Gardening, Cooking and Decorating on the Prairie of Kansas

Welcome to Linderhof, our 1920's home on the prairie, where there's usually something in the oven, flowers in the garden for tabletops and herbs in the garden for cooking. Where, when company comes, the teapot is always on and there are cookies and cakes to share in the larder.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Of Linens and Lace

I've entertained a lot lately
Entertaining means napkins
And a lot means a lot!

There is nothing like vintage damask napkins.    Pure linen and soft from laundering.   
Ironed to a smoothness.    
The stack is almost all of my damask napkins
(I do have 8 more upstairs that match a tablecloth)
and some are my grandmother's and mother's
Damask napkins to me are a luxury but one that I embrace.

Gently rolled and inserted in my silver napkin rings

They lend an elegance, I feel, to the table.

The short pile are my new linen napkins
From Williams Sonoma or Pottery Barn
My everyday napkins
(And the everyday ones were much more expensive than the ones I save for company!)

They have their own napkin ring and we use them until they get too grimy
Which is why you have napkin rings!
In Victorian times, there wasn't a new napkin for every meal.
You inserted your napkin back in your napkin ring
And the next meal, there it would be at your place!

When I entertain, I like to use vintage tablecloths
Mostly the lace ones
Quaker Lace

The big one that I got at an estate sale for $5
(big as in it fits the table with all three leaves in it!)
Due to three old red wine stains.
There is a great product which I used
Which got out the stain
And I got an expensive tablecloth!
And one that I just adore!

A hand crochet one
There is just something elegant about lace!

I have two or three more Quaker Lace ones -- but they're smaller
But there is something pretty about the pattern of the lace on the wood table
With a soft vintage linen napkin
And some pretty china!

I have three damask tablecloths and I use them . . . sometimes
But they're a bit more fiddly than the lace ones.
But one was my grandmother's and I treasure it!


Thickethouse.wordpress said...

I love damask linen napkins and napkin rings and beautiful table cloths....When my mil went to boarding school in Budapest during WWI every student had to bring with her, among other things, a set of silverware (real silver) and a napkin ring, each engraved with her student number.

Anonymous said...

What is the product you recommend for stain removal?
Dawn R.

Pat said...

I adore the smaller lace tablecloth on your breakfast room table, dear friend!
This past week, I was gifted with several lace tablecloths!
However, nearly everyone has (yellow) stains. I am reluctant to use bleach.
Would you share your product that worked on removing the red wine stains, please?

Pondside said...

I love to set the table with white cloth and damask napkins. I find the large damask cloth a trial to iron and think back to our days in Germany when it was fairly inexpensive - because everyone did it - to send out the tablecloths to be ironed. They'd come back as smooth as silk, folded over a large hanger and ready to be hung in a closet - so much better than folded into a drawer.
The crocheted cloth in your photo is just lovely.

Anonymous said...

Yes, please, tell us the name of the stain remover you used? I have a beautiful Quaker lace cloth that I purchased in an antique store 20 years ago, that has some brown stains. I don't know how to get them out. It also has a few holes but those I can cover up with dishes. The stains are more problematic.

When I was growing up, our family always had individual napkin rings for our cloth napkins. The napkins were washed once a week, and then we got fresh ones. Paper was for picnics! Not daily use. I love beautiful cloth napkins and that's what I use today. P.S. I don't have a blog...

Sandra said...

Such beautiful table settings and I love all the tablecloths and cloth napkins. You are lucky to know how to care for them so well. Love how you choose to use all these wonderful treasures.