A Common Question:
Part 1 - I have been asked many times what textile references I have found helpful. That all depends on the textile involved...
For Victorian Paisley Shawls - "Victorian Paisley Shawls" by Chet Gadsby
For Linens there are a few:
"Vintage White Linens from A to Z" by Marsha Manchester
"Collecting Household Linens" & "Collecting More Household Linens" by Frances Johnson
"Collecting Antique Linens, Lace, and Needlework" also by Frances Johnson
"Graced by Lace" by Debra Bonito
"20th Century Linens & Lace" by Scofield & Zalamea
For Antique Lace:
"Guide to Lace & Linens" by Elizabeth Kurella
"The Identication of Lace" and "A Dictionary of Lace" by Pat Earnshaw
For Handkerchiefs: "Printed & Lace Handkerchiefs" by Betty Wilson
"The Collector's Encyclopedia of Buttons" By Sally Luscomb
"Antique & Collectible Buttons" by Debra Wisniewski
"Button Button" by Peggy Osbourne
Part 2, next month, I will list my quilt references...I don't want to overwhelm you in one issue!
Feature Article: "A Sentimental Journey"
Do you remember your first experience with a textile? I seemed to grow up around them without truly appreciating them. My Nana always embroidered, and I have many of her unfinished works, that I should finish while I can still show them to her. My Great Grandmother Crocheted Doilies were always on the furniture under a lamp or candy dish or plant. I inherited many of them and keep them hidden away for my girls. But I think my earliest memory were of my Great Aunts and their House Dresses. We are talking 1970s here, not too far back. I remember as a little girl, no older than 5, being put in a corner with a pretty floral house dress to hem. I realize now it wasn't because it needed a hem...they needed me out of the way for what ever reason...but boy did they make me feel important. The Uncles played Pinnacle, the Aunts cooked dinner, and I sat in the corner, happily hemming. I can smell the lamb and my Grandfather's pipe. I can feel the soft wood of the chair I sat in, and it makes me smile. Is that where an affinity towards something starts? Is it not just the item, in this case a simple House Dress, but the sweet memories that arise from them.
Maybe I collect old buttons because I remember sitting in the basement with Great Grandma's Button Tin, loving the sound they made when I moved my hand around it. I still remember many of those buttons, some black glass, a few of those large coat buttons with the Navy Anchor on them, the "Magic Thread" was in there, too...a thick heavy black thread, that my grandfather would use to pull out my loose teeth. Ah, the good old days.
I remember playing behind my Yea Yea's (that was another Grandmother) Barkcloth curtains, my fingers following the tiny textures. The black and white houndstooth pattern day bed I slept in when I visited her house. And the feel of her soft silk pajamas when she tucked me in.
Unfortunately, there are no family quilts, which is what I truly love. But I am making sure my girls don't have that same problem. They will have many of them, in addition to Great Grandma's Doilies, Nana's Embroidery, and my mother's crocheted blankets.