DIY Embroidered Tea Towels With a Stitched Hem

I recently happened upon a package of flour cloth towels. The weave of flour cloth is perfect for embroidery , and since the package I found was plain, I knew some hand embroidery would be perfect to enhance the stark white of the towels. I picked an embroidery patterned I loved and then decided on a chevron blanket stitch along the hem.

Follow along with these steps to create your very own embroidered tea towel, complete with a pretty stitched hem!


Project notes:


Even though I bought my towels, you could just as easily sew your own tea towels or flour sack towels, and they would work just as well for this project!

I had bookmarked this fun mushroom embroidery pattern that is available for instant download over in the Bluprint pattern shop and thought it would be a good accent for the flour cloth. However, feel free to use whatever embroidery pattern you'd like!

Get the embroidered mushroom pattern here.

Supplies needed:

-   Tea towel (either manufactured or you can make your own)

-    Embroidery supplies (hoop, floss, needles, & scissors)

-    Mushroom embroidery pattern

-    Water soluble pen

Step one:

Transfer your embroidery pattern to the fabric with a water-soluble pen. I like to use a light box to transfer my embroidery pattern to fabric.

Step two:

Place the fabric in an embroidery hoop. Flour cloth has an open weave, so you don’t want to pull the fabric too taut into the hoop, or it will leave your pattern sort of warped once you remove the hoop.

Step three:

Stitch your pattern. As I mentioned before, flour cloth has an open weave, so it’s important not to pull the fabric or the floss too taut or it will warp the pattern once finished. I used a satin stitch to fill the mushroom cap and its dots, in addition to the upper part of the mushroom stem. Then used a long and short stitch to fill the rest of the mushroom stem.

Step four:

The flour cloth towels I purchased already came hemmed from the manufacturer, and needed to be pressed. This hem will be my stitch guide, as I create the chevron blanket stitch along the hem.

If you decide to sew your own tea towels, your hem measurement can dictate the size of your blanket stitch.

Step five:

To create the chevron blanket stitch on the hem of the tea towel, you’ll begin as you would a basic blanket stitch. I turned the towel upside down and worked from right to left.

Your needle and floss will begin by going through from the front of the fabric to the back. As you pull the needle and floss through, you want the needle to pass over your floss. When you pull it taut, you will see a loop form around the floss that is coming over the fold of your hem.

You will repeat this twice, in order to get the three-strand V of the chevron stitch. Just as with the first stitch, you will take the needle and floss through the front of the fabric, going through the same hole as the first, in order to create the point of the V. As you work these stitches, space them out at the fold of the hem.

Then go back through the hole again to create the third prong of the V. Once this is complete, space your stitch out and begin another V.

I only did the top and bottom of the tea towel, but you can work it around the entire towel if you like.

Step six:

In order to knot the tails of my floss ends, I looped them through the backside of the hem. Make sure not to grab fabric from the front of the hem. And I caught the floss under the loop. Then ran it through the hem of the towel again, and trimmed the excess.

Step seven:

Once all the stitching is complete, I spritz a bit of water on the embroidery to remove the water-soluble pen marks. Allow to dry and the towel is complete!

Hang in the kitchen and enjoy!

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Discover all the skills you need to complete your favorite hand embroidery projects with the online Bluprint class, Design It, Stitch It: Hand Embroidery , taught by New York sewing instructor  Jessica Marquez !


What's your favorite decorative stitch to add along hemlines?

September 11, 2014
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DIY Embroidered Tea Towels With a Stitched Hem