I know we are getting late into summer and that for some of you the school year starts again soon. Earlier this summer, before we left on our cross-country adventure, I wanted to add a little summer touch to my home decor. I decided to make these cute flour sack towels. I think you could make these towels to add a touch of any season or holiday in your home. It all depends on the fabric you pick. They would also make a great teacher gift. Maybe help start the year off on a cute note with your child's teacher.
Now I'm going to have you start with a super challenging task. You will need to go to the fabric store. ::Gasp:: This could be fun! I finally decided to splurge on some cute fabric from my local quilting store. Their fabrics are so cute and so nice, but I can't usually justify spending double what I could get fabric for at JoAnn's or Hobby Lobby. This project needed such a small amount of fabric, I thought it was a perfect time to buy some cute and more expensive fabric. You can also raid your fabric stash…but an excuse for new fabric is always a plus, right?
Are you ready to make your own flour sack towel? Let's do this!
- Flour sack towels – I got mine at Cost Plus World Market. They are huge. Not sure I recommend them as I kind of wish I had used a smaller towel.
- 1/4 yard (or less) of each fabric to add to your towel
- Pom pom fringe (optional)
- Sewing Machine
Start by cutting out your three fabrics for your stripes. You will want to measure the width of your towel and add 1/2″ – 1″ for the length of your cuts. You may want the extra 1″ if you want to have a nice neat fold over the edge of your towel with these fabrics. I have a picture of that later in the post so you can see what I mean.
I cut my stripes at 1.5″ wide and 3″ wide. For the ruffle stripe, I doubled the length and cut it at 2″ wide. I was using 1/4″ seams, so all my finished sizes were 1/2″ less than the cuts I just described.
I like to get all of the tedious work out-of-the-way at the beginning. I usually have more patience at the beginning of a project, so it works for me. You can work one stripe at a time or you can do all the prep work and then put it all together like I did.
Using a hot iron, iron the 1/4″ hem into the top and bottom of all of your stripes. Iron your 1/4″ hem at the ends as well. If you are doing a neat fold over the edge of your towel, iron your 1/4″ hem at the end then fold it over again and iron to create a double fold of 1/4″.
Sew the hems on the top and bottom of the stripe that will become your ruffle.
Sew the pom-pom trim to the bottom edge of that stripe. Don't worry about sewing the top of that stripe or the fattest stripe.
Set your machine to its longest stitch.
Sew straight down the middle of the stripe that you want to be the ruffle. Do not back-stitch.
Gently use the threads at each end of this stripe to pull it into a ruffle.
Whew! Now we are done with all the prep work. It really wasn't anything too hard. Just some details to attend to.
Now comes the fun part! Let's put the towel together.
Measure where you want your bottom stripe to begin. I put mine at 3 1/4″. Use your measuring tape to line this stripe up at precisely this point all along. Pinning in place as you go.
Top stitch in place using a 1/8″ hem. By using the 1/8″ hem you will be getting the fabric that you ironed at 1/4″ and save yourself the time of hemming. It will also look better to see only the top stitching and not a hem and top stitching.
Because you lined up the bottom row so well, you won't need to measure for this row. Just carefully line and pin-up the row with the pom-pom trim.
Top stitch at 1/8″
Finally, follow the same procedure for your ruffle row.
I had originally planned to have my ruffle at the bottom, but didn't realize I had placed it in the wrong place until it was too late. Oh well, it still looks cute.
If you want polished edges for your fabric and towel, carefully fold the fabric around to the backside of the towel. make sure when you are topstitching that you secure these ends in place.
Love the fun and the colors of this towel!
You can see how you could add towels that match your decor or match the holiday/season very easily this way.
I think these towels are so stinking cute. I have a feeling I will be making some for fall, Christmas, etc., etc. Such an inexpensive way to add a little something for the season.
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