Tuesday, June 2, 2009
Linen Tea Towel
I did not know that collecting linen tea towels were so popular until i went to Kak Intan's home sweet home and found her collection hanging over the tea towel rail in the kitchen.
And my "little hobby" began...when my sisters or friends went overseas, I would ask them to bring back a tea towel..but since they seem too nice to be used, so they sit in a drawer! Here’s a few of my favorite ones from my own linen closet:
Many tea towels were made of Irish linen, and a lot of the ones you find today are made by Ulster Linens. Above pic is Ulster Weavers 100% Linen tea towel in a design called Provence. A Royal Doulton one colour fleur-de-lis design.
Sweet print tea towel...taken from original Harrods catalogues.
I like the Harrods towel with the cups and saucers. This stylish linen tea towel is decorated with a selection of beautiful china tea-cups…They are lovely.
Another great tea towel from Harrods featuring assorted herbs; coriander, oregano, bays and dill.
Cherries - Ulster Weavers Linen Tea Towel in a light brown border.
Ulster Weavers 100% Linen tea towel in a design called Camelia.
Ulster Weavers 100% Linen tea towel in a design called Orchard Blossom. A colourful illustration of plums, apples and cherries.
Orchid Study - Ulster Weavers Linen Tea Towel
Orchids pictured: Odontoglossum, Cattleya Brabantiae, Cattleya Dowiana, Pleurothallid Dracuvallia, Laelia Purpurata, Zygoneria
One may first look at a tea towel and be curious as to what purpose they serve. Absorbent in nature they serve as wonderful kitchen towels because they instantly soak up any water without shedding the annoying fibers that terry towels often leave behind, and also dry at a much faster rate. For a classier type of practicality they were originally made to set under the tea pot and tea cups to beautify the arrangement and also catch any runaway drops of tea. Tea towels are also commonly used to decorate a kitchen or bar. As they are either very witty or decoratively designed, they lend themselves to wall hangings very well- particularly when framed.
Irish printed Tea towels came in to use in the early 50's when the Irish began to replace plain linen tea towels with printed towels producing conversational interest. These early towels ranged from maps of Ireland to pictures of the Beatles. They were always executed with the subtlest expression typical to Irish dry wit. Now some of these towels have become collector items.