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Oven Mitts & Hot Pads

Audry | Posted in Fabric and Trim on

I have subscribed to Threads for several years and have been reading the forum posts for close to a year.  Both the magazine and forum are great inspirations.  I have read some really wonderful advice/suggestions here.  I recently attempted making oven mitts and hot pads.  Although this opens up a wide variety of colorful prints, I am having trouble finding the right combination of fabrics to make them “heat-proof”.  Neither poly nor cotton batting seem to be dense enough to stop the heat.  I tried lining them with a layer of teflon ironing board cover.  I tried sweatshirt fleece.  Nothing seems to work well enough to keep the heat from toasting your fingertips.  Any suggestions?

Thank you.



  1. Crafty_Manx | | #1

    Nancy's Notions has "Iron Quick Fabric": http://www.nancysnotions.com/Nancys/product_family.asp?family%5Fid=130&gift=False&mscssid=0A720AF6E24EE406592B212C709BD641 (long URL, I know, but it should take you right to the item).  It's supposed to be really good for that kind of thing, though I've never used it so I can't tell you for sure.


    1. sarahkayla | | #2

      I made a great potholder out of three layers of suede.


  2. bellefille | | #3

    Although I've never tried it for oven mitts, I would try the thermal quilted lining fabric used inside curtains to keep out the heat, and the cold.  You can buy it where they sell drapery fabric.  I used it to cover my "whole house fan" and it's quite effective.  Good luck!

    1. CTI | | #4

      "try the thermal quilted lining fabric used inside curtains to keep out the heat"

      That is a wonderful idea! Does it also help keep out the cold? I am going to try that!

      I have no experience making potholders, but learned from the "bought" ones that I needed to use them in twos or threes to keep from burning my hands.

      One hint: don't use new potholders to grasp a hot, heavy pot from the oven unless you know the potholders will keep your hands from burning from the time you remove the pot to the time you set it down--i.e., do a test drive. I have dropped a pan, and thank goodness the contents didn't spill much, using new potholders that I thought would guard me from the heat.

      Another hint: sew a few potholders together, putting the old ones inside. With enough cloth, your hands won't get burned. It's the same principal as a few layers of a terrycloth towel on both sides of the pan handle (i.e., a big layer between your hand and the hot handle).

      I don't think I explained this well. My major point is that different metals react differently to different materials that diffuse the heat. In my life I've never run across an "ordinary" pot holder that worked for really hot handles.

  3. ElonaM | | #5

    I find that a square of old towel makes a nice, thick, flexible filler for a hotpad. Likewise, a piece of wool sweater that has been washed and dried until it's thickly felted.

    1. Audry | | #6

      What wonderful suggestions!  I will definitely check out the website immediately.  Suede, terry cloth, thermal quilted fabric and even recycling older hotpads are all excellent ideas I would never had considered.  I will give them all a try.  I have a set of mitts (black and white cow fabric) which I cut out about a year ago and have sewn together twice (once with poly fill and once with cotton fill).  Needless to say, they have been torn apart twice. 

      Thank you all for your suggestions.  I will use one of your ideas, and as the saying goes, "the third time will be the charm!" 

      1. Evie | | #7

        Hi Audie--       I have a wonderful Hot pad. don't know just where I got it. could be some child made it.   It is 2 squares of cotton sewed together ,one side left open, then 3 or 4 lines of stitching, sort of a tube effect, then the tubes are filled with sand and the side stitched up. Hope I made this clear. It is old and very dirty so I keep meaning to replace it ---someday. I hesitate to sew anything filled with sand on my machine ---just have to do it by hand. Anyway it is a really good insulator for hot dishes on your table.                      Best Wishes       Janet C

        1. Audry | | #8

          Jan:  Thank you for the suggestion.  Opportunity is knocking on my door for this one.  Being a desert dweller, finding sand won't be a problem.  Also, I have an old sewing machine that I use for sun protection projects such as shade cloth, canvas car covers, and window shades.  I will let you know how it turns out.   Audie

  4. SewTruTerry | | #9

    I made pot holders years ago from a quilt block using all cotton both as filler and for the outside I believe I read (possibly in a Threads mag) that using all cotton was better than blends.  I think perhaps without knowing it the cow print may have some poly in it and that conducts the heat all too well.  Also if there is any moisture in the mitt or on your hands (like you just finished the dishes) and you go to grab something out of the oven the moisture on your hands or the mitt will conduct that heat quicker than a jack rabbit.  Hope this helps.  By the way the oven pads I used only a single layer of Warm and Natural and have no problems getting things out of the oven.

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