DIY Barnwood Clean and Dirty Personal Hand Towel Baskets

My brother in law asked for a paper towel coming out of the bathroom one day and I was like there is a hand towel in there to wipe your hands. He then informed me that hand towels carry a lot of bacteria and are not sanitary. After this incident I tried to wash the hand towels in the bathrooms regularly especially after a sickness but his comment has always stuck with me. So decided to do a little research. Turns out he was right.

Many people don’t wash their hands thoroughly, he says, so when they dry their hands on a towel, they’re rubbing bacteria into a place it’s likely to grow. “After about two days, if you dry your face on a hand towel, you’re probably getting more E. coli on your face than if you stuck your head in a toilet and flushed it,” Charles Gerba, a microbiologist at the University of Arizona. Time Magazine (see article here)

Now I wouldn’t go crazy the article goes on to best suggest ways to reduce germs from spreading and how to keep your hand towel from becoming a petri dish. However, have no fear I have a solution that also adds a bit of luxury to your home. Having gone to fancy restaurants, resorts and even our dentist office offers personal reusable hand towels so why not offer individual reusable hand towels in your own bathroom for you and your guest to use.

diy bathroom decor hand towel display


For this project I used:

  • Barnwood (could use any piece of wood)
  • 2 Baskets
  • Personal Handtowels
  • Sawtooth Hanger
  • Stencil
  • Mod Podge
  • White Paint (0r color of choosing)
  • Foam Brush
  • 3/4″ Fence Staples
  1. Cleaned and sanded wood surface especially since I was using barn wood but if new wood might be necessary.
  2. Used a Cricut to cut to make stencil here is free download for Clean and Dirty letters used for this project

2. Used Mod Podge to make a layer on the stencil to help prevent the paint from seeping and leaking especially since barnwood is naturally uneven but beautifully aged! (sorry picture is dark it was done at night, also I used a foam brush without a stick because my 20 month old broke it within seconds me bringing it up for this project)

DIY Home Decor Sign

3. After Mod Podge drys now you are ready for the paint, I did a few layers waiting for each to dry in between.

DIY bathroom towel sign

4. Remove stencil and clean up any necessary spots then next add the backing in this case I used a large sawtooth hanger.

diy home decor bathroom

5.  Used 3/4″ fence staples because happened to have them and they worked to secure the baskets I bought on clearance! So pending on baskets could vary on amount needed. I tired a smaller 1/2″ fence staple but was not large enough to secure basket firmly. Also would have probably chosen to spray paint the staples and might even go back to do so later but something to think about pending on basket color you find!DIY bathroom sign home decor6. Project completed now just add towels and you are germ free with luxury and enjoy!

DIY bathroom decor

Always Dreaming or Doing,


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