Tutorial: DIY scrap fabric coasters

So... a tutorial. It feels like it's been FOREVER. I'd actually taken most of the photos for this tutorial way back around Christmas time but had forgotten all about it. Major injury will do that to you, ha!

Scrap fabric coastersAnyway, I'm happy to be back to sharing creative ideas. These scrappy fabric coasters are my latest favorite scrapbusting project. You can use your smallest scraps to create something useful and totally giftable. I've given them to friends and family, and they all tell me how much they get used.

I use a quilt-as-you-go method to piece the tops. They're mostly random in terms of color and placement of scraps, though if I'm making a set of coasters I try to make sure that a couple of fabrics show up in each coaster so they look at least a little bit like they were meant to be a set. Binding also helps with that, since it kind of frames the patchwork.

Oh, and the insides. I cut up an old towel for the lining instead of using batting. It pleases me to recycle rather than use new materials, and the toweling is super absorbent for sweaty glasses.

So... on to making these scrap fabric coasters. (I apologize in advance for any blurry photos. My hand is still kind of shaky for taking pictures.)

For each coaster you'll need

  • Fabric scraps
  • Scrap of fabric at least 4" x 4"
  • Old towel
  • Bias tape
  • Glue stick

First, cut a 4" circle of from your towel. I used a Sizzix Circle #1 die but you can also just cut it by hand. Here's a pattern to make it easy.


Now, put your first scrap down on the towel circle. Anywhere is fine, but I like starting at one end and working my way across. Then, put another scrap on top of that one, right sides together and lined up along one edge. Sew down this edge.


Flip the piece back and iron it down. Don't worry about trimming the edges yet.


Now, add another scrap to one of the edges right sides together, and sew it down. And flip, and iron.


You can also piece together smaller scraps before sewing them down, like here.


On and on until you cover the whole circle.

Then, turn it over and trim off the edges and you've got a scrappy patchwork circle ready to become a coaster.


Cut a 4" circle from fabric for the backing. Layer it under the pieced coaster, wrong sides touching.

This step is optional, but I like to add some random quilting all over my coaster. Just a handful of straight lines going every which way.

Last step is to bind these babies.

Open out one side of your bias tape out and sew it around the coaster, raw edges aligned and right sides together. You may need to stretch the bias tape to go around the curves.

Go all the way around the coaster and overlap the beginning by about 1/2 inch.

Use a glue stick to glue the overlapping ends together.


I'm noticing now that this photo doesn't have quilting lines. This is an old photo so I'm not sure how that happened - perhaps I got ahead of myself while taking photos? The next photo has them in there, so I guess I realized my mistake and fixed it.

Then, turn the bias tape around the outside of the coaster.


Glue in place then press with an iron so the glue dries and everything stays put.



Now, just turn the coaster back over and topstitch around the bias tape. Done.


Tie them up in a pretty bow for gift-giving.


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  • Catherine Johnson says:

    I just have to rave about these coasters. Anne gave us a set of these as a gift awhile back and these are our go-to everyday coasters. They are not just cute, they are super-practical, which is more than I can say for some of the other coasters we had around here before we got these. My husband insists on turning them upside down just to bug me, but the backs are really just as pretty as the fronts. Thank you, Anne! I'm so glad to see you are back at it on the Orange Bettie blog.

  • EmbellishMePattyV LLC says:

    These are really cute. Just organized my fabric scraps and now I have a project to make.
    Thanks for sharing.

  • Pam @Threading My Way says:

    Great idea to use old towelling instead of batting. I agree, these would make great presents, Anne.

  • Hebergement web says:

    Fabric Coasters - unbelievably easy and quick to make, you don't even need interfacing, but I would slip a piece of felt into the middle of the fabric just to make it a bit fatter and less floppy! 00004000

  • Lynne says:

    I have such a hard time throwing out any scrap - what a wonderful way to finally start using them up! 🙂 Thank you!!

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