I just spent an afternoon making a pair of potholders. They are good potholders. Well-made, sturdy, functional. I took my time with them. I carefully chose favourite fabrics from my scraps and put a double layer of cotton batting inside them. I used a stitch-and-flip method that let me construct both sides at the same time. I bound them neatly.
They will be given as a gift to a young couple who are getting married this summer.
I am sure these potholders will not match anything in the bride’s kitchen. I did not ask what colours she might like or what style of decorating she is using. The two potholders are not the same colours -- they are not even the same colours on both sides!
Since they don’t match the bride’s kitchen – or worse – look like they were SUPPOSED to match but failed! – she isn’t going to be too concerned about them. She won’t hang them on the wall to keep them looking nice. When she moves from this home to her next one she won’t find that they are no longer right and can no longer be hung on the wall so they have to be stuffed into a drawer somewhere. Until yet another move comes along and she wants to get rid of them in a yard sale but is afraid to because the person who made them (she will have long since forgotten who it is) might come along and see them in the sale and be offended.
No, these potholders are so obviously not made to coordinate with her décor. So I hope she will hang them on a hook near the stove and use them. They will help her take trays of cookies and pans of roasted vegetables out of her oven. They will get splattered with bacon fat and the edges will be stained with pasta sauce and she will throw them in the laundry. One day she will look at these potholders and realize that there are holes burnt in them, and stains that will no longer come out and she will decide that they are totally gross and she will drop them into the trash. That is good -- they will have served their purpose and she won’t have to move them from place to place.
Today as I sat happily stitching the squares and strips together to make these potholders I worked in my love and prayers for Kirsten and John. The potholders will wear out, but even when the potholders are long gone, the prayers will remain, and that is far more important.