Big Stitch Coasters Tutorial

big stitch coasters tutorial . carolyn friedlander

These big stitch coasters are one of my favorite quickie projects that get used often around my house. Not only are they a great way to show off some favorite fabrics and/or colors, but they are also a great way to practice your big stitch hand quilting! Of course, you could machine quilt these as well!

big stitch coasters . carolyn friedlander


Supplies + Materials (to make four coasters): (See here for some of my favorite Big Stitch Quilting supplies.)

+ Four 5″ squares for coaster fronts

+ Four 6″ squares for coaster backs

+ Four 5 1/2″ squares thermal batting (such as Insul Bright)

+ Circle Template (below)

circle template for big stitch coasters_carolyn friedlander-1


+ Other Supplies: quilting thread (such as Sashiko, Perle Cotton, 12wt cotton, etc), quilting needle, thimble, marking utensil, scissors, pins, 1″ bias tape (see below).

big stitch coaster supplies

BIAS TAPE: make it! (or buy it.)

Cut 1 7/8″ strips on the bias and use 25mm bias tape maker to create your own. (You’ll need roughly 18″ of tape for each coaster.)

making bias tape

making bias tape . carolyn friedlander

making bias tape . carolyn friedlander

1. FOLD: fold and press coaster fronts in half and in half again.

fold fabric coast fronts . carolyn friedlander

fold fabric coast fronts . carolyn friedlander

2. MARK, CUT: align Circle Template with folds, mark arcs and cut along line through all layers.

mark the coasters . carolyn friedlander

Cut the coasters . carolyn friedlander

3. BASTE: layer coaster front (RIGHT side UP), batting and coaster back (RIGHT side DOWN). Baste layers together.

big stitch coasters tutorial-baste layers . carolyn friedlander

big stitch coasters tutorial-baste layers . carolyn friedlander

big stitch coasters tutorial-baste layers . carolyn friedlander

4. STITCH: using thick quilting thread and hand quilting needle, stitch through all layers. I followed the folds, but you can get as creative with this step as you’d like! Repeat for all remaining coasters.

big stitch coasters tutorial-stitch layers . carolyn friedlander


big stitch coasters tutorial-stitch layers . carolyn friedlander

big stitch coasters tutorial-stitch layers . carolyn friedlander

5. BIND, ENJOY: Trim excess batting and backing, and bind all edges. Enjoy! (Psst, binding tutorial here.)

big stitch coasters in collection CF . carolyn friedlander

big stitch coasters in collection CF . carolyn friedlander

Here are some other related posts to check out.

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10 Responses to Big Stitch Coasters Tutorial

  1. Carmen August 14, 2014 at 10:04 am #

    Thank you for articulating my own thoughts on making and sewing, Carolyn!

    I find that making things for myself is an incredibly affirming process — I’ve purchased far less clothing over the past few years because I will now walk into clothing stores and think, “hey, I know how (or can figure out how) to do that.” Of course, we can’t learn to do everything, and we won’t have time to make all the things we want, but it’s empowering to be able to make even a few things that we can be proud of or give to others. In terms of sewing, I think it’s generally more expensive to make our own stuff, but I’m happy engaging with my hobbies rather than watching TV or something. (I have a degree in film studies, and it’s remarkable how my film spectatorship has completely plummeted. Nothing against the art at all, but I’m rarely in the mood to just sit back and watch!)

    I can also completely relate to “unplugging” via my sewing. I’ve always felt that sewing allows me to make every single decision in a project, and there’s really no risk! Something beautiful will emerge if I make the “right” choices, and I’ll learn something by making the “wrong” choices.

    Most of all, I wholeheartedly agree with you that we are so, so lucky that we can choose to create in our spare time. All the more reason to be mindful of the process!

    • carolynfriedlander August 18, 2014 at 11:11 am #

      I love hearing your thoughts, Carmen! I totally agree. I especially love that you mentioned the low-risk aspect. In the end, it is just fabric and if it doesn’t go perfectly, then you at least learn a ton that you will take with you to your next project–and the potential reward is totally worth it either way! Good stuff.

  2. Gata Hudson July 31, 2020 at 3:22 pm #

    I’m loving this tutorial but having trouble with the template….couldn’t print an accurate copy. Can you tell me what the length of the fold is?

  3. Gata Hudson July 31, 2020 at 3:25 pm #

    ooops, never mind! I figured out how to properly print!! Can’t wait to make some of these! Thank you.

    • carolyn friedlander July 31, 2020 at 4:40 pm #

      Oh good! Glad it’s worked out, Gata. Happy sewing!

  4. Francesca Di Leo August 23, 2020 at 9:02 pm #

    i just made these today following your tutorial. however, i just can’t figure out how you got your binding NOT to pucker…. mine look awful.

    • carolyn friedlander August 28, 2020 at 3:02 pm #

      Hi Francesca! I’m glad you have the coasters a try. I get asked this so much, that I put together a tutorial, which you can find on my YouTube channel or posted on the blog today. Happy sewing!


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