My Life in Knots

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Crochet Towel Topper

The crochet towel topper I think I have seen my whole life. People use to give these to my mom as gifts and we always had one hanging in the kitchen, sometimes multiples hanging around.
When I had kids I started making these for several reasons.
1. I could hang them and they didn't end up on the floor each use
2. Little kids couldn't pull them off like a towel just draped over something
3. no one would bother unbuttoning it to wipe down a mess with, they are far to lazy to handle that unbuttoning
4. I had an idiot, now ex, who would use nice towels to say wipe up drippings from slicing meat then leave it on the towel and not tell anyone raw meat was wiped with this. He too was too lazy to go through the unbuttoning step so these were always pretty safe to usee to wipe damp hands on after dishes or washing.
But, I have found many people who have crocheted, even longer then I, have no idea how to make these. Many people do though so this is specifically for those people wanting to know about the wonders of the crochet towel topper.

Step 1: Start with a basic hand towel, any will do. You can do terry cloth, the butcher cloth ones, doesn't matter.

Step 2: Fold the towel exactly in half length wise and cut. I don't measure, this is crocheting not rocket science here, just fold in half, shove scissors in the fold and cut away.

Step 3: Now you have 2 towels and many choices to make.
Here you can do many different things, you can skip to step 5 if you chose to not treat the raw edge of the towel. I have done this, it looks fine but does tend to frey on the outside corners.
You can use frey check, a product found in sewing supply stores, to stop the ends from fraying then skip to step 5 and continue.
Or this is what I do

Step4: I pull out the sewing machine (or you can hem by hand) and I fold over the raw edge twice and sew a straight line to prevent freying.

this gives my towel a nice look to it and will also make a channel I can hide knots in in step 5

Step 5: Now I take a length of yarn about 1.5 times the width of my towel. I tie a knot on one end and shove it in the channel I created on the back starting in the top right hand corner. You can work with this and find the best way that works for you. I then make large stitches down the length of the towel. There is no exact science here to how many.
If you are using a particular pattern stitch then make sure you have enough stitches to support that pattern. Treat these stitches like you would chains. When you reach the end just do some loops on the back in the channel and end off like you would if hemming a piece of sewing.

I ended up with 37, pretty evenly spaced stitches across and planned to just use a DC through out so I wasn't concered with the amount of stitches. I find between 30-40 works good for me.

Step 6: Take your yarn and attach to top right hand corner of your towel by making a slip not and placing on hook, then insert in 1st stitch and make a sc. Continue sc across into the stitches until you have the same number of sc's as you had stitches. I had 37 sc here. You can also see in this picture the itty bitty ball of yarn I was using...yeppers this is a stash pattern, you can use up those little bits, I find 1-2 oz is all I need for this basic topper.

Step 7: Now I decided on a dc throughout. Why? Well dc is faster then sc and when I finish and attach my button the space between 2 dc's will actually act like a button hole without having to make a button hole. You'll just shove your button inbetween 2 stitches, so I usually try to make the narrowest part of my topper an even amount of stitches like 4 across, then I can slip the button between the 2 centered dc's and it seems balanced to reality only the analy retentive will really notice you're one space away if you end up with say 5 dc's across on the narrowest part.

Here is the completed topper. I chained 2, turned and dc in each stitch across. I had about an ounce of yarn so couldn't make a large topper on this towel so on the next few rows I decreased by 2-3 stitches on each end as I worked up. This narrowed my piece pretty rapidly. I ended up with 6 rows to get to 5 dc across. I decreased once more and had 4 dc across. I then worked 4 rows in dc upto make a length I liked. You can make yours longer or shorter, just play with it, this isn't hard.
You can then start on one corner and sc around the edge to finish off the piece if you like. I was making this quick and didn't bother, with rapid decreases the towel will fold in on itself like in the last picture above and you really don't end up seeing the edges, oh and I only had 6 inches of yarn left so couldn't do a sc around the edge.
Now add a button and hang, that simple!



At Sunday, September 14, 2008 12:40:00 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Awesome, easy and pretty. Thank You for your tutorial. I am teaching my daughter and daughter- in-law to crochet so they are having fun with the towels.

At Tuesday, September 16, 2008 12:04:00 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey! A SINCERE thanks for your straight forward tutorial. I needed this no nonsence approach! Your comment, "its crochet, not rocket science", got me grinning and determined to try this one. You are right, you DO see these towel toppers in every home and no one seems to know how to make them (except, of course, those whose crochet IS rocket science!)

At Wednesday, October 07, 2009 4:51:00 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for the "not rocket science" approach to making these towels. Now I have the confidence to make my own.

At Friday, October 23, 2009 4:36:00 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have a question! Do you HAVE to cut the towel in half or can you just FOLD it instead? Thanks!

At Sunday, October 25, 2009 7:56:00 PM , Blogger Buggy said...

You can do either cut or leave it whole and fold in half. I prefer to cut it then I get 2 towels for the price of 1

At Sunday, November 22, 2009 2:04:00 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you soooo much for this tutorial.... I'm trying, for the first time, to make one of these towel toppers, and have an awful time with patterns....this was so helpful!!!!

At Thursday, December 03, 2009 3:23:00 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just started making these towel toppers and I thank you so much for your input. I was being totally anal about making sure every stitch was 'just so'. No need to do that. Now I won't be so nervous when I attempt another one.


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