You will find this trivet so useful in the kitchen that you will want to make several. This is an easy project to start with if you are new to punch needle—you don’t need a template and can simply draw around a plate and start punching straight away.
YOU WILL NEED
Piece of monks cloth measuring 14 x 14in (36 x 36cm)
10in (25cm) no-slip hoop
Compass or something circular to draw around such as a dinner plate
T-shirt yarn in three different colours—5½oz (150g) in each colour (you could also use a bulky/chunky weight yarn)
Punch needle—Clare uses an Amy Oxford no. 14
Small pointed-blade embroidery scissors
Piece of felt measuring 10¾ x 10¾in (27 x 27cm) for the backing
1. Stretch the monks cloth over the hoop, making sure that it is taut (see page 13). Find something circular to draw around that fits within the hoop shape. Make sure that there is a minimum border of 3⁄8in (1cm) in between the edge of the circle and the frame. Use a pencil to draw around the circular object onto the monks cloth. Alternatively, you can use a compass to draw a circle onto the monks cloth.
2. Cut some 4yd (4m) lengths of yarn from the ball. Cut each piece in half lengthwise to make a thinner yarn, and roll these into balls to use. When they run out, repeat this process to prepare more yarn. Start punching the design. On this project the looped side (the reverse of the side you punch into) is the front. I started at the edge and worked my way into the middle by going round and round in circles. There is no set design for this project. You can decide when to change colour and how wide you want the circles to be.
3. When you have finished punching the design, remove the monks cloth from the hoop. Use fabric scissors to trim around the edge, leaving a 5⁄8in (1.5cm) border of unpunched monks cloth all the way around the punched design.
4. Use the fabric scissors to make small snips all around the circle at right angles from the edge of the fabric to the edge of the punched stitches. Fold the seam allowance over toward the wrong side of the punched piece so that none of the base fabric is showing on the right side. Use fabric glue to stick the seam allowance down. Try to keep the glue away from the very edge of the punched stitches, as this makes it easier to get a needle through when you sew on the backing felt later.
5. Place the circular object you used in step 1 onto the backing felt. Draw around it onto the backing felt and cut out the circle. Alternatively, use a compass to draw a circle that is the same size as your punched design onto the backing felt and cut it out. It should fi t on the back of the punched piece without overlapping the edge. If it is slightly larger, trim it down to fit. Pin the backing felt in place onto the back of the punched piece. Hand-sew it in place using slipstitch.