Saturday, 14 September 2019

Tutorial: Scrappy Happy Trivet

Do you have some pretty fabric scraps that you cannot part with, but don't know what to use them for? Then this quick tutorial might be exactly what you need. Easy step-by-step instructions will help you create a sweet and useful trivet featuring all your precious scraps and make you smile every time you use it. Let's not waste any time and get sewing!

Things you need:
  • assorted fabric scraps
  • 7.5"x7.5" piece of white cotton for the backing
  • a large piece of fusible web
  • 7.5"x7.5" piece of batting
  • 7.5"x7.5" piece of Insul-Bright Insulated Lining (if you do not have this, replace it with two layers of cotton batting)
  • 7.5"x7.5" piece of pretty cotton, canvas or linen for the back
  • binding about 30"
  • a piece of ribbon
  • baking paper (Yes! You read it right!)
  • scissors (for fabric and craft)
  • small ruler
  • rotary cutter
  • iron
Before we begin, make sure to press all the fabric scraps and the piece of cotton for the backing with a warm iron that they are crease free.

1. Apply the fusible web to the back of the scraps. Take a large piece of fusible web and arrange all the fabric scraps on top close to each other. Place a piece of baking paper on top and press with a hot iron without steam. The baking paper helps keep your iron from sticking to the fusible web. Peel the baking paper off and roughly cut out all the small pieces using your craft scissors.

2. Using a small ruler and a rotary cutter, trim all the pieces into small rectangles and squares. This step can be a bit tedious, make sure to cut plenty of pretty pieces so you can use them later.

Note: Use a separate rotary cutter for paper and any fabric backed with fusible web.

3. Now is the fun part. Let's get creative here and "tell" a story or just make a cute mess by arranging all the pieces on top of the white fabric overlapping the pieces. Make sure to place larger pieces around the edges. Once you are happy with your arrangement, press well with a hot iron. You can press pieces as you go or press once you arrange all the scraps in place. Just in case, cover the patchwork with baking paper to keep your iron clean, but be careful not to move any of the pieces.

A few helpful tips:
  • play around with pieces before removing the papers
  • try different arrangements
  • place same colours separately
  • make the cute prints your focal point

This step is best done on your ironing board so you won't have to move anything. Be careful removing the papers from the back of the pretty scraps, making sure not to pull hard to prevent the stretching of the fabric and fraying of the edges. The back side is going to be a little bit sticky, that will help keep the pieces in place before you set them with the hot iron.

4. Once you are happy with your scrappy arrangement, sandwich all the layers and quilt it. Place a piece of cotton for the back facing the wrong side up on the table. Top it with a piece of Insul-Bright, then a piece of batting and place the scrappy panel on top facing the right side up. Pin in a few places.

5. Now let's quilt our little block. Start in the centre, stitch around one piece using a smaller size stitch. Once you finished one piece, move on to the next one without cutting the thread. Go as far as you can in one move if you need to, stitch back and move on to the next piece.

Trim the block on all four sides making sure that it is square.

6. Take a small piece of a ribbon and attach it at the middle of the top of the trivet.

7. Attach the binding. If you would like to make your own binding, cut a piece of fabric about 30" long and 2.5" wide. Fold in half lengthwise and press with a hot iron. All the sides of the trivet are straight without any curves, so you can use a straight grain binding.

To make sure that you have enough binding, place the binding around all the four sides of the trivet overlapping the ends at least 4".

Start at the bottom edge, leaving a tail about 4" long, align the raw edge of the binding with the bottom edge of the trivet. You can use pins or wonder clips to secure the binding in place. Pin only one side at this stage and stitch with a 1/4" seam allowance. Stop 1/4" from the edge, leave the needle down and lift the foot. Pivot the trivet and stitch diagonally to the corner of the trivet. Remove the trivet and cut the thread.

Now we are going to stitch the next side. Fold the binding straight to the right to form a diagonal fold, press with fingers.

Fold back to the left aligning the fold of the binding with the edge of the trivet on the right and the raw edge of the binding and the side of the trivet. Pin and stitch with the 1/4" allowance stopping again at the 1/4" from the end. I marked the line so you can better see where to sew and where to stop. Stop 1/4" from the edge, leave the needle down and lift the foot. Pivot the trivet and stitch diagonally to the corner of the trivet. Remove the trivet and cut the thread.

Repeat with the next side. On the bottom side stitch only about 2" from the corner.

Finish the binding. Fold the ends of the binding in the opposite sides leaving a tiny gap of about 1/8". The binding will stretch enough when you are stitching it in place. Press with fingers or iron. You can also mark the folds on both ends.

Open the binding and put both ends right sides together. Stitch on the marked line.

Note: if the ends of the binding are a bit too short to work with, rip the start and the end of the binding seam a little bit to have longer pieces to work with. Also use a wonder clip to hold the sides of the trivet together.

Trim and press the seam open with your fingers. Fold the binding and align the raw edge of the binding with the edge of the trivet, pin and stitch overlapping the start and end of the binding seam.

8. Fold over the binding towards the back of the trivet and clip in place with wonder clips. Stitch the binding by hand.

Note: You can run the thread through a piece of beeswax to give it a bit more strength and prevent it from tangling.

Check out the videos (links below) on Instagram #stitchingnotesvideos on how to stitch the binding and the corners by hand.

9. Use a few strands of embroidery floss or any other thread to stitch two crosses on each side of the loop to secure it in place. You can also use buttons.

You are done! Enjoy your own scrappy happy trivet that I am sure will make you smile every time you use it. The raw edges will fray a tiny bit with washing and every day use, that will only add more charm to your scrappy trivet.

If you use this tutorial, please do share your beautiful makes on Instagram using #stitchingnotes, #stitchingnotespattern, #scrappyhappytrivet hashtags. I would love to see them all! Larisa xox


  1. Thank you so much for this wonderful tutorial. The instructions are so clear and easy to follow. I love the fabric you used for the binding. Could you please share what it is? Thank you again.

  2. This really is such a cute trivet and such a wonderful way to use up scraps! Thank you for the wonderful tutorial. I can't wait to get started!

  3. Such a fun project and uses tiny treasures, I will definately have to make one. Thank you friend.

  4. Beautiful - love the little crosses on the ribbon at the end - so special!

  5. When you fold back the binding, what is the measurement of the foldback