Cappers Farmer Blogs > Homespun Life in the City

Making Unpaper Towels

Erin SheehanI try not to use paper towels for environmental reasons and also because I don’t like paying for them. I know they are inexpensive, but we try to be frugal as much as possible. Sometimes you do need something to wipe up with in the kitchen, so when I came across the idea of making un-paper towels on Pinterest, I decided to give them a try.

I’m a beginner sewer, but with something that I’ll just use in the kitchen I figured I could make all kinds of mistakes and no one would ever know or care. It’s not like I’m wearing the un-paper towels!

I used extra drying towels we had and my mom provided some flannel for the backing. To make eight un-paper towels you’ll need two yards of flannel and two large drying towels or two yards of absorbent cotton fabric.

First, wash and dry your fabrics first in case they shrink.

Next, cut your fabric. To cut the cloths, I used a rotary cutter and mat. The cutter goes easily through both layers and you can cut them quickly. Line up both of your fabrics together (right sides facing each other) on the mat and cut to the size you like. I made mine about 9 by 8 inches. Because they will be more absorbent than regular paper towels, I thought a bit smaller than regular paper towels would work well.

Sew the fabric together with a straight stitch about 1/4 inch away from the edge. Leave a couple of inches open on one side so you can turn your towel right-side out.

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Trim excess fabric so you won’t have bulky seams and pull the fabric through the gap you left so your towel is now right-side out.

Turn the edges under and sew up the hole you left with a straight stitch.

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That’s all there is to it! We keep ours next to the “regular” paper towel holder, which I’m hoping we can let run out and never refill again!

mary
2/1/2015 4:44:22 PM

I made a bunch of these a while back. I use them a lot, but not really in the place of paper towels - more for wash rags or wash cloths. I cut out many pieces from along the sides of a worn out flannel sheet and made them as you did. Mary from Old Dog.