Thomas from Way Cool Kid and Thomas Knauer Sews is here today to share a Teapot Trivet tutorial with some special embroidery designs for you to download. Take the Mug Rug sensation a step further! You can learn more about Thomas in his introduction, and be sure to look for his first fabric line this fall from Andover.

From Thomas: I know that Mug Rugs are all the rage right now, but in our house we probably have more teapots than we do teacups. (You’ll just have to trust me on this ’cause I’m writing this while on vacation and my beloved teapots are miles and miles away.) Since the mugs are getting all the love, my dear teapots have been feeling left out. So, I thought it was time to start making them some Teapot Trivets.

A bit larger than a Mug Rug, Teapot Trivets are the perfect size for some lovely embroidery. Now I’m new to embroidery, but I whipped up these three designs using some creatures that you just may be seeing more of later this year. You can go ahead and grab the PDF of my “Tea for Two… Or More” designs right here.

Off to work! I embroidered these in advance, but a little fabric, a little floss, an afternoon with a cup of tea, and whiz-bang you’ll have one of these done. I must admit that I am enormously charmed by a simple backstitch varying between one, two, and three strands of floss. (You can find an easy backstitch how-to in the Sew,Mama,Sew! Pocket Stitch Book.)


  • Your embroidered design. (You can print out the Tea for Two Embroidery Designs here.)
  • A piece of backing a couple of inches wider and taller than your embroidered fabric.
  • A piece of batting the same size as your backing.
  • Enough fabric to make binding strips. (My trivets always seem to need slightly more than a bolt width… Typical me!)
  • Rotary cutter, cutting mat, needle, thread, scissors, sewing machine, etc…
  • Mr. Rippy (seam ripper, I always need him around)
  • Sewing glasses (You may not need them, but I do.)
  • Marking pen/pencil (I like the Pilot Frixion erasable pen; it disappears with the wave of an iron.)

    Step One: Mark your quilting lines onto your embroidered fabric. Since these are pretty small I like to just throw down a few seemingly random lines. A little asymmetry goes a long way in my book. Once that’s done, sandwich your embroidery, batting, and backing and pin.

    Step Two: Quilt it. Quick and easy. I like using thread that matches the fabric I embroidered on so the quilting doesn’t compete with the embroidery too much, but I love letting it hang out there on the back. A little hand quilting also works wonderfully with a bit of pearl cotton.

    Step Three: Trim it down and give it a quick ironing to get ride of those pesky pen marks (If you used a Frixion pen– And I’m not a paid spokesman, I just like the darned thing.).

    Step Four: Whip up those binding strips. Since this trivet is 10″ x 10″ I needed just over the bolt width to actually be able to pull the binding off. I like cutting my binding strips at 2.5″ for these, but a wider binding is actually quite fly.

    Step Five: Attach your binding strips to the front. Not gonna walk through that here ’cause I bet you all are far better at this than I am, but I do love referring to Heather Bailey’s handy-dandy guide just to keep myself honest.

    Step Six: Hand stitch your binding to the back and lickety-split you are done: a little Teapot Trivet so your teapots don’t get jealous of all the love you’ve been giving your mugs as of late. I think it may just be time for a Teapot Trivet swap.

    Now don’t forget to download the Tea for Two… Or More designs, and thanks to Sew,Mama,Sew! for having me. Now, where did I put my tea?