Oh to live in a time, when a coordinating hankie was the accessory of choice. These dainty and exquisite pieces of history sure have stories to tell. They undoubtedly were used to wipe tears, both of sorrow and joy. They gracefully dried little sniffles or the monstrous boogies of the little ones. Perhaps they wiped crumbs from fancy desserts from an afternoon tea or were stuffed in a lunch pail of a farmer’s wife.
I recently scored a box full of these lovely little gems from a fellow junker and I have been smiling ever since; wondering what creative path they would take me on. I was reminded of my fabric fat quarter rosettes I recently did to glam up a vintage tackle box [read the full story here]. However, I did not want to attack these historical lovelies with a hot glue gun. Continue reading to learn how I brought new life to these hankies, with a careful hand.
Vintage Hankies (Cleaned & Pressed)
Before | After
With some trial and error, I worked through the kinks (and a few pin punctures) to create hankie rosettes. I gathered the necessary supplies, as shown below. I actually have worked on the rosettes in a variety of places: while house-sitting for friends, on the couch, cozy in my bed, or even in the car (in the passenger seat, of course).
To begin, I ensured the hankies were pressed. Then, I folded the hankie in half.
Next, I rolled the half-folded hankie.
To make the rolling and stitching process easier, I sewed a few quick stay-stitches in the middle of the rolled hankie.
To create the center of the “rosette,” I tightly rolled one of the ends. I sewed several stitches to secure the inner roll.
At this point, I continued wrapping and twisting the loose “tail” of the hankie around the center coil. This process took some getting used to. I made a quick stitch approximately every 1/3 of the way around. The photo below would be the bottom side of the hankie rosette.
When flipped to it’s “front” side, the stitches appear to be hidden.
Now for the fun! I’d love to hear from you. How would you add these little lovelies to a project?
I added some true vintage flair to my daughter’s military hat.
The modeling session was short-lived.
I also plan on adding these hankie rosettes to some of my vintage framed message boards. My lovely little niece, Vivian (the queen of hair bows) will be getting some fun vintage headbands. I have leather bracelets, adored with these rosettes in mind too.