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Coordinating Mismatched Towels

Most linen closets hold a few perfectly usable but mismatched towels. You can easily unify an assortment of solid-colored towels by sewing on washable, decorative ribbon that complements all the hues.

Photography: John Gruen

Source: Martha Stewart Living, September 2001


  • Washable decorative ribbon

  • Needle and thread

  • Sewing machine

  • Terry towels


  1. Baste ribbon onto the right side of the towel along the dobby trim that is woven into most terry towels, or at a similar distance from the edge, about 2 to 3 inches. Turn the ends of the ribbon under for a neat edge.

  2. On a sewing machine, secure the ribbon in place using a small zigzag stitch. The result is a multicolor matched set that is good for more years of service.

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