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Creative Ways to Use Tea Towels

Updated on February 29, 2016

By Candace Green

Tea towels still today add simple elegance to your kitchen's presence and décor. I remember my grandma making pretty tea towels with her sewing machine and embroidery threads.

There are many creative, simple ways to take the vintage inspired tea towel and turn it into an attractive conversation piece with little or no design talent. A tea towel creation is inexpensive, yet can become a useful, functional part of your kitchen, with the same flare you find at high dollar, downtown store fronts.

Tea Towel Apron

If you have an heirloom tea towel that belonged to Mom or Grandma; a great way to display it is by making it into an apron. Putting it on a bust is a lovely décor idea, yet a functional way to keep it looking nice or to place until each use.

Easy Apron: If you don't like to do much sewing to make a full apron, you can make an easy half apron by just sewing belt strings to the tea towel and add add embellishments to trim the top and bottom.

Also a small coordinating dishcloth would make a cute pocket for your apron. Just sew up the bottom and sides and leave the top open and you've got your pocket.

Tea Towel Angel

As you can see from pic above you can make a cute angel from using kitchen towels and a hot pad. These would make great gifts and they are inexpensive and easy to do.

You will just need one large tea/dry towel and one small dish cloth for the body. Then just one hot pad for the wings. You just fold and tie it all together with ribbon -- no cutting or sewing required.

Tea Towel Quilt

A fabulous way to preserve vintage tea towels are to make them into a quilt. They are already in squares just trim sew them together into a beautiful blanket that is sure to make a cherished keepsake.

You can also make a quilted throw from tea towels and hang it on a small quilt hanger for kitchen decor.

Sewing tea towel together making one large cloth makes a gorgeous table cloth. You'll enjoy studying each unique design on each cloth while sitting at the table. (Kids remember these kinds of things as well). Individual tea-towels make nice place mats too.

Note: Use a clear, wipe-able table cloth cover to protect your cloth where you can use it without damaging it. Make sure you get the waterproof kind.

Tea Towel Curtain

Tea towels can be sewn in to curtains creating a country charm to your kitchen. You can sew them into patchwork to make larger curtains or just hook the flat tea towel to a rod for simple, pretty window covering.

Framed Tea Towels

You can create your own wall art by framing a colorful, graphic tea towel. This is a great option if you have embroideries towels as well. For more texture to your art just leave out the glass. This is also an inexpensive gift idea that people will love.

If you collect tea towels as a hobby, framing them will show off your finds. Flea markets are a good place to find vintage tea towels.

Tea Towel Appliques

You can dress up any plain tea towel by cutting out shapes sewing onto the tea towel as an applique. This idea is good for customizing your tea towels to match your kitchen. Makes great gifts too.

Notice the cute idea of making a mini clothes line and hanging tea towels by clothes pins. It's a shabby chic way to display and add simple southern charm while your at it.

Tea Towel Skirt

Yes, you can wear your tea towels:) You can make darling skirts for women or little girls from large tea towels. They are very durable material so the skirt will wear well too. This idea might make you a little money as well, you can sell your skirts. Their story and character will attract buyers or compliments if you wear them.


Tea towels can be turned into beautiful accent pillows for your home. Just sew two together and stuff with poly-fill . Also you can make kitchen chair cushions like this just don't stuff as full and add chair tie strings to hold them to the chair.

Adding Ruffles


Simply adding ruffles to a plain tea towel adds a girly flare and decorative touch. They look nice hanging on stove handle. These would make a lovely wedding gift too. Dolling up graphic tea towels with ruffles is a nice idea as well. Adding ribbon or ric rac edging to the ruffle will make a charming detail.

I hope you have been inspired to try some of these ideas yourself. It's fun to take simple things we have and create something wonderful. Ideas are all around you, just take the time to let them in. Happy creating :)


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    • singingmommy profile image

      Candace Green 12 months ago from OKLAHOMA

      Vocalcoach That's awesome! Red ones sound so cute. Thanks for your comment and kindness.

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 13 months ago from idyllwild ca.

      After reading this hub 3 years ago I made cute kitchen curtains much like your photo (red ones.) My kitchen now has personality and charm thanks to you.

    • profile image

      Sewallday 13 months ago

      Hi any idea where I could get a pattern for your cute teatowel skirt?

    • singingmommy profile image

      Candace Green 4 years ago from OKLAHOMA

      Thanks, I love the aprons too ; ) Sure appreciate your vote up. Blessings to you:)

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 4 years ago from idyllwild ca.

      This is such a wonderful and creative way to use tea towels. The aprons are adorable! And I love adding the ruffles to towels. Gee, thanks for sharing these ideas! Up ++++ and honored to share.

    • singingmommy profile image

      Candace Green 4 years ago from OKLAHOMA

      Thanks so much for your kindness :)

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 4 years ago from southern USA

      Oh, how very creative, lovely and cute. Really love these ideas here.

      Voted up ++++ and sharing

      Blessings, Faith Reaper