I am just thrilled to death to find a new piece of "equipment" for my kitchen...a pastry cloth!! Now there may be lots of people out there who've heard of one, seen one, or have one, but I had not. I have a few favorite blogs I'm subscribed too and one of those is called Make It and Love It. I ran across Ashley's site a couple of years ago when looking for ideas for my granddaughters and boy! did I ever find ideas! This young gal just puts this old timer to shame in all of her creative talents she puts forth throughout her home and for her children, but what I think caught me the most was just the "joy" I felt in seeing our younger generation enjoying, doing, and sharing so many hand-made skills....it just kind of makes me feel like "all is not lost"!!
Recently Ashley has been hosting guest spots on her blog and the latest one caught my eye right off and had me hooked...it was....the pastry cloth! I don't know that I would call myself a regular baker, but for the last few months I've gotten into making bread..often! So when I seen this post and read through the reasons a person should have a pastry cloth, I knew I had to have one too. Another young crafter, Cami from Tidbits, walks you through the whole process of making and using a pastry cloth and it's probably about theeeee easiest project a person could make. She dolls hers all up and when it's finished it looks like something out of a professional bake shop (with very little effort in getting it that way!) and I will admit mine looks nothing like hers!! ;) However, it took me all of 20 minutes to cut it and stitch it together...I actually made it before leaving for work the next morning! AND...I used it to work up some bread dough that night when I got back home!! :) The things works GREAT!! No using extra flour to keep your dough from sticking to the counter, just throw a little on the cloth, rub it in, and you're good to go....AMAZING...where has this thing been all my life?
I have yet to try it with cookie dough or pie crusts, but the post assures us it works just as well with all of those too....and I believe those girls!! ;) But I will be trying it for both in the near future. After using it last night, my head was seeing a new and improved pastry cloth in the making with this new found treasure, so this morning before work I was back upstairs cutting another one...and this one I intend to "fashion up" better than the first one.
There were a couple of things I did different than Cami and only because...well, that's just me!! In her post she called for a utility type material referred to as "drill cloth". I'd never heard of it, but apparently it can be bought at JoAnn Fabric and is much like canvas. Frugal person that I am (and always have been!), I wondered at using painters cloth...you know, the kind you can find at the hardware store for about $15? I don't live close to a JoAnn's or any fabric store for that matter, but I do have a husband that works in a hardware store!!! ;) So guess who just happened to have a really nice big one, on hand, clean and ready to cut into? Yep! Yep!
I also didn't use the measurement given in the post, but this is one of those things you can make it as big or small as you need it. I don't have a lot of open counter space to work on, so I only needed a good sized square. And again, unprofessional that I am, I did not take an exact measurement..I just laid out the cloth, eye-balled the size I thought I could use, doubled the fabric, and cut it. My painters cloth was a big one, so I had already cut it down into smaller sections AND it had also been pre-washed (it was originally for another project), so all I did was stitch it up, turn it, and press out the wrinkles.
I do have a wonderful old enamel topped table I use in my kitchen as an island, so those plans are for a new, and bigger, pastry cloth that I can use on it. I also want to "paint" it as Cami suggested because I really loved the old look of flour sacking hers had and I'll do the double stitch to give it a more finished look. Of course, I tend to make lots of plans and then have a hard time getting back around to getting them all completed, but if I never get around to making that fashionable one? I still have a fully functional pastry cloth at the ready!
I am just completely enamored with all these young wives and moms who are sharing their creative ideas and talents on blogs throughout cyberspace. It does my heart good to see them cooking and sewing, making and doing because there seems to be too few of MY generation that has an interest in any of it. And I can also say it doesn't bother me one bit that this "old dog" can still be taught some new tricks!! :)