DIY Food

How to Make Your Own Linen Potholders

February  4, 2015

As satisfying as a well-written recipe, a smart and thoughtful DIY is our kind of lunch break reading. Bonus points if it's an easy project AND teaches us how to make something beautiful.

Today: Liz Stanley at Say Yes (with assistance from Sara Albers and Sarah Iveson) shows us how whip up a linen potholder with just a few scraps of fabric and a couple deliberate stitches. 

Linen Pot Holders Say Yes

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It’s crazy how quickly I can wear out a set of potholders -- especially during soup season! Being able to make your own means a new set is never far from reach, and it adds a personal touch to hostess gifts or to the gifts for any avid bakers on your list. They're easy to sew even for beginners, they double as great trivets, and the linen wears beautifully with time.

What You'll Need:

Two 9-inch by 9-inch pieces of linen
Two 9-inch by 9-inch pieces of batting, fusible or fleece

Sewing Pins
Sewing Machine

1. Square one piece of linen on top of one piece of batting, matching the edges as best you can, then iron to fuse together. Repeat with other pieces. The batting is what gives the potholders their cushion, protecting you from heat; in a quilt, it acts as insulation.

2. Stack the two sets linen against linen, and pin around the edges. Yes, with the batting on the outside -- we'll flip them inside out later.

Iron Batting to Linene, Potholders by Liz Stanley Say Yes  Iron Batting to Linen_Potholders by Liz Stanley_Say Yes

3. Using a sewing machine, sew along 3 sides about 1/4-inch from the edges. Sew 2/3 of the last edge, leaving a 3-inch opening near one corner; this is where you'll reach in to turn the potholder right side-out. Do that now.

4. Once it's right side-out, work the corners and sides so that your potholder is fully square. Iron it flat.

Sewing Potholders, Say Yes Liz Stanley  Ironing Linen Potholder Liz Stanley Say Yes

5. Make a final seam around the potholder 1/4-inch from all edges, closing up the hole as you go.

6. Mark with chalk where you want your quilting design to go. This part is just for decoration, so make any design you want! We went with this modern one; just be sure you make a few lines that go all the way across, to keep the batting in place over time.

Mark Linen

7. Then sew along those lines. That's it!

Linen Potholders

Photos by Liz Stanley

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Judy Gonzales
    Judy Gonzales
  • Wyndham Traxler Carter
    Wyndham Traxler Carter
Liz Stanley is founder and editor of the award winning womens and family lifestyle site, Say Yes, which has been featured by Martha Stewart, Real Simple, Parents Magazine, and The Huffington Post. When she’s not running her lifestyle site you can find her digging for treasures at local thrift stores, or planning out her next family backpacking adventure.


Judy G. February 4, 2015
I agree with Carter and you should also ad insulation.
Wyndham T. February 4, 2015
You may particularly like linen potholders, but they are a huge fire hazard. Wool on the other hand will not burn, and makes wonderful potholders. If washed and felted before making, they continue to be washable and the fleece/batting can be replaced by a 3rd layer of wool. It's a great way to recycle wool and they last forever. Depending on the weight of the wool, they are as light or as heavy as you want.