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Seven Last-Minute, Do-It-Yourself Gifts for Under $20

Frugal procrastinators rejoice, your Christmas solution has arrived.

by
Megan Fox

Bio

December 23, 2011 - 12:19 am

7. 100% cotton dishcloths

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A nice set of dishcloths by Williams-Sonoma could run you anywhere from $25 to $40. A terrific gift for any cook in your family, there is no better counter-cleaner than a 100% American-grown cotton dishrag. I have several in my drawer that I’ve made right next to the store-bought kind and I don’t know why I keep the other ones when I never use them. I would rather wash my homemade cotton cloths every day than use the acrylic ones that get pilly and don’t absorb half what the cotton will. It will surprise you that I buy my cotton at Dollar Tree because 99% of their inventory is from China (including toothpaste…scary) but they carry Lily Cotton which is American-grown and made in Canada! Better yet, it’s the good stuff that would cost double at Hobby Lobby. “Sugar-n-Cream” cotton comes in all different beautiful colors and each roll for $1 yields 3 dishcloths. Stock up when you see them because they don’t last long. Also keep an eye out at the thrift store for cotton. It doesn’t take much to make a dishcloth so a half a roll will work! And thrift store prices are close to a quarter for cotton. Crocheting, even if you’ve never done it, is so easy you can learn in under an hour on YouTube and the pattern for these beautiful and useful cloths is as basic as it gets. I love crocheting because it always gives me an excuse to sit in front of the television without guilt because I’m not “just vegging out” I’m working! Pattern:

Chain 20 and turn (more or less depending on how wide you want your cloth). Skip first chain and double crochet into each chain until the end, chain 2 turn and repeat until you get your cloth to the size you want. Make it bigger, it’s a towel or smaller and it’s a cloth. If you’re more advanced you can add shell stitches around the cloth for embellishment or any number of other decorative stitches with contrasting colors to give it a little more flair.

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