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Fabric Bowl Covers

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Dress up your dishes for picnics and potlucks with an embroidered bowl cover! Use colorful fabrics and designs to add a tasty look; ripstop nylon on the inside makes them so-easy to clean.


  • Bowl; the one used in this example has a 10" diameter at the top
  • 2 round objects (bowl, lid) for tracing circles 2" smaller than the bowl and 2" larger than the bowl
  • 1/4 yard denim (for embroidered section)
  • 1/2 yard good-quality print cotton fabric
  • 1/2 yard rip stop nylon
  • Medium-weight (2.5 ounce) cutaway stabilizer
  • Air-erase pen for marking
  • 1/4" wide braided elastic and safety pin
  • Double-sided fusible web
  • Needle and thread for some hand sewing

    Bowl covers are machine-washable; air or line dry rather than use a machine dryer.

Designs Used

Begin by measuring the diameter of the bowl. This one measures 10".

Find another bowl or plate that is 2" smaller, and trace that circle onto a piece of denim. This is where the design will be embroidered.

A template, or printout of a design, is an excellent tool to help with placement. Print a template of the design from your embroidery software. Place the template so the center is in the center of the circle. Mark the center point, as well as the vertical and horizontal axis lines.

Hoop the denim with a piece of cutaway stabilizer, lining up the marks on the denim with the marks on the hoop.

Attach the hoop to the machine and move the hoop so the needle is right over the center point. Embroider the design. I use a size 11 or 75/11 embroidery or sharp sewing needle when embroidering on denim.

After embroidering, trim the excess stabilizer away from the back.

Cut out the circle shape. This is the embroidered piece for the bowl cover.

The next step is to make the rest of the cover. Take a piece of good-quality quilter's cotton and lay it wrong side up.

Put the larger bowl on top, and trace around it.

Measure out 2" and draw a larger circle. Or, if you have a bowl or plate that is 2" larger, use that to trace. That extra 2" is what will go down the sides of the bowl.

Cut out the larger circle. 

Next, add the embroidered piece to the center. Cut a piece of double-sided fusible web the same size as the embroidered piece.

Peel back the paper and put the fusible web on the back of the embroidered piece.

Lay that in the center of the quilter's cotton.

Use an iron to activate the fusible web.

Use a decorative stitch to sew the embroidered piece to the quilter's cotton.

The next step is to add the rip stop nylon. Place the cover on top of the rip stop nylon, wrong side up.

Pin in place, and cut out the circle shape.

Sew a 1/4" seam along the outer edge, leaving 2" along the bottom edge open for turning.

Turn the cover right side out and press the seam.

Turn the fabric of the opening in 1/4" and press.

Sew a 1/2" seam all along the outer edge of the fabric. This makes the pocket for the elastic.

Thread the elastic through the pocket, gathering the fabric as you go. The cover will start to take on the bowl shape as you do this.

Remove the pin and cut the elastic. Sew the two ends of the elastic together.

Tuck the elastic between the folds of the opening, then handsew it closed.

Slip it over the bowl.

These fabric bowl covers are a fabulous way to cover dishes for picnics and parties! Plus, they're machine-washable so you can use them again and again.