For years, people have mourned the fading tradition of recipe boxes: those file folders filled with handmade favorites, loose-leaf pages covered with familiar scrawl so deftly describing the path to intense culinary nostalgia.
As the internet has taken over, few people pull out faded pages of cursive anymore — even if you still use the recipe, it’s likely stored in your phone or on a computer for safekeeping. But it’s a beautiful tradition, and one Redditor — unwilling to let go of those precious papers quite yet — came up with a smart way to preserve the original, handwritten recipes for a longer time and for more people: she made the recipes into tea towels.
We’ve previously talked about Martha Stewart’s advice to digitize old recipes for preservation, but this takes that up a notch — and keeps it front and center in the kitchen. In the example shown, the original poster took grandma’s chocolate chip cookie recipe from its framed notecard and blew it up into a towel.
The original poster links to a 2012 blog post that has the instructions that they used to create the memento. To create your own recipe tea towel, you’ll want to take photos of each recipe, then use photo-editing software to get them into the proper size and shape to print onto the towel, as well as to remove any yellowing or discoloration from age that you don’t want printed (though sometimes those stains are a part of the beauty of old recipe cards!).
Then you’ll send them into Spoonflower, a custom fabric printing company, and they print the photo files onto the linen fabric. Finally, you cut out each one and sew up a border to complete them. The whole thing sounds fairly simple — even for a non-craftsperson — and, as people note in the comments, is just the kind of birthday or holiday gift that will bring relatives to tears (the good kind).