Saturday, November 19, 2011

Baby Caroline

This pretty little porcelain doll is named Caroline and she was handmade by my Grandmother. The vintage hanky bonnet was given to me by my Mother-in-Law when my first child was born. The dress is also vintage and the poinsettia dresser scarf was hand embroidered many years ago by someone I do not know. I treasure hand embroidery, babies, vintage linens and my dearest Grandmother.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Vintage Inspiration

Inspiration comes to me when I envision pretty, little objects like vintage sewing notions, lace, buttons and embroidery thread. Put them together with an old photograph, artfully arranged in a shadow box, and Voila. I can sit on a beach all day picking shells, or sift through a tin filled with old buttons. Not many like to iron, but I love it... only vintage linens though. There's nothing like restoring an antique tablecloth, a lace handkerchief or a chenille bedspread back to its original splendor. I find inspiration admiring skilled, Madeira embroidery just as much as a dresser scarf embroidered from a kit. Handmade, crochet lace, as with all of these old textiles has become a lost art. I lovingly collect all of these things, preserving them for my collections and restoring them for someone else to enjoy for years to come.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Vintage Linens on Etsy

Friday, July 8, 2011

Antique Sewing Machine and Lamp

This photograph was taken in the guest room of my home. Over many years I've collected vintage treasures to decorate this room. This is a few of the items I've collected. As you can see, there is a wonderful, antique sewing machine I've utilized as a display for my gorgeous lamp and linens. On the left you see a antique damask towel with turkey red embroidery of a brush and comb. Beside it, I've placed a silver plated comb, brush and mirror to match the linen. There is an art deco style mirror embroidered on the back side of the towel. Believe it or not, the lace piece on the right is a vest! It's filet lace with fringe and a monogrammed M. I also have pearl hair combs and a perfume bottle my Mom gave to me. The little sewing machine displayed on the treadle holds vintage spools of thread. How adorable! I found the lamp at a local yard sale for only $10.00. All of these items were wonderful finds.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Cleaning Old Quilts

When cleaning old, fragile quilts, place a bed sheet on the bottom of your bathtub to rest the quilt on. Test for colorfastness then soak with your favorite detergent for at least 6 hours. Do not agitate. Let dirty water drain. Fill tub again and soak overnight. Rinse, Rinse, Rinse. Use the sheet to lift the quilt to prevent the fabric from tearing. You'll need lots of towels. Place quilt between towels while pressing to transfer some of the water. On a bright, warm sunny day, gently place outside on the lawn to dry.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Vintage Handkerchiefs ~ The Whimsical and the Elegant

Handkerchiefs have been around for thousands of years, but the most common we find today are hankies from the first half of the twentieth century.

There are so many different kinds for every taste. Some people may collect just one theme or a favorite color, and many love to collect designer hankies. Some popular themes were maps of the fifty states, children and animals, political hankies, floral, fashion and hankies for the holidays. Some were sold in cards ready for gift giving, there were hankies with calendars and horoscopes, and many actually gave advice such as how to get a husband and how to speak French. A few popular designers from this era were Tammis Keefe, Carl Tait, Pat Prichard and Tom Lamb. Did you know that Tammis Keefe worked pseudonymously under the name Peg Thomas?

Beside fun and kitschy handkerchiefs are the beautiful and dainty hankies with hand made lace, crochet and embroidery. You can find them from Madeira with elegant monograms or from Switzerland with exquisite embroidery. Many were made from the finest Irish linen and the hanky with the colorful embroidery is from China.

Our mothers and grandmothers delicately crocheted and tatted these textile treasures and adorned them with hand embroidery and lace. Daughters would carry a fine, white linen and lace hanky on their wedding day. Antique wedding hankies, carried only once then tucked away for safe keeping, can still be found in mint condition. Two of my most treasured were given to me by my mother-in-law for the birth of my first child. Sewn into baby bonnets with satin ribbons attached, they are affectionately displayed on my nightstand.

I love vintage hankies! I carry one always and pin one to my purse with a matching rhinestone brooch to compliment my outfit for the day. They can be used on shelves as colorful or elegant doilies, made into aprons and quilts, doll clothes, accent pillows; they may be used as intended or decoratively framed to showcase their whimsy and beauty.