It’s that travel time of year again, which means a lot of flat irons and curling wands need to be toted while still hot. Here’s a simple tutorial to sew your own flat iron holder to protect your stuff. (You can also use it to tote a curling wand or iron.) This project was easy enough for my intermediate (junior high) Winterim sewing class to complete with great results. Follow along with words, lots of pictures, and a free pattern for personal use!
Supplies you will need for a DIY Flat-iron Holder:
–A fat quarter, OR ⅓-yard of cut fabric yardage
–10” x 13” piece of fleece fabric OR Warm&Natural batting
–10” x 13” piece of aluminized fabric (aka “ironing board cover fabric,” like this)
–7 inches of ½” wide twill tape
–24 inches of ⅜” – ¾” wide grosgrain ribbon
–matching or coordinating thread, your choice
–spray adhesive for fabric (optional)
–(18 inches of bias tape that you will create from your main fabric)
–Fray Check or clear nail polish
How to sew a Flat-iron holder:
First, prepare the “quilted” fabric for the outer layer:
3) (Using a walking foot if you’ve got one,) machine stitch along the pencil lines to create a quilted effect on your fabric. Use a long stitch length (about a 4) and don’t bother with back stitching on either end. Clip your loose threads.
4) Cut the aluminized fabric the same size as your quilted piece. Layer it, right sides together with the quilted fabric, lining up one of the 10” edges (the one you want to be the top). Stitch along that 10” edge, using a ¼” seam allowance.
5) Turn right side out and press. Use more adhesive spray to stick the wrong sides of your fabric pieces together. Topstitch ¼” along the pressed edge – this forms the finished top edge of your flat-iron holder.
6) Use the pattern piece provided (below) to cut your final shape, then put it aside and make the pocket.
Now, prepare the pocket for the front:
7) Cut the pocket from the main fabric, using the pattern provided. (I was pretty specific with mine and made sure the designs would match up perfectly on the pocket and the holder, which made for a nice finished product, but makes it harder for you to see detail in future pictures. Sorry!)
8) Press under 1” along the slanted top edge of the pocket. Open it out, place the left edge of your twill tape along the pressed fold, and fold over the remaining fabric edge over the right side of the twill tape and carefully press it down. Then fold the whole top hem down and press and pin in place. (The twill tape will be sandwiched/rolled inside the fabric.)
Now, sew on the pocket:
10) With right sides together, line up the stitching line of the pocket with the stitching line of the main holder. Pin carefully and stitch that vertical seam to attach the pocket to the holder. Don’t forget to back stitch at the top to reinforce it! Don’t worry if all your outer edges don’t match up perfectly—we’ll trim them later. Fold the pocket so the right side of the fabric is up and press it in place.
11) Optional—if you are a stickler for “finished” seam edges, you may serge the edge of the pocket seam before you stitch it on, OR you may press the exposed seam allowance in half and stitch it down to itself after you sew it on. But it’s inside a pocket and won’t fray too much if you don’t do either.
12) Flatten and smooth all the layers in place and pin the raw outer edges together. Baste around the sides and bottom, catching in the pocket, then trim the edges for a smooth finish—I’m trimming off a bit of extra pocket fabric here.
Now, attach the ribbon ties:
13) Find the center of your grosgrain ribbon. (Let’s practice: it’s pronounced “GROWgrain.” That’s just one of the little things my mom taught me when I was young.) Pin it to the lower, slanted edge of the top of your pocket. Stich it on, through all the layers, making a box pattern, with plenty of back stitching going on. This will keep it from pulling off, and will also reinforce your pocket edge better—both are spots that will get the most stress from use.
14) Cut the ends of the ribbon at a slant and apply Fray Check or clear nail polish to keep them from fraying.
Now, finish the flat iron holder:
15) Fold the holder in half, wrong sides together, matching the finished top edge and side edges. The lower curves might not match perfectly—yet. Pin along outer edges. Once again, baste along the very outer edges of the holder. Now you can trim any tiny bits that don’t line up exactly. Check both sides.
16) Create the bias tape for the edges: Cut a bias strip (on a 45-degree angle) that is 18” long and 2⅛” wide, from your main fabric. (Yes, it all fits on a fat quarter if you are careful.) Press it in half the long way, then open it out and press each raw edge into the center and press again, folded. (Which is a pain, even if it’s only 18 inches long, so you could try this bias-tape hack instead: Pin a giant needle through your ironing board cover, leaving a 1” space under the needle. Then slide your fabric strip under it so it becomes your third hand while you fold and pull the fabric through and press with your other two hands. Genius!)
17) This is the trickiest part, but we’re almost done! Open out your newly-created bias tape and match and pin one long, raw edge of it to the back of your holder (the side without the pocket), leaving a bit of extra bias tape hanging off on each end.
18) Stitch along the outer pressed fold line of the bias tape (should be about ½”), back stitching at both ends.
19) Open out the bias tape from the holder and press your seam flat. Trim any spots that poke out, and trim the pieces that extend beyond the edges to about ½”. We’re going to wrap the bias tape around to the front and pin and sew it down, but first we have to tuck and finish the end corners:
Now follow the pictures:
20) With the bias tape opened out, fold in the extra ½” on each end. Fold the outer edge of the bias tape in on its first pressed fold line. Fold the bias tape in once more along it center pressed fold line to complete your finished edge. Do the same thing on both ends. Then wrap the rest of the bias tape around to the front and use lots of pins to hold the folded bias tape edges in place.
21) Starting from the top edge, edge-stitch the folded edge of the bias tape in place, using your sewing machine. (If you watch carefully as you sew, you can see the previous line of stitching where you attached the first side of the bias tape. Keeping this stitching line just barely hidden under your current folded edge of bias tape and line of stitching will prevent your bobbin threads from getting stitch up onto the back side of the bias tape and will make your finished project look really polished.) Make sure to back stitch. Clip your threads and you are done!
The first time through is always the hardest, but it wasn’t that bad, right? Now I’ll bet you’ve got extra bits of fabric that you could hurry up and make into a second one for a gift, no? Get on it!
You can download a pdf pattern for personal use only, here: Flat Iron Holder Pattern.
Here’s another project we sewed in my beginning Winterim sewing class: ruffled throw pillow.