Thursday, January 9, 2014

Nostalgic Recipe Towels

My grandmother, Dede, was a great homemaker in all the wonderful senses of the word. 

She was a stylish, smart and talented woman.  She could sew, knit, crochet, and paint. She made a home filled with love and laughter and she raised two amazing daughters who happened to become my mother and aunt who became amazing homemakers in their own rights.  
Dede and PopPop traveled all over to visit with my
travelin' Navy family.
I especially love these photos from Hawaii in the 60's
That's me on the bottom right and my sister in my
PopPop's arms.
She passed away not too long ago.  Although we all miss her very much, I was blessed to have her in my life for a long time. 

DeDe's recipes are still the ones I turn to when I really need some comfort food.  So when I saw this pin on pinterest, I knew it was going to be my mother's Christmas gift. Linen-Cotton kitchen towels printed with copies of Dede's recipes in her own handwriting!

I followed the directions for formatting the photos/scans of the recipe cards, made a collage in Picasa and then sent it off to Spoonflower to have it made into fabric.  

I won't go into too much detail on the process because the links above do a pretty good job, but will give a few tips that I found helpful...

1.  Do not try to photograph the recipes.  Scan them.  In my case, the recipe was on two sides of the card, so I photocopied both sides and then cut and taped the pieces together and then scanned.

2.  The collage part is much easier if each recipe is the same size - trust me.

3. Retouching some of the marks and "seams" and changing the color to the Sepia setting (in iPhoto for me) made for a much cleaner print for the fabric 

4.  I downloaded and used Picasa and it worked fine with the directions they gave.  I had to fool around a bit with resizing to get most of the recipe to fit, but finally got it just so.

5. Don't miss the final tip that tells you to resize to 36 x 54 and 150dpi resolution.

6.  The fabric arrived in less than 2 weeks and was perfect! 

I got excited and cut apart the panels before I took a picture!  Oops!

I got so excited that I cut right into one of the panels...AAAARGGH!

See the little zigzag mend there----->
I'm calling it "vintage rustic"...hmmm.

6.  Once you have the panels cut apart, use your iron to turn under the colored border and turn it to the back and stitch it down.  I used blue thread in the needle and cream thread in the bobbin.  I wanted the recipe to be the star - not the stitching.

7.  The borders will be slightly different sizes  unless you cut the outer edges to match the shared inside edges.  I didn't bother and it looked fine.  

8.  Here is the finished gift!  

The best thing is that the fabric stays on file at Spoonflower so if you want to make more...just a few clicks and about $30 and you can have 4 more towel to make!

I couldn't wait to see my mother open the gift!  She was so surprised to see Dede's handwriting on the towels! 

It took a little piddidlin' to get the computer part right, but was so worth it in the end.  I'm going to look for some recipes from my other Grandmother next!  

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