those pieces as your pocket patterns.
5. Use your patterns to cut pieces for the inner layer of insulation. You want 1 oval and 2 pocket-sized pieces of insulation. I used Warm & Natural batting (this was a little thin, I think, so if you use it make sure to double or triple the layers), but you could also use Insul Bright or even a piece of thick felt. Set these pieces aside.
7. Time to sew! Sew the inner (straighter) edges of the 2 pockets with a 1/4 to 1/2 inch seam. (Some people may be super picky about the length of the seam, but I'm not.)
It was at this point I realized that once the finished pockets were flipped right side out and facing each other, the fabric pattern would be upside down on one side. Oops! So, I quickly cut out another piece, this time flipping the cardboard pattern over instead of just lining it up in a row with the others like I'd done at first.
8. Turn your pockets right-side-out and press them with an iron set to the proper fabric setting. As an FYI, I absolutely love my Panasonic iron. It's really cute, works great, and has *gasp!* a retractable cord! No one paid me to say that (but hey Panasonic, if you want to, I'd be happy to be your little iron-promoting-and-getting-paid-for-it minion).
9. Now with the right side up, sew another seam on each pocket about 5 mm from the folded sewn edge. Stick your pocket insulation pieces inside the pockets and trim if necessary so that the insulation doesn't stick out the side.
10. Figure out what you want the potholder to look like when it's finished and stack it that way. The order should be as follows: Insulation oval, one fabric oval with right side facing up, two insulation-filled pockets with sewn edges facing inward and right sides facing up, then your other fabric oval on top with right side facing down. Since the potholder will be reversible (something I didn't realize until I was all done), it doesn't matter which side you start with as long as you've lined it all up the way you want it. Pin it all around.
1. Bigger pockets or a smaller base. The finished potholder is a little too big for my hands, but perfect for my husband's.
2. Awareness that it's reversible so I could have made both sides "pretty".
3. Thicker insulation. One layer of the Warm & Natural batting is a little too thin to really protect my hand.
And now for a purely gratuitous pic of my oldest using the potholder as he "cooks" a meal for his little brother and his cronies (stuffed animals) the next morning. So. Freakin'. Cute.