I finished a third potholder today. I used the thermal stitch to make this potholder as I did with the second potholder. It didn’t take long for me to determine that the thermal stitch is the best stitch for a potholder. When I used the first two potholders to remove a heavy hot pot from the oven, I could feel steam coming from the double layer potholder on my palm. I felt nothing with the thermal one.
That was not a typo. I felt steam on my palm. I think the surface of the first potholder became superheated and moisture in the cotton changed to steam that seeped through the openings on the other side. The steam was not hot enough to cause me to drop the pot, but I prefer to feel nothing on my palm when I am removing something from the oven. Ater I placed the pot on the stovetop, I turned the thermal potholder over to the side that had direct contact with the pot to feel how hot it was. It was just really warm. Since I used the same cotton to make both potholders, the stitch is the key factor.
I did not keep track of how long it took to make the thermal stitch potholders. I made each one over the course of a week. I washed the first one I made yesterday. It shrunk 1 1/4″ on one side and 1 3/4″ on the other. I washed it in warm water instead of the cold water I should have used. I put it in the dryer with some towels, but it was not completely dry when the towels were dry, so I laid it flat on the kitchen counter. It needed some blocking anyway, so I tried to stretch it into a square shape and let it air dry. The second thermal potholder could use some blocking now, but I’ll just wait until after it is washed as well.
If you make a thermal potholder or already have one you’ve made, let me know in the comments. Include how you think it compares to other potholders or towels you have used to remove things from the oven.