Hankerin’ for the Hankies.

I love handkerchiefs. I bought five or six at one of the estate sales I went to two Saturdays ago. This brings my current hankie collection to approximately 2,195.

This is about a fourth of what I have! Some scans of some of my favorites…

I think handkerchiefs are one of the most obvious symbols of how our culture has changed over the past fifty years. We didn’t use disposable Kleenex to blow our noses — we used actual fabric and washed it repeatedly. AND we took great care to make these items as attractive as possible! Even though we were blowing our noses on them! Look at the two on the far right side — those are children’s handkerchiefs. Even the kids carried hankies.

I’ve been keeping a file of magazine articles of ideas of handkerchief ideas. I love this one — I meant to use it for my own wedding, then got off task, as usual. Ring pillow out of hankies, from Martha Stewart:

Awesome hankie valance, no sewing necessary, from one of Better Homes and Gardens’ publications:

Using handkerchiefs for frame projects, from Martha Stewart and, again, BHG:

Handkerchiefs as photo mats. This would work splendidly with the handkerchiefs with irregular borders.

Handkerchiefs as art! I definitely have a few that would look beautiful framed, no other decoration necessary.

Here’s my favorite: handkerchiefs as headboard:

…from a BHG magazine. I love the colors of these. I love brown and blue together as a general rule.

April 26, 2010 - 8:50 pm

janie hightower Well, you poor little thing! What kind of mother do you have? SHE should’ve been the one to think of making that ring pillow for your wedding!!!
I love every idea for handkerchiefs that you have posted, especially the valance.
Yes, we DID all used to have handkerchiefs to carry to school when we were little. We would use toilet paper at home, but when we went out, we always got asked if we had a handkerchief in our pocket or purse. Daddy had “work handkerchiefs” and “Sunday handkerchiefs”, which got ironed.

April 26, 2010 - 9:36 pm

Lara Jo That’s what I meant by getting “off task.” When I drove down I forgot both the photo AND the vintage hankies. If I hadn’t been so scatterbrained, I know that my mother WOULD have made that for me.

February 8, 2011 - 1:23 pm

Sharon Mankin Just wanted you to know that I loved your post and mentioned it in my blog about handkerchiefs today. What precious, creative ideas for displaying these beautiful little treasures! Appreciate you!