Here's a tutorial--I didn't invent this. I've seen different versions of this process in a lot of places, including on an episode of one of the TV quilt shows last year.
Step 1: Cut 4 squares of fabric measuring 6-1/2 inches. I like large mug rugs so I start with larger squares. sometimes, I use 4 different colors or fabrics. In this example, I used 2 fabrics.
Fold these squares into triangles and set them aside.
Step 2: Cut one square of fabric measuring 7 inches and a piece of batting slightly larger. I use cotton batting but you can use anything you like. This fabric will be your backing. Then, quilt these two layers. I use my walking foot and sew random straight lines or free hand curves. Because it's a mug rug, I take about 2 minutes to do the quilting--nothing fancy!! After quilting, trim down to 6-1/2 inches.
Layer your 4 triangles with the RIGHT SIDE of the back facing UP. You'll be turning this inside out eventually so the backing will be on the back of the mug rug.
|Add first yellow triangle|
|Add first blue triangle|
|Add 2nd yellow triangle|
|The 2nd blue triangle is added and is on the top left.|
Step 4: Sew a straight stitch seam around all four sides. I use a quarter inch seam. Sew straight from one end to the other. In the photo below, you can see my seams. I clipped a bit off each corner to help me turn the mug rug inside out. You can just see the backing inside. I'll use the wooden point turner to help me get the corners shaped up. Turn the mug rug inside out!
|Poking the corners to get the mug rug square.|
|Finished mug rug.|
OptionsAdd more quilting--As an option, you can add more quilting by machine or hand after you turn it inside out. But remember that the back of the mug rug will be quilted. Sometimes I quilt a circle, spiral or small square right in the center.
Make bigger mug rugs! I've used this same process to make a larger rug for my teapot to sit on--I'm a tea drinker!
Use a pieced square instead of the triangles. Sometimes I use improvisational pieced blocks as the back OR the front or BOTH. If I don't use the triangles, then I leave ONE side partially open when I sew around the edge in step 4. Then, I turn it inside out like a pillow case and stitch the 4th side closed by sewing around all 4 sides with a decorative stitch.