60-Minute Gift: Herringbone Hot Pads

Combine a herringbone pattern with the popular zig zag for a fun, unique pot holder and trivet that is self binding. Or use the blocks to make a quilt! Great for Christmas gifts, teacher gifts and using up extra charm packs!

  • 1 Simply Color charm pack or charm pack of your choice
  • 1 yard of fabric for backing or four 14x14 inch squares
  • 1/2 yard batting or eight 10x10 inch squares
  • 1/2 yard insul-bright Insulating material or four 10x10 inch squares

    I'm so excited to be here! I've been making these hot pads like crazy! You can hop over to my blog, Melanie Dramatic, to see several other examples in various Moda lines along with a few other ideas of what you can do with this design!

    You'll start with one charm pack! (I cut down a layer cake to 5-inch squares since that's what I had!)

    Cut your charm pack into 1 1/2 inch strips.  From one charm pack you'll get 3 'sets' of strips.

    Cut 1.5 inch strips

    I prefer to use one set at a time while sewing.  Set two groups aside and sort the first stack by color.  Having them sorted into color groups helps me make sure I'm evenly distributing the colors and patterns throughout!

    Sort into Colors

    Now it's time to start sewing strips together using a 1/4 inch seam.
    Sewing strips

    Alternating sides, continue to add strips.  (I finger press the seams down toward the bottom of the 'V' as I sew....although getting up to iron each seam during the process would be better exercise...)

    Add strips Until stack is gone

    Continue sewing until your first stack is gone!  You'll have a really fun, colorful, long herringbone strip!

    Herringbone Strip

    Iron the seams down (toward the bottom of the 'V'). 


    Square the top and cut two 11-inch sections.  (You will have left over.  Save that to start sewing your next strip set.)  Our hot pads will be 10 inches, but that little bit of extra length allows you to perfectly match seams.

    Square top

    Next you will trim off the extra on each side.  You want each rectangle to be 5 1/2 inches x 11 inches.  I match up the 2 1/2 inch mark on my ruler with the bottom/right 'V' for the first cut.  Then I rotate and cut the block to 5 1/2 inches width.

    Trim_sides Rectangle

    Pin your rectangles together at each seam. Seams will all face down. Do not worry about lining up the top and bottom.  Getting the seams to mach is more important!  Sew together with a 3/8 inch seam allowance.
    Pin together
    Press center seam allowance open.

    Press seam open

    Trim your block to 10 inches x 10 inches.

    block will be 10x10

    You'll need one 14x14inch piece of fabric for the back, two 10x10 inch squares of batting and one 10x10 inch square of Insul-bright insulation.  It is a lot of layers, but I really like the extra sturdy feel this gives the hot pad - plus with the Insul-bright and extra batting, I'm not afraid to pull something out of the oven! (If you're going to use it solely for decoration, you could use one or two layers of batting only.)
    all layers

    Place the Insul-bright in between the two layers of batting and pin all layers together.  Spray basting also works well to hold everything in place.

    Pin all layers

    Quilt as desired.  I love the look of following the seams with my 1/4 inch foot.


    Carefully even batting and top layers ONLY if needed with scissors.  Next cut off the excess backing fabric so it is 1-inch larger than the top on each side.  The unit will measure 12x12.

    Trim to size

    Fold and iron the extra inch of backing fabric in half so that it meets up with the raw edge of your hot pad.  Then fold again to the top of the hot pad and secure in place.  (I was using bobby pins at this point but my new favorite method is using school glue to hold fabric in place. Simply set with a hot dry iron!)

    self binding self binding

    Fold your corner diagonally so that it meets with the raw edge of the next side.  Then continue by folding that edge in half and then again up onto the hot pad, just as you did on the first side.  Continue working your way around the hot pad until all four sides are ready to sew.

    self binding self binding

    Sew binding in place.  Get your stitching as close to the inside edge of the binding as you can.  And if you're using bobby pins or other gadgets to hold the binding in place, please be sure to remove them as you sew!  (If you switch to glue, you won't have to worry about that anymore!)

    self binding


    One charm pack will make four hot pads.  (Use your left over strip to start sewing another set for more hot pads!)  And don't forget to come over to my blog to see them made in other Moda fabrics and a few other projects I've made with these fun blocks!  I have to say, I'm sorta in love with the quilt. :-)



    Ann Marie @ 16 Muddy Feet said...

    Oh I like these!!!! Thanks for the tutorial!

    Chartreuse Moose said...

    Charming! Love the chevron design and this simplifies it greatly!
    Thank you for another delightful post!

    2MuchFun said...

    I love this idea and am going to make some. Thanks

    trish said...

    These are awesome!!

    Sheila said...

    Beautiful hot pad! Great tutorial. I can't wait to try to make one for my table.

    Shakey Stitches said...

    They look great. I love how you did the binding. I'm going to have to try it

    Patty said...

    I love you tutorial! I am a little confused about how you start sewing together the stips to form the chevron....

    Melanie said...

    Hi Patty. You just need to form an L shape and then sew one side together. I use leaders and enders, so I sew one entire side of the L, BUT don't turn the corner.

    Magnolia Bay Quilts said...


    Angel said...

    Really great Melanie! You make the binding look so easy. I'm excited to make a few of these!

    Sondra said...

    adorable, love these! great tutorial.

    java diva said...

    Oh they are lovely! What a fun way to make these, thank you Melanie!

    Amy DeCesare said...

    I really love these hot pads, and the technique looks like fun! I'm off to check out the other versions right now.

    Chrissy said...

    wow I would never have thought of using bobby pins for the binding. thanks and now have time to make some for Christmas presents.

    SarahB said...

    Love the herringbone design! I think I will have to make some of these for Christmas. :) Thanks Melanie!

    Elsa said...

    Great tutorial ~ thanks so much!

    jenni said...

    I don't have a charm pack I want to cut into, but I'm pulling fabrics today to make a mug rug! I love, love, love this!

    DonnaP said...

    I love your tutorial and design but I have to admit I love the idea of bobby pins even more! Now THAT is a great idea! Thank you for the pattern!

    Luisa said...

    Love this so much I'm going to make some today.

    Susan said...

    These are lovely. I didn't have enough material to make use of your nifty idea about backing and binding.

    Here is a link to the jpg of one of the mug rugs I made this afternoon using your idea.

    thank you.


    Melanie said...

    Susan! I LOVE it!!! Thank you for sharing! So festive with the Christmas fabric.

    Home Sewn said...

    These are awesome! Thank you for the great directions!!

    harleywife57 said...

    LOVE IT!! thanks Melanie ! glad to see you on MBS !

    Marion said...

    What a smart tutorial ! I especially like the idea to work with glue ! makes life so much easier. thanks again, Marion

    pcflamingo said...

    Just finishing up some in Christmas fabrics - what a quick (relatively) and easy gift!

    Anna Maria Quagliero said...

    Thanks for the tutorial, I'm going to have to try it.

    Celia Irby said...

    Perfect this is a great tutorial and so very cute good to get rid of a stash too and yes every member and friend I have would love a set of these great idea & great job

    Julie Crooks said...

    I'm currently making a batik table cloth with this method. I'm going to have to make some matching hot pads, now. :-) LOVE!

    Chloe Horton said...

    Just got a good design idea for personalizing and decorating my own stuff to make them look more beautiful than usual. Been searching for concepts in designing and this is just perfect, thank you so much for this.

    Chloe H.

    Karen said...

    I am in the process of making this hot pad now and I was wondering about cutting the second strip. Do you cut the second strip the exact same way as the first or is there a change to keep both sides the same? Hope this makes sense.


    Annie Rego said...

    I have been admiring this pattern for a while and have decided to make some.
    Has anyone added a loop to one corner to hang the hot pad from a cabinet handle??

    Jedi Craft Girl said...

    Those are so quick and easy!! I can't wait to get into my scraps and sew some!! Thanks!

    Bonnie Liberman said...

    I absolutely love love love these hot pads! But my sewing skills are not the greatest and I need more pictures and exactly where all the sewing lines are. Please read this comment and post more pictures. Thank you.

    Jordan Sterne said...

    This is the best gift i have ever been made because it took really very less time to made and it looks very graceful and more attractive & worthy than anythings else. Chair Covers

    Sandra J said...

    I love these, Melanie! A gal in my guild had made a set and showed them at our September meeting, so I had to go check them out. I've already used the first one I made, washed and dried it in the dryer, and I love how it crinkled up. This is fabric left over from my Seaside Rose quilt that I have finally got finished and ready to quilt now. I pieced the backs out of leftover, too..why not?! I used a Sulky Blendable 12 weight on one and 30 weight on the other for the quilting. Here is a link (first time I've done this, so hope it works) to the first of two pics I took. Hope it takes you to the second pic too as they're on my Flickr page.

    Gayle said...

    Love this, just what I need for a Christmas exchange present

    blocksandmore said...

    A great tutorial never goes out of style.
    I could make these all day.

    SpottsCrafts said...
    This comment has been removed by the author.
    SpottsCrafts said...

    These look really easy and quick - love that you also use hair clips to hold the binding! I use them all the time and find they are so much better than a lot of other clips.