Reusable Paper Towels

  • By Benito C Lopez III

Teaser - Reusable _Paper_ Towels.jpg

The average American household spends $200 to $400 on disposable paper towels annually which amounts to a total of $5.7 billion dollars, half the global total, for this product. This cost saving project is an easy way to create a roll of reusable towels that can be washed, sanitized, and reused, reducing the burden on landfills and saving money for the household! 

What you need:
  • 40wt Polyester Thread
  • Terry Cloth (1 yard makes 12 towels)
  • Hook and Loop Tape (1 inch wide)
  • Fabric Marking Pen
  • Sewing machine with a General Purpose/Utility Sewing Foot
  • Optional: Overlock machine with a General Serger/Overlock Foot
  • Ruler
  • Cutting Mat
  • Rotary Cutter
  • Pins
  • Empty Paper Towel Roll
  • Hot Glue Gun or Permanent Glue
Get Started

1. Start by cutting the terry cloth into 11” x 11” squares

1 - Reusable _Paper_ Towels.jpg

2. Next, cut the Velcro tape into strips that are  9 inches long, then cut the 1 inch strips in half to make strips that are ½ inch by 9 inches. Separate the hooks from the loops and set aside to be used later in the project.

3. Set the serger up for a 3-thread narrow overlock stitch or set the sewing machine up for an overlock stitch. Overlock all four edges of the 11in x11in squares.

2 - Reusable _Paper_ Towels.jpg

4. On each square, mark a line down the entire length 0.25in from the edge on one side.

5. Turn the squares over and mark a line down the entire length 0.25in from the edge on the OPPOSITE edge.  You will now have one terry cloth square with a single line marked on each side of the fabric.

6. Using a hot glue gun or permanent glue, center a hook strip and glue to the center of the empty paper towel roll.  

7. Prepare your machine with the General Purpose/Utility foot, bobbin, and 90/14 sized topstitch needle.

8. Choose a Reinforced Zig-Zag stitch.

9. On your first 11in square, center one 9in loop strip along the line marked on one side of the terry cloth and pin it in place, keeping it aligned 0.25in from the edge as marked. 

10. Sew the strip and set aside. This is the first square that will be removed from the roll so it only has the hook and loop tape on one side.

4 - Reusable _Paper_ Towels.jpg

11. On the remaining squares, sew the remaining hooks to one side of the square and loops to the opposite/reverse sides. Keep strips centered and aligned .25 inches from the edge.

5 - Reusable _Paper_ Towels.jpg

12. Start by attaching the loop side of one square to the hook strip you attached to the empty roll. 

13. Continue attaching hooks to loops.

14. When you reach the end, attach the starter square.

15. Roll the length of squares onto the empty roll. 

16. Place your new roll of Reusable Towels onto a holder and enjoy lower cost cleaning!