August 18, 2010

A United Nations Project...

I decided to turn to a completely simple and utilitarian project in the studio yesterday. I knew this wouldn't take much time, but the results would add a nice touch in the kitchen. I decided to make the easiest of dish towels!

I purchased my yardage from Hancocks of Paducah, and...now, don't be shocked...it's toweling courtesy of The French General line. (I'm giggling.) Here's a link to the toweling you see in my photos. (If you order some for yourself, you need to order (2) units to equal (1) yard of fabric.)

When the fabric arrives, the sides have already been prefinished for you, so all you have to do is cut the toweling to the desired length (which I did with a rotary cutter), and finish the ends. The toweling is 100% cotton and comes in continuous lengths, 16" wide.
I cut my toweling into 28" lengths. Next, I turned over about 1/2" and pressed it. I used my lavender linen spray as a little something special while I was pressing. Make sure your woven trim lines match up as you press.
After you press the 1/2" over, you'll turn the fabric over one more time. I eyeballed this step, but tried to turn over the same amount as what is finished on the sides. Pin this hem down to secure it (matching up those decorative lines again) and then, using matching thread in your sewing machine, stitch about 1/8 - 1/4" inch away from the edge. By stitching that close to the edge, you'll also catch the first little fold and keep your hem from fraying after repeated washings.
My little finishing touch is a square of twill tape with a blue Swedish Dala horse. A nod to Handsome's Swedish roots. I only put one on each towel, facing toward the center and located about 1 1/2" from the edge of the towel. Let's see...The French General, a Swedish Dala horse, stitched by an American girl, born in England. My very own United Nations project!
I purchased this twill tape from one of my favorite Etsy shops, lillalotta. Anna also made my Brynwood and Acorn twill labels! Her work is impeccable, she's very artistic, and I highly recommend her products.
So, these are my finished kitchen towels. They measure approximately 16" wide and 26" long. I made four of them in this colorway. I also have the natural color with blue lines, and natural with red lines. I even have the red Dala horses to stitch onto the towels with the red lines. I think I may start to like doing the bit of hand washing I do, knowing that I'll be able to dry all the dishes with these new towels!

20 friends clicked here to leave a note for me:

Chocolates4Breakfast (TerriBoog) said...

Wonderful finish, Donna and a great little tutorial to boot! Love your little Dala horse applique'!

Whimsey Creations said...

Those are wonderful looking! I might have to go online and look at Hancocks - our local store doesn't have much of anything anymore. Thanks for the tutorial - I could use some new kitchen towels!

Beedeebabee said...

Hi Sweetie! Those towels are beauties, and that little horse is just so cute! Thanks for your great tutorial and all your extra little tips! Have a fun day, Donna! xoxo Paulette ;)

Suzann said...

I've been sitting here looking at this project with my mouth hanging open (and I look quite ridiculous). Wow. These are awesome.

downsize said...

I just love quick, beautiful projects...ones I actually complete. Think I'm off to order some fabric! Thanks Donna!

dixiesamplardesigns said...

Love those cute little towels...and what a great tutorial! Thanks!

HAPPY STITCHIN'
Terri

Createology said...

Your new kitchen towels are perfect. Every attention to detail! Happy creating...

Debra@Common Ground said...

Gorgeous towels Donna, love the twill tape horse, I'm off to check out the fabric! Hope you're having a wonderful week!
xo,
Debra

Twyla and Lindsey said...

Donna, you never cease to amaze me. These towels are the prettiest I have ever seen! I love the horse! Such style! Have a beautiful day! Twyla

Meri Wiley said...

Donna, you are so stinkin' creative! Such simple ideas, but you make them so much more special.

Love ya'
Meri

Grandma Yellow Hair said...

Donna what can I say you are just too darn smart. lol
Seriously these towels are lovely. I thought of you often yesterday and of course laughed when I thought of Ms. Smarty Britches trying to tell you what to do. She is probably the only lady in this world that does not know of your talents.
In my next life I want to be a Donna
Love ya honey
Maggie
PS
You could probably tell me what site to go on to find 50's material for my kitchen. When Dan tweaked the tiny kitchen he suggested a 50's theme

mya said...

Kitchen towels finally become stylish. Love the tailored lines.

Karen said...

I love the towels - they are wonderful! Like the little horse too :)

Rebecca said...

The towels are PERFECT, Donna! You have such an eye for getting things right! Love the no-fuss tailored look and feel!

Blessings to you my talented friend~

xoRebecca

Brenda@Cozy Little House said...

Ooh, so pretty! When I was quilting back in the nineties, my dream was to shop in Paducah.
Brenda

Ceekay- Thinkin of Home said...

Oh I love them! Remind me of the towels my mom used to use...you did a great job and the little label is just too cute!!

DeeDee said...

Well being of swedish decent myself I must say...I love them..the little dala horse is so cute....great project and great tutorial too...will be used with pride I am sure...

enjoy your week..

Michelle May said...

United Nations...giggle, giggle, snort! You crack me up!
These are fabulous! Just fabulous!
xx, shell and sugie

Anne - Fiona and Twig said...

These are prettttttty!

Ya know, I fully expect to walk into Target one day and see a line of your linens for sale! Martha ain't got NUTHIN' on you!

Hugs and love,
Anne

Tracy Suzanne said...

I'm totally with Anne above on this one. If you don't have a line it's because you don't want to and absolutely not because you can't. Love your towels.

Hugs...Tracy :)

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