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Q&A Ruby Seeto for Starship

01 Aug, 2022

Starship Collection for 2022

We’re delighted to introduce Ruby Seeto’s range for 2022, the Starship Citrus Tea Towel and Washcloth Set. We’ve been working with Ruby and Starship since 2009 when she was an 11 year old cancer survivor, designing, creating and selling tea towels to fundraise for Starship. Together we’ve raised over $670,000 to support multiple projects around Starship Children’s Hospital, including improvements to the Oncology, Medical Specialties, Neurology and Heart Wards.

Starship Citrus Tea Towel
This years tea towel features pretty citrus slices in orange and pink tones along with an easy to follow recipe to create them yourself. Designed by Ruby, produced and sold by Wallace Cotton with all proceeds after costs being donated directly to Starship.

To keep up to date with Ruby and her fundraising efforts, follow @rubysteatowels on Instagram and @Rubys Tea Towels on Facebook.

We sat down with Ruby to chat about the inspiration behind her new design, the importance of this year’s fundraising project, and her thoughts on the difference we’ve made together so far.

Fundraising Focus

Proceeds from the sale of Ruby’s Citrus Tea Towel and Washcloths will help fund the upgrade of the Children’s Emergency Department (CED) Staff Tearoom at Starship. The CED is a busy department, seeing over 26,000 children every year. By upgrading the tearoom from a basic, functional space to a comfortable and relaxing environment for well-deserved breaks, we hope to demonstrate the gratitude we feel towards the hard working CED staff.

We chatted with Ruby about her new design, her fundraising efforts and how she plans to use her pretty citrus slices for some culinary inspiration.

Q: What was your inspiration for this year’s tea towel design?

A: I love absolutely love citrus! The combination of the bright, vibrant colours of all the different citrus fruits sitting in the kitchen caught my eye one day and I thought they’d work perfectly on a tea towel. At the same time, I’d also noticed more restaurants and bars using dried citrus to decorate desserts and drinks and so looked into the recipe to DIY – turns out it’s easy peasy!

Q: Tell us 3 recipes you’ll be decorating with your pretty citrus slices

A: CAKES - Oven dried lemon slices on top of a lemon cake are super pretty. Mum’s Lemon Yoghurt Cake recipe is the best!

DRINKS - Dried lemon and lime slices make any drink look fancy. My Starship Spritzer tea towel recipe from a few years ago is the perfect drink for all seasons. Simply cut halfway into the citrus slice and wedge it onto the side of the glass.

TABLESCAPES – I’ve seen dried citrus slices used to create beautiful ‘tablescapes’ and think it’s a great idea that I’d like to try one day using the recipe on my tea towel! Scatter different sized citrus fruits across a white tablecloth to create pops of colour on and around crockery, cutlery, stemware and napkins. Stunning!

Q: What does this year’s fundraising project mean to you?

A: I'm so happy to have the opportunity to improve staff rest space in the Children’s Emergency Department (CED). With covid-19 and other nasty winter bugs putting pressure on staff, I think this is an incredibly deserving project of our support this year. As a former Starship patient, I know first-hand that positive friendly staff make all the difference to patients and their families’ wellbeing. I hope that being able to take breaks in a more relaxing and comfortable environment will help lift staff morale and make life a little easier for the amazing doctors and nurses at Starship.

Q: Why is this year’s project is so important to Starship staff, patients and their families?

A: The Children’s Emergency Department is one of the busiest areas of the hospital, seeing thousands of children. Upgrading the staff tearoom will give our hardworking doctors and nurses a dedicated space to better rest and recharge on their well-deserved breaks.

Q: How do you feel knowing you have raised over $670,000 for Starship so far?

A: Very proud! Giving back to the hospital that helped me recover from cancer is so important to me and I’m so happy that that funds raised each year have been able to help improve the Starship experience in some small way for patients, their families, and hardworking staff who work there. A huge thank you to everyone who buys my designs every year – this figure has only been made possible with your continued support!

Q: Do you have a fundraising goal for your Citrus Slice Tea Towel?

A: My goal each year is always to raise as much money as possible! The more funds we raise, the more we can help provide better care for Starship kids and their families. Last year, my designs raised an impressive $44,350 for the Starship Foundation; I’d love to beat that result this year!

Gifting that gives twice

Serve up home baking and spring drinks with a pretty citrus garnish recipe, perfect for entertaining as we head into the warmer months. Ruby has shared how to create her dehydrated citrus slices on her new Wallace Cotton tea towel design for 2022.

Ruby’s tea towels have become collectors’ items over the years and her new designs are always eagerly anticipated. They make easy, thoughtful gifts and with $6 from the sale of every tea towel and $4 from every washcloth set donated to Starship, it’s the little gift that gives twice.

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