Wednesday, June 1, 2011

BBQ Worthy Hanging Towels

A few weeks ago, some friends came over for a BBQ. My husband and a guy friend were in charge of the fire. While my husband went into the house for something, the guy friend leaned in and asked for a towel, and my husband grabbed the first one he saw and threw it to him.

Then I walked by the window and saw him mopping the front of the greasy BBQ with my dainty white hanging kitchen towel made with out-of-print Amy Butler fabric. I kept calm and didn’t say anything…it wasn’t til later when we were cleaning up did my dear husband apologize without my prompting. “I’m so sorry honey, I don’t know what I was thinking!” he said, as he rushed to soak the towel. The towel is fine by the way, except for the covered button that melted off!

Later he grunted at me: “Yeah, I need some manly towels. No girly dainty white towels for my BBQ!”

So I set off to make him two BBQ-worthy hanging towels. I knew I wanted to put a steak on one, but wasn’t sure about the other. So I asked the experts: my girls.

  • Mama: What is Dada’s favorite BBQ food? How about a chicken leg?
  • Girls: No! Dada likes ketchup!
  • Mama: Ketchup? But this is for the BBQ…how about a hamburger?
  • Girls: No! Ketchup!
  • Mama: Hot Dog?
  • Girls: NO! KET-CHUP!

The experts have spoken so ketchup it is. For that I found an image by searching for “ketchup clipart” and traced that onto a piece of paper. For the steak, I was inspired by one of my girls’ kitchen play toys.


I cut out the steak and ketchup bottle into individual pieces to make the applique. I didn’t photograph the steak because I was too excited and forgot! But for that, I cut out the whole thing in one red piece, and layered the white “fat” (eew!) and the black bone on top. For the ketchup bottle, I cut out the top and neck of the bottle, the red part, the label and the tomato separately (the tomato is just a circle at this point…will add the green leaves later). Then following the directions, I cut out the pieces with Steam-A-Seam2 adhered to it.


I fused the pieces onto the towel, layering the label and tomato over the red piece.


I put a piece of tear-away stabilizer on the back and sewed a small, tight zig-zag stitch around the outline of the bottle.


Then I just used some straight stitches going back and forth to make the leaves. Practice on a scrap first.

BBQTowels8 BBQTowels10

Remove the stabilizer from the back.


All done with the appliques! Okay they’re not totally manly. I mean, the word “applique” is so girly in itself, it can’t be helped.


I wanted to keep the hanging part of the towels simple and used super manly ticking fabric instead with a muscular Velcro closure (grunt, flex biceps). I found this strap in my scrap pile…it was the excess length of the hanging strap from my Christmas wreath. I made the other one in another color. Start out with a 3-inch wide strip, fold it in half lengthwise and press, then fold the sides in to meet in the middle, then fold again down the middle.

Fold over one raw edge at the end and sew to the top middle edge of the towel, about 3/4 inch or so down.


Then sew one piece of Velcro to that end.


On the other end, fold over the raw edge and place the other Velcro on top and sew it down. Super easy and simple.


And you’re done.



For more gifts for guys, click the We Love Dada Week button below:



Linking: Petite Hermine :: Tip Junkie :: Sugar Bee-Crafts :: Rook No. 17 :: Tea Rose Home :: The Trendy Treehouse :: Sew Woodsy :: Somewhat Simple :: Momnivoire's Dilemma :: What Allie’s Making Now :: The Frugal Girls :: Tidy Mom :: WhipperBerry :: Creation Corner :: Craft Envy :: Along for the Ride :: Tatertots and Jello :: Lolly Jane Boutique :: Be Different...Act Normal :: Flamingo Toes :: Hazel and Honeysuckle :: Homemaker on a Dime :: Sassy Sites



  1. Hah those are awesome! Not so much the melted button from your dishtowels, but the BBQ ones are terrific! My kids have their own opinions too. They would probably choose kethchup as well even though hubby doesn't really eat it. It's their fave! :D

  2. Those are great! And I love that your husband apologized without promting. HOw funny!

  3. WoW! No use of the cricut!>!??!? All by hand cutting out those pieces! You rock!!! I found you via What Allie's Making Now link party. I'd love for you to link this up at Sew Woodsy

  4. this is great... would it be cheating if i make myself a set for my kitchen too?! ;) have a great weekend!

  5. These are awesome! My husband would love it if I made him some

  6. Very cute! Condolences on the lost covered button...
    Thanks for linking up to Making It With Allie! I can't wait to see what you have for next week!

  7. Love the towels. You did a super job with the applique.

  8. Steph, I absolutely love those "manly" towels! Your custom made appliques are wonderful -- in a blogosphere so full of die-cut, stenciled, and shortcut machines, I really admire crafters, like yourself, who take the time to use more artisinal methods. You can see the time and love invested in the final piece!

    Thank you so much for always bringing such quality and craftsmanship to "A Little Birdie Told Me..."


  9. Cute! Sorta have a vintage vibe to it. My sister would love these! She is slightly obessed with ketchup, lol!

  10. Ohh my gosh, Steph! You could make anything with your sewing machine, huh?! I wish I learned sewing from my mom who was good at sewing as well. You rocked, twin mama! --YY

  11. Ha! What a good idea! So glad your lovely white amy butler towel survived!!

    I would love if you came over and linked this project to my weekly Round Tuit party at:
    Have a great week!
    Jill @ Creating my way to Success

  12. Love the hanging towel for dad. My hubby needs this.

    Would love if you would link up with us at Creative Creation Tuesday. We would love others to see your project too. Can be found here at Nothing But Country.

    Happy Creating! Thanks for sharing your great project.

  13. Oh, these are great. thanks for the idea. I'm a new follower. Hope to see you at
    P.S. I have a link party every Monday. I would love for you to stop by and link up your project.

  14. Great idea for a practical gift that can be enjoyed for a long time!

    Warmly, Michelle

  15. How cute and practical! Is it ok to pin this to Pinterest?

  16. What a wonderful idea for a Father's Day gift. I'm pinning this to remember for next year. Thanks so much for sharing with this week's Throwback Thursday party.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...