When it comes to decorating my house I have one simple rule: it must function and it must look good. It’s one rule because there’s no choosing between them – it must be both. We live in an old mill house (1919 to be exact), and our part of the house is just over 600sf. When you have limited space you cannot afford to have things that just look pretty and take up space, and (call me superficial but) likewise you can’t have ugly things because they’ll likely be on display… all the time.
Which is what gets me about tea towels.
I go to shops such as Anthroplogie and drool over their beautiful tea towels, only to come home and find that that’s all they do: look beautiful. They spread lint all over my dishes and then leave them half wet. It drives me insane. Not only are they costly, but they’re rubbish! And that my friends, is why I decided to take matters into my own hands.
After doing a bit of research I found that linen is one of the most absorbent fabrics, most GOOD tea towels are a linen/cotton blend. I wanted to make sure these worked, so I tried both the 100% linen and the linen/cotton blend and the pure linen won by far! My sister and I did a test run last week and there was no lint and no water. So they function. And to make them pretty, well, if you know me, you know that I live for stripes and polka dots so it was a no brainer as to what the pattern was going to be.
I loved hand painting, sewing and playing with the patterns, thinking about what they would look like hanging on the oven handle or kitchen island, and I even added a little ribbon on the back so they can be hung too.
I haven’t been this excited about a project since, well, I can’t remember. But bottom line is that these have been an absolute joy to work on and I hope that you will enjoy using them too. You can now buy them in my very own shop, or you live in Bend, they’ll be on sale at Armature Bend, and at Craft-O on December 13th and 14th at the Old Iron Works Arts District.
I’d like to thank my wonderful husband who drove me around Portland looking for supplies and my incredible studio mates (Kelly, Karen & Gabe, Leah and Wallis) at Armature who have all shared in my excitement and really encouraged me to make these!