I'm feeling like such the 1950s housewife these days. Home with the kids, shuttling to school and classes, keeping house, cooking (occasionally anyway) and sprucing up the kitchen with some new dish towels! I've wanted to do this rick rack thing since I bought some very similar to this in Christmas colors from Crate & Barrel a few years ago. Such a simple, graphic way to add a bit of color. I think it looks modern and vintage and a little kitsch all at the same time. And it's an easy way to give a nod to Valentine's Day without adding too much clutter. I need to save room for Valentine drawings made by my two little artists: Audrey and Scarlett.
This project is pretty self-evident (to be honest, the most difficult part was finding plain white dish towels that weren't terry) but I created a little tutorial anyway. So if you'd like to see the step-by-step on making your own rick rack dish towels click to read more.
- Two white kitchen towels
- Four different lengths of rick rack, 1-1 1/2 yard each depending on the width of your towels
The first step towards a set of rick rack dish towels is making your selection of rick rack of course! I chose a few shades of pink and a true red in various widths. A lot of different combinations would be fun here. there are no rules. I think what ever looks good to your eye works. I would like to try some in orange and aqua for instance.
You'll need 1 yard to 1 1/2 yards of each of the four colors of rick rack you chose to complete two towels. My towels are on the smallish side so 1 yard was just enough. You could measure twice and then cut and sew, but I preferred to skip the measuring part and instead sew, and then cut to fit. Worked just fine since I started with enough length.
To finish the end of the rick rack, and stop fraying, make a little zigzag stitch (or you could of course serge--I still have my serger sitting in a box!) a bit back from the end and then trim the rick rack close to the stitching. I find if I try to sew right on the edge it's a big mess.
Now fold back the rick rack on itself. It's nice if the ridges (ricks?) line up...
and pin on the wrong side of the dish towel where you will start sewing your first line of rick rack.
I suggest working from the bottom up to make it easier to keep everything straight. You could measure and mark on the towel but I did this by eye. I placed the first row of rick rack about one inch from the bottom of the towel and stitched down the middle in a white thread.
At the end I reverse stitched, cut the thread,...
...trimmed the rick rack leaving about 1 inch out from the towel...
...then zigzag finished this end, and tucked it under towards the back side of the towel. I think stitched this in place.
Continue in the same manner with your other lines of rick rack. I spaced my stitching lines about one inch apart and paid attention to the "negative space" between the rows of rick rack to keep them straight.
That's it. Pretty quick!
These are fun for other holidays too, or in your favorite color combinations.