Turn Vintage Dish Towels Into a Family Heirloom Quilt

4 Materials
2 Weeks
My grandma, a 1950's homemaker, embroidered a set of dish towels. She had one for each day of the week. After years of use, she gave them to my mom, who tucked them away somewhere, not really sure what to do with them.

This year, my mom and I decided to turn them into a quilt. When I first started sharing this project on my Single Girl's DIY website, I was surprised by how many people told me that they had a set of these towels, too.

So, if you have a set of vintage embroidered towels hanging around, here's how you can turn them into a quilt your whole family can enjoy. (And if you don't have any, but still want to make a quilt like this, you can embroider your own!)
Our set of daily towels was missing "Saturday." So, before we could make the quilt, I had to make one more embroidered towel.

We were lucky to find the exact pattern for our set of towels online. (You can find the link for the patterns in my website post here.)

I printed the pattern onto a piece of regular paper, and pinned it to a towel. Then I used a sewer's tracing kit and a ballpoint pen to trace over the image, and transfer the pattern to the cloth.
Once the pattern was transferred, all I needed was an embroidery hoop, my handy stitch guide, and some embroidery floss. We chose thread colors similar to those my grandma had used on the other towels.
A little out of practice, my stitching started off a little slow and wobbly. But once I got going, it really only took a few evenings of work to finish the stitching.
With "Saturday" complete (super cute, right?), we now had seven pieces for the quilt.
I stitched one more piece to add to the quilt, to even out the number of squares. Then I handed the towels off to my mom, who assembled them into a quilt.
To make the quilt top, each towel was cut to a 12-1/2" square. We used some reproduction vintage print fabrics to make the alternating colored squares for the quilt top. The finished size of each square is 12".
For the back of the quilt, we chose another reproduction fabric, with little dogs on it. (Also super cute!) With a layer of batting between the quilt top and the back, simple straight machine quilting holds all of the layers together.
So, go get those old vintage dish towels out of storage. Blow the dust off, and make yourself a lovely quilt that might just become a family heirloom.

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