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ScrapBusters: French Press Cozy

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Sew4Home lives in Coffee Land. The beautiful Pacific Northwest is home to Starbucks® , Seattle's Best® and Peet's Coffee & Tea®. We're never more than five steps from a barista. However, we also like to have lots of ways to make coffee within the comfort of our homes. The French press style coffee maker has seen a resurgence of popularity in recent years. These contraptions make an awesome cup of coffee, but if you let the press stand for any length of time, the coffee goes cold. Enter the French Press Cozy, brainchild of Sew4Home seamstress team member, Julia Chapman. Her original design used an off-the-shelf placemat. We changed it up to be a ScrapBusters project. Stitch one up faster than you can say, "grande skinny double-shot latte hot vanilla no whip."

The pattern provided below as a download is for a standard Bodum French Press, measuring 6½" high x 14⅞" in circumference with a 4½" handle opening. A seam allowance of ⅜" is included in the pattern.

Test this pattern on your own French press by cutting it out and wrapping it around and through the handle, remembering that ⅜" will be taken up all around. Too big? Fold it down and cut to fit (we show you how we did that below). Too small? Measure by how much, then redraw around the pattern onto a larger sheet of paper, adding the extra amount to all sides. As always... remember to add in ⅜" for the seams.

Our recommendation is for a heavy home décor or upholstery weight fabric. The heavier weight helps with heat retention and acts as a "hot pad," allowing you to safely grasp the French press to move it from counter to table.  

We used thermal batting (Insul-Bright) as the insulating center of our cozy samples. You could substitute regular batting or even layers of flannel. 

Sewing Tools You Need

Fabric and Other Supplies

  • Scrap or ½ yard of 20" + wide fabric; you need at least 14" - 16" in height in order to get a nice fussy cut on the fold.
  • 5"- 8" of ¾" wide sew-in Velcro®
  • Scrap or ¼ yard of insulating fabric: such as flannel, a batting remnant or Insul-Bright thermal batting (what we used)
  • All purpose thread to match fabric
  • See-through ruler
  • Fabric pen or pencil
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Scissors or rotary cutter and mat
  • Seam gauge
  • Seam ripper
  • Straight pins
  • Tape measure

Getting Started

  1. Download and print our French Press Cozy-Piece 1 and French Press Cozy-Piece 2.
    IMPORTANT: This pattern consists of TWO 8½" x 11" sheets. You must print these PDF files at 100%. DO NOT SCALE to fit the page.
  2. Cut out the two pattern pieces along the solid lines.
  3. Butt together the two pieces to create the full pattern, using the assembly arrows on the pattern. Do NOT overlap. Tape together.
    NOTE: As mentioned above, this pattern is sized for a standard Bodum French Press, measuring 6½" high x 14⅞" in circumference with a 4½" handle opening. See the notes below on measuring your own French press to enlarge or reduce as needed. 

How to measure your French press

  1. Height: Measure from the bottom to ½" from the pouring spout. The cozy should cover most of the height.
  2. Circumference: Run a tape measure around the outside body of the glass and holder, threading the tape through the handle. 
    NOTE: This measurement will need to be slightly adjustable depending on the thickness of your fabric and the added layer(s) in the center. Make your pattern ½"-¾" longer than the measurement taken to allow for that thickness. Final adjustment can be made with the placement of the Velcro so don't sweat a super exact fit... just leave a little extra length in cutting.
  3. Length of handle opening: With the tape laying flat against the body of the carafe holder, run the tape measure from the top inside edge of handle where it connects to the holder to the bottom edge where it connects to the holder.
  4. In the photo below, you can see how we adjusted the pattern for a slightly smaller cozy. Our new French press was ½" shorter, so we trimmed ½" from the bottom. It was approximately 3" smaller in circumference so we folded the pattern along the center line to take up 3", taping the fold in place. Finally the handle opening was 1" shorter, so we trimmed ½" from both the top and bottom corner curves.
  5. Cut a 4½ x 11" rectangle of insulating material such as batting, flannel or Insul-Bright. You can use multiple layers depending on how dense you want the insulation and how thin the fabric is that you've chosen. 
    NOTE: This is the size we cut for our finished samples. Your sizing may be slightly different. The key is to avoid any extra bulk in the seams. Cut the material as shown in the photos to fit within the main body of the cozy.

At Your Sewing Machine & Ironing Board

  1. Fold your fabric in half lengthwise, wrong sides together, and pin the pattern in place on the fold as indicated on pattern. Take the time to adjust for a fussy cut, centering the fabric's motif side-to-side and top-to-bottom.
  2. Cut out the pattern. Do not cut the fold.
  3. Open the cut fabric wrong side up. 
  4. Pin the insulation piece to one half on the wrong side. Depending on the size of your cut, the insulation should sit approximately 1" up from the bottom raw edge of the fabric and be centered side to side. 
  5. Continuing with the fabric flat, edgestitch the insulation in place around all four sides.  
  6. Fold the fabric in half lengthwise, right sides together. Align all raw edges. Pin along both short sides.
  7. Using a ⅜" seam, sew down each side and around each small curve. 
  8. Trim the seams and clip the curves
  9. Turn right side out through the open bottom and press well. 
  10. Edgestitch along both sides and across the top fold. This edgestitching is optional but recommended; it keeps the layers from shifting and provides a flatter finish.
  11. Fold in the bottom raw edges about ⅜" all along the bottom to finish the edge. Press and pin in place. 
  12. Topstitch the bottom finished edges together approximately ¼" from the bottom edge. If you used a heavy fabric, this will create a lot of layers to stitch through. You may need to futz around with the exact hem depth and seam allowance to create the best level of "bulkiness" without messing with the finished height you need. You could also handstitch closed if the thick layers are troublesome – or try the bound edge option below.

Bound edge option

  1. Cut out your pattern as above and pin the insulating layer in place.
  2. Stitch the insulation layer in place.
  3. Fold in half, wrong sides together, and pin in place.
  4. Stitch along both sides.
  5. Trim the seams and clip the curves.
  6. Turn right side out through the open bottom. Press flat. 
  7. Cut a length of binding about 1" longer than the bottom raw edge. Tuck in each raw end by about ½" to finish the ends, so the binding is now the exact length of the bottom of the cozy. 
  8. Slip the binding in place over the bottom raw edge and pin in place.
  9. Edgestitch the binding in place across both ends and along the length of the bottom.

Attach Velcro® to finish

  1. Lay the finished cozy flat on your work surface. The fold should be at the top and the finished edge at the bottom. The piece should be wrong side down. The wrong side will be the side on which you can see the stitching holding the insulation in place.
  2. Cut a length of Velcro® to fit your tab.
  3. Pin the hook side (the scratchy side) of the Velcro® to the right tab through both layers (the right hand side when looking down at the cozy laying on your work surface). 
  4. Remember, this side of the Velcro® is sewn on the right side of the cozy – the side on which you cannot see the insulation stitching.
  5. Sew around all four edges of Velcro®. 
  6. To confirm a nice snug fit, wrap the cozy around your French press with the folded edge along the top. Working through the handle, slip the tab with the stitched Velcro® under the opposite tab, adjusting until you get a tight wrap. With a pin, mark to confirm placement of the opposite piece of Velcro®.
  7. Following your pin markings, place and then stitch the loop side of Velcro® (the soft side). This side of the Velcro goes on the opposite tab on the wrong side of the cozy – the side on which you can see the insulation stitching. 

Contributors
Project Concept: Julia Chapman
Sample Creation and Instructional Outline: Debbie Guild

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