I love the fact that the proprietor of the charity shop around the corner from me, has such a keen interest in vintage tea towels, that head office send all the tea towels that come in, directly to our branch. Ever since my mother-in-law explained to me that linen tea towels dry dishes significantly better than good old cotton ones, I find it hard to buy anything else*. The ones at my local store 'After-a-Fashion' (excellent word play) are predominantly linen, in mint condition and never more than $7. I have ummed and ahhed over printed Mexican embroideries, Australian wildlife sketches and 70's Pucci-esque abstracts; here are a few of the loveliest I've made off with.

100% linen. Screen-printed rosella, swallow and lorikeet scene.

54% linen, 46% cotton. By Ross. Screen-printed Australian butterflies.

100% Irish linen. By Dunmoy. Screen-printed pipe-smoking walrus in roll top bath.

60% linen, 40% cotton. By Murray Views. Screen-printed kitsch Cairns collage.

*Actually true.