Hi friends, I've wanted to make embroidered tea towels for a long time. They're attractive and useful, as well as fairly quick and easy to make, and perfect candidates for that holiday saviour, the handmade gift stash. Wrap a gift-stash embroidered tea towel around a wine-stash bottle of bubbly, and you've got a great last-minute gift.
I spent a leisurely few hours making these, stopping often for tea-and-scone breaks. There is something pretty fantastic about a morning with tea, fresh baked treats, listening to CBC and hand stitching. Here's what you'll need:
- Tea towelling (available in several colours, by the metre, at Fabricland; you could also use plain tea towels)
- Embroidery floss, needle and hoop
- Embroidery tracing paper
- Other tools and notions: pencil, pen, scissors, iron
A bit of advice: pre-wash and -dry your tea towelling before you cut it into lengths. I didn't, and had to deal with pieces that shrunk dramatically (as 100% cotton tends to do) in the dryer. If necessary, trim the ends:
Then hem up your towels. I did a standard turn-it-twice 1/4–inch hem. Easy.
Since the red-and-white tea towelling I was using was so straightforward, I went for straightforward lettering, and traced my patterns onto sheets of paper.
Layer your pattern on top of a sheet of tracing paper, on top of the tea towel, and trace the letters with a ballpoint pen.
(Can you tell I'm on my way to a housewarming party?) Remove the pattern and tracing paper, and stretch your fabric into an embroidery hoop.
For something as simple as these letters, backstitch is perfect – with the bonus that it's neat front and back. Stitch away...
About an hour later, ta da!
(I love looking at the back of stitching projects – sometimes more than the front.)
I'm going to use this to wrap a larger housewarming gift (almost like a Japanese
cloth). I think that the "celebrate" tea towel will be just the thing for a holiday dinner, and the "merry and bright" tea towel will likely get wrapped around a loaf of bread (or maybe fruitcake?) for my favourite neighbours. Links: