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Tutorial: 15 Minute Coasters

Mug on coaster

It's our very first tutorial on the cool cottons blog, and we decided to start simple.  This easy coaster pattern is a great beginner project, a perfect way to use up your scrap, or an easy we're-leaving-in-20-minutes-for-a-dinner-party-and-I-want-to-bring-a-hostess-gift gift.  I was first introduced to this patter a few years ago when a friend of my housemate gifted a set of these coasters to our house.  We stared at them for a long while trying to figure out the secret to their construction.  No top stitching at all? How is that possible?  Here, we share the secret with you.

First, a shot of the finished product:

The trick? The top of the coaster is just like a cardboard box top, with overlapping rectangles and a tiny hole in the middle.  Here's what you'll need:

Four fabrics for the coaster top
One fabric for the coaster back
A scrap of quilt batting, or heavy interfacing

Cut your six pieces of fabric to 4 1/2" square.  (With a 1/4" seam allowance on all four sides of the coaster, your finished coaster will be 4" square.)

In a real hurry?  Stack your fabrics on top of each other and cut through all six layers at once.  You'll need a very sharp rotary blade, but four cuts and you're done!

Fold your four front fabrics in half and press them to set the crease.

Next we layer the four top pieces just like a cardboard box top.  The fold of each piece should point toward the center of the coaster.

Now, take your bottom fabric and place it wrong side up on your coaster top:

Then place your quilt batting or interfacing on top of that:

Sew all the way around with a 1/4" seam allowance:

Clip your corners:

And turn the whole thing inside out from the center:

Press and you're done:

Now, time for coffee!

Want to see the finished coaster in person?  We've got the demo coaster in the shop for you to examine.

Reader Comments (7)

Very cool! These look awesome and a great way to use up some of my scraps. Thanks!

March 2, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBeverly

Good Job! I've read a ton of free Tutorials online and they all come down to how clear the directions are and how informative the photos are. You guys did a great job photographing that process to make it easily understandable.

March 2, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTracie B

Those are awesome! I never would have thought of that, I love the finished product with no top stitching!

March 2, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKari

Thanks, Tracie! I think most sewers are visual people, so we'll always aim to have loads of photographs on our tutorials. If you like step-by-step pictures, we highly recommend any of the patterns by cool cottons teacher Sue Terpin. She includes photographs of every single step to help keep you from getting lost or making a wrong turn.

March 2, 2011 | Unregistered Commentercoolcottons

Really nice! I want to make some immediately. That coffee press looks just like mine! :)

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterClaire

These are so cute--and so very clever!! I'm definitely planning on making up sets for hostess gifts... Thanks for sharing!

March 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterPatty

Love this! Excellent job of photographing steps for directions! Will be making some of these!

August 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJulia Essary

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