I found this description of tea towels on the Internet: A tea towel is a cloth for drying dishes and is also known as a dish towel. It is very handy and helps to give a neat and clean look to the kitchen. Few tea towels are too lovely to be hidden away. The attractive patterned linen or cotton tea towels are appealing to eyes and also have a high utility. I have had an obsession with linens since I was first married and my mother gave me a few doilies, tea towels, and tablecloths in setting up my first home. I began looking for them when garage sailing or shopping at the thrift stores. They were very inexpensive and added so much to decorating! I made pillows, seat covers, and lampshades with them. And, yes, even used a few to dry the dishes!! ;-) But my favorite way to display my collection is using them as window treatments...
These are pictures of our bay window in the kitchen/dining room. Steve built a shelf over the window so I could display my other obsession (wink).
For a window treatment I used all the special tea towels I've collected, or were given to me by family and friends. I cheated just a little, and used an apron in the very middle of the window!
There is something so sweet and charming about these lovely, embroidered tea towels that makes me smile when I look at them. I love the idea how homemakers years ago took the time to embroider a simple flour sack to beautify their kitchen--or the 'guest towels' that were used in the bathroom...My 90 year old aunt has always had a neatly displayed stack of linen guest towels in her bathroom-- and that's what you used to dry your hands! She said she loves to iron and doesn't think of it as extra work.
These past couple of days I've been cleaning out the guest room closet, which houses all (most) of my linens. I have taken EVERYTHING out and am neatly folding them and organizing them according to function (tablecloths, napkins, doilies, etc). It was a joy just handling them and remembering where I was in life when I acquired it. When I came across a doily given to me by a close friend of my mom's, and I hadn't talked to in months, I just stopped right then and called her to catch up. Today I'm going to write a thank you note to another friend's mom, who's given me some beautiful linens she doesn't use any more, and I just want her to know how much I really appreciate her thinking of me...I've also set aside a stack of linens for my sweet daughter-in-love, Kristen--who loves tea towels and tablecloths as much as I do!!
Well, got lots to do today!! Thank you notes to write and a closet to finish organizing!!
Have a wonderful day!