Italian Tablecloth! (almost)

So here’s the scoop, or should I say the big question…


The other day Friend Mary came by to visit. We had coffee, cake and chat. She brought me a gift of two tea towels because she had read in Nina’s blog, The Other Side of the Ocean about how I was madly in love with the tablecloth she’d gotten in Limone, Italy, while she was there a few months ago. I could not find anything just like it online, and Mary thought these tea towels were pretty similar to Nina’s.

That very afternoon, after she left, I went to the Crate and Barrel website and ordered two more, and now I plan to put them together to form a tablecloth for the breakfast/supper room (not the dining room as in these photos).


My question is, how should I do this?

1) Do I make four blocks with the four tea towels, like I’ve shown here in the photos? …or

2) Do I buy four more of them, and make two complete tablecloths with just one pattern on each (i.e. 4 tea towels per tablecloth sewn together)? …or

3) Do I cut these four tea towels up into smaller squares and make a real patchwork type of tablecloth out of them, like maybe 5-6″ squares or whatever would work with the measurements I have?

They were not so expensive that I would hesitate to buy 4 more of them. With four more, I could have two complete cloths each with only one pattern, peppers or lemons/citrus.

I am taking suggestions here, so don’t be shy.


Which will it be? Choice #1, Choice #2, or Choice #3?

Or… is there another way you can think of?

I’m all ears.



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18 Responses to Italian Tablecloth! (almost)

  1. Bex says:

    My final decision, having taken into consideration all your suggestions (thanks!) is #2, to make two tablecloths, one pattern each, and then I ordered some of the green towels with the stripes down the center to piece together as a border for both of them.

    Once that all arrives in the mail, I will embark on the sewing project and will, of course, keep you abreast of progress. With pictures, of course.

    I would have liked the small square patchwork, too, but I’ve never successfully done that kind of thing and, in fact, I tried it once but unsuccessfully, so I don’t want to muck up my towels not knowing what I’m doing. I think the 4 towels per tablecloth is about my speed.


  2. TopsyTurvy says:

    I’m the odd one out, I like the idea of the patchwork – though I do realize that’s a ton of work. If it were the patchwork, then I’d use the green border around all 4 edges, mitering the edges at the corners.


  3. mz. em says:

    I agree with everyone else that I like number two the best. I feel it would be easier on the eye and easier to launder.


  4. Bex says:

    Ah, CrochetLady! So you want me to not only buy 4 more towels, against Paul’s wishes, but you also want me to search out some plain green material (and it HAS to match, mind you) and go to even more trouble of making a “thin green border.” So that’s what you want? I may have to seriously consider this option.

    Actually it’s not so outrageous. Because at the web site I cited in the blog entry at Crate & Barrel, you will notice that there are also plain colored tea towels and I’m pretty sure they may coordinate with the colors in mine.

    Oh wait, you have to buy the set of the 4 colors. Drat!

    However, look at this one:

    I could use a few of these for the trim and maybe even keep part of the colorful stripes on it…

    Hmmm. I would like to keep all the fabrics the same if I can because I know, from experience, that dissimilar fabrics wash up differently, i.e. shrink/wrinkle, and you really want everything in an item to be the same type of fabric. OK…that gives me a lot to think about.

    Thanks sweetie!!!


  5. Crochetlady says:

    #2 with a thin green border!


  6. Bex says:

    I didn’t know you were going to the Cape, Mary. Oh wait, you said you were going somewhere for “a few days…” Sorry! Thanks for the vote though. I asked Paul what he would have voted for and he said the one that costs the least (if no) money. Figures.

    (He goes for his final body scan tomorrow looking for cancer cells, so fingers crossed everybody!) and after his breakfast tomorrow, that diet is OVER! Finally.


  7. Mary says:

    I think I told you that I was away at the Cape this week so that is why I didn’t vote. I think #2 also. Believe me, I did ask if they had a similar tablecloth and that was a negative. I am so glad you like them. If I had only known about the intended project, I would have purchased four of the same for you. Maybe you could use the odd pattern for contrasting napkins. By the way folks,the cake was delicious!


  8. Nina says:

    You know of course that they’re all clever and pretty. But I have to agree with your commenters. It feels like you want no. 2 and it seems like no. 2 is without question a beauty. So no.2

    Such a clever solution, BTW!


  9. Bex says:

    I have ONE MORE CHOICE that I thought of but forgot to mention. What if I get some plain colored fabric, such as the green in the prints, and put two tea towels together along their long edge and then put a block of the plain green color about 12″ all around the edges… Can you picture that?


  10. Bex says:

    So, basically we’re saying my idea (#1) wasn’t the best… I agree. And I don’t know if making a patchwork tablecloth will look so good. Or it might. Oh I can’t decide. Mary! What’s your opinion?


  11. l'empress says:

    My first thought was the same as #2 — two complete cloths of a single pattern. I thought it was just because I’m not very adventurous. 8)


  12. Michael says:

    Hey, what’s wrong with #3? It’s more work, but less money. (I think. What am I, an expert on this stuff?)


  13. Bex says:

    Yikes, this is looking unanimous… I will need to go look up that Crate & Barrel website again! Thanks guys. (I’m still waiting to hear from Mary, though, because this all started with her…)

    Here is The Crate & Barrel page of tea (or dish) towels. They don’t have such great patterns in tablecloths, though. At least not online. Some of these tea/dish towels are really super, no?


  14. Carol says:

    I like #2


  15. Betty Lou says:

    I would go for #2 also – unless Crate & Barrel have tablecloths to match the Tea Towels.


  16. Bex says:

    Wow, I never would have thought you’d go for #2…so you don’t prefer the mixed patterns, huh?

    OK…I’ll wait to hear from others, and I may go ahead and do that. I kind of like that idea, as well.

    (Hey Mary! What do you think?)

    Thanks Sandy & Karen… 😉


  17. sandy from iowa says:

    number 2


  18. Karen says:

    I think you want to do #2 and have two tablecloths.


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