Create a Sustainable and Customisable Alternative: Reusable Paper Towels

Create a Sustainable and Customisable Alternative: Reusable Paper Towels

Reusable paper towels may sound like an oxymoron, but they are an innovative and eco-friendly solution to the wastefulness of traditional paper towels. These towels are versatile, customisable, and, most importantly, toxin-free. In this article, we will take you through the step-by-step process of making your own reusable paper towels and why it’s a great idea to switch from single-use paper towels.

Why consider making reusable paper towels?

First, they are environmentally friendly. Every year, billions of paper towels are used and thrown away, having a negative effect on the environment. By using reusable paper towels, you can reduce your ecological impact and help conserve our earth.

Second, they are cheaper, especially when we are using material that is already available. I use these swatches with my patterns on them from Spoonflower, but if you don’t create patterns, these are great scrap-busting projects. You can just use some cotton for the front, and towelling or an old handtowel or towelling you no longer need for the back as long as it is absorbent.

Third, they are multi-functional. Reusable paper towels can be used for a variety of cleaning tasks, such as wiping counters, cleaning spills, and dusting. I find they are much more absorbent than paper towels when wiping spills or cleaning surfaces.

Fourth, they are customisable. By making your own reusable paper towels, you can choose the fabric and design that best suits your needs and style. So, why not create your paper towels to match your kitchen décor?

Finally, and probably most importantly they are toxin free. Did you know Paper towels, especially those bleached or treated with chemicals, can contain toxins that may be harmful to our health and our environment? For example, some paper towels contain dioxins, which are highly toxic chemicals that can cause cancer and other health problems. Also, paper towels that are treated with chlorine or other chemicals can release harmful substances like formaldehyde into the air when we use them. These toxins can contribute to air pollution in our homes, and may make respiratory problems worse. So affecting those with asthma, allergies or lung issues. By making and using reusable paper towels, you can avoid exposure to these harmful toxins and reduce your impact on the environment. Let’s do this.

Step-by-Step Guide to Making Reusable Paper Towels

Step 1: Gather Your Materials

The first thing you’ll need to do is get your materials together. You’ll need some fabric of your choice, however, you will need something absorbent like cotton or linen. I also use some towelling on the back. You’ll also need a pair of scissors, a ruler, a sewing machine or needle and thread. Also a sewing planner is helpful to keep track of projects, I have made one for you to download at the end of this blog.

Step 2: Cut Your Fabric

Now that you have all of your materials, it’s time to start cutting your fabric pieces. You will need one piece of cotton and one piece of towelling, both cut to the same size. My pattern swatch is already cut to a square, but you can use whatever measurements work best for you. For my towel, I’m using pieces that are approximately 8 inches by 8 inches, but a common size is around 12 inches by 10 inches. To get started, I’m going to use my pattern swatch as a guide and cut off the white edges around the fabric. Then, I’ll cut out a piece of towelling that’s the same size as my cotton fabric. This will ensure that both pieces are the same size and will fit together nicely when it’s time to sew them.

Step 3: Sew the Edges

After you’ve cut your fabric, it’s time to sew the two pieces of fabric together. Place both right sides together, and start on a side not a corner otherwise it will be more difficult to turn through. Leave a gap to turn back through, about 2 inches, and pin a different way so you don’t sew it by accident. Then pin the rest as normal. When you get to the corner, simply stop with your needle down in the fabric, lift the pressure foot and turn the fabric. Place the pressure foot down, and continue sewing. After sewing, trim the corners and pull the towel through the open seam to be the right way out.

Step 4: Topstitch and Finish

Once the towel is right side out, press it and then topstitch close to the edge, ensuring all layers are secured. Now your reusable paper towel is ready for use.

Step 5: Use and Wash

Your reusable paper towel is now ready to use! Use it for all cleaning tasks but instead of throwing them away, you can toss them in the washing machine with your regular laundry.


In conclusion, reusable paper towels are a sustainable and cost-effective alternative to single-use paper towels. They are customizable, multi-functional, and toxin-free, making them a safer and healthier option for you and the environment. So why not make the switch and start using reusable paper towels in your home today?

Thank you for taking the time to read this article. If you’re interested in more eco-friendly sewing projects, be sure to check out my social pages and download my free sewing planner to keep track of your progress. Also don’t forget, the patterns on these reusable paper towels are available on my Spoonflower shop

Sewing Planner
Sewing Planner PDF

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3 Benefits of a great peer group

3 Benefits of a great peer group

I have been involved with our peer group for most of this year (2022) and have found so much value in having like minded people, I can relate to. Here are my top three benefits of a diverse peer group;

1 Brainstorm Trust – They are the best people to understand what you face in marketing and the art world, so running ideas off and with them is simply immeasurable. They may have already tried what you are thinking about solving and issue, and can advise how they went.

2 Connection – is key. Everyone needs connection, and connecting with others of the same interests and skills is imperative. Also being an artist can be a bit lonely at times, so having lovely friendships that you connect with are life saving.

3 Combined Skills – the best thing about having a group of people with similar interests is that we all have different skills, abilities and different life experiences. Plus we all look out for each other however we can. That may be recommendations on different approaches, it may be recommending who could complete something we need or it may just be an understanding nod. Knowing we are not the only ones facing the same issues is very reassuring.

We have all asked each other some questions and I will connect you to their pages so you can read their questions and answers as well.

Tammy de Zilva – Loopla Designs


What made you decide to be an artist?

Since I was young I have always had creative hobbies. I took a course in design fundamentals many years ago and learnt about surface design which was something I hadn’t heard of before and excited me a lot! I further explored this in my spare time and after quitting my unfulfilling IT career I decided to follow my dreams and establish my own business specialising in surface design.

What is your best-selling item and has your peer group influenced you in producing this?

My best selling product is my tea towels. Whilst this product was established before I joined this peer group, the group has been so supportive of my journey and encouraged me when I have new market stalls or launch a new product.

Where do you see your business in the next 5 years?

One of my goals is to release a fabric collection with Cloud 9 Fabrics

What made you decide to be an artist?

I’ve always been creative and have just kept on an arty path through school, university & working life

What is your best-selling item and has your peer group influenced you in producing this?

My best-selling item varies depending where it’s sold. At markets it’s tea towels but online it’s a shower curtain in a rainbow design that gets heavily promoted by both Redbubble & society6. Both of these were created before joining my peer group.

Where do you see your business in the next 5 years?

Hopefully selling more designs under my KOOSHTI brand rather than POD (Print On Demand)


What made you decide to be an artist?

I never actually decided to be an artist it just happened – I was always drawing in school regardless of the lesson -one primary school teacher said to me now is not the time to be drawing you’ll be doing that as a career now focus on today’s lesson!!

What is your best-selling item and has your peer group influenced you in producing this?

I am not at the stage where I am creating products yet. After spending many years working for other companies I’m now focussing on creating designs purely for me and my ideal customer. The peer group has been very inspirational to me in seeing others actually doing what I want to do – in our group, I see the day-to-day issues that come up when running your own business and I love the fact everyone shares what they know to support each other.

Where do you see your business in the next 5 years?

In five years’ time, I would like to have an established catalogue of designs that I license and also work in collaborations

Irene Tan – Missy Minzy

What made you decide to be an artist?

I have always loved drawing and creating from a very young age. The love for art has always been encouraged in my family.

What is your best-selling item and has your peer group influenced you in producing this?

I have a few best-selling items. There are my temporary tattoos, enamel pins, suncatchers and removable fabric wall decals. All were created before joining the peer group.

Where do you see your business in the next 5 years?

I love to see Missy Minzy (my business name) attracting many more potential stockists stocking my products in their shops within Australia and around the world. Having more paid collaboration with dream clients for better brand awareness and portfolio.


Thank you for reading, please connect with me on social media or send me an email at I would love to hear about the benefits of your experiences with peer groups.

The Artists Way – book review

The Artists Way – book review

The artists way by Julia Cameron has been one of the most influential books I have read about moving forward in creative practice. She talks about writing morning pages, and at the present stage. I am still working with this the most. There are many other things she has in the book for homework exercises, however, I will need to re-read it at a later stage to implement these processes.

So morning pages mean writing three pages every morning to get everything clear in my mind. This helps me to get any negative things or difficulties on the page and then work through a process on how to manage these difficulties and overcome them and ask for clarification or requests from God. It helps me sort through what things I need to be working on today to ensure that each day I make progress in my business.

When I did the ‘Immersion” course with Bonnie Christine, she talks about doing one thing each day to ensure you move towards your business goals. This is something I have taken on board and implemented each day. Some days don’t always make it into pages, but I am still moving very slowly in that direction.

Another of my business idols is Stacey Bloomfield, her motto is ‘slow growth is good growth’, this is so true and I absolutely relate to it.

Further, about the Artists Way, Julia Cameron talks about having an artist date. It is supposed to be on your own but I enjoy doing things with people, especially my family. However I do walk the dogs on my own often, so I guess I have my artist date each time I walk. There is always something different to see, a flower, or type of leaf, or an idea I get when just walking for that short time each day. I find it to be an extremely valuable experience. I take my phone so I can photograph something I may like to draw later. I also like to say hello to at least one person on my way, it gives me a feeling of community.

There are many other things Julia Cameron talks about in her book, but these two are the things that are what I have implemented so far and made a life-changing difference. This has changed the way I can focus and produce work for my business.

I enjoyed this book, however, I found some parts with the homework overwhelming, so I have left them until I get these first two into a pattern that is working. I recommend this book to anyone who needs clarity and direction in building their business. Of course, I still need clarification from others, but I get a good grounding on a direction first.

Please note, that I am not paid for this review, it is simply my thought after reading and implementing the directions of this book. If you enjoyed this review, please join my newsletter for further updates and reviews.