Thursday, April 1, 2010

Memory Lane


I'm going through the trunk at the foot of my bed and I'm finding the outfits I used to bring the kids home from the hospital (my oldest baby turns 22 today), and bits of yarn and fabric meant for that project 'some day.' And then I came across this tea towel. I'm going to make you date yourself because it would be fun to know, do any of you have any relics like this in a closet from your childhood?
When my mother was little, little girls were taught to embroider and you were to learn to edge handkerchiefs and make tea towels and dresser runners for your home. So when I was a little girl, she taught me how to embroider as well and I always had a dresser runner on my dresser in my bedroom. I know I was very proud of myself for making all of those French knots! You can see them in the closeup, on the bonnet and in the skirt and on the flowers. I don't remember the names of the variety of stitches I learned, I haven't embroidered in years. And I never use this for real tea, I just put the cup there for reference!
When my girls were young I was a single mom and didn't have spare time to teach them these types of things. A while ago this was all still considered so old fashioned. The schools dropped classes like sewing and home ec long before any economic downturn. This summer though, my high school senior wants me to teach her how to quilt. Her sister will be home from college too and I think we'll do it together. I'm really looking forward to it. I've seen a huge resurgence in crafts and creating the past ten years and it is beautiful to see the lovely things on blogs all over the web.
But question time now . . . how many of you were taught to embroider when you were small? And do you have any pics of what you made that you can share with the rest of us? :) I'd love to see it!

13 comments:

Karen Lynn said...

PS, I dabbled in a lot of crafts at a kid, but I never had the patience to finish a project. I did some embroidery but again nothing that I finished and I don't have any pieces. When I got married I embroidered my name on a hankerchief to use when I walked down the isle. My intention was to pass this on to my daughter and have her (or me) embroider her name on it. Well, we all know that isn't going to happen!

Rhonda said...

Hi Peggy Sue!! I learned as a young girl as well. Sewing in 4-H etc. but I'm not a saver so unless my Mom has it somewhere it is probably gone!!

megspaulding said...

Oh so cute... Isn't it so fun to reminisce? Love that!

Traci M said...

Oh, does this bring back memories, and I bet there were some tears today too! I can't open those trunks, boxes, without some tears.
I have some pillowcases that I believe my Grandmom made, and a quilt that my Great-grandmother made for her family and my Mom's mom passesd down to me.
When I was young my Mom worked full time, but my best friend's mom had a sewing class and several of us took it. So to this day I do know sewing and I have things I made the girls and doll clothes I made for their little baby dolls.
To me those things are priceless, and I have kept them all...thanks for sharing your special tea sampler!!

Terri said...

I never learned how to embroider as a child, I wish I would have though. Your embroidery looks wonderful! I am so glad that you kept it!

The Mama Monkey said...

No embroidery here, but I did know how to knit at one point. :) Note the "at one point"...could not do it again if I tried!

Chef Mama Lori said...

PS, yes, I learned to embroider. Not a table runner, but I did pillowcases, some on a shirt, and then other things that I can't recall. My younger daughter is learning now. When we teach our American Girls class at homeschool co-op, we usually have a sewing/embroidery project at some point.

What amazes me, though, is that you made this piece with the word "China" on it. I'm guessing it was towel to use on china, but when I saw it, and then you mentioned finding it with baby clothes, I thought of your precious gift from China! Your youngest was embroidered on your heart before she was yours.

I have no pictures & am not sure where anything I made even is. I am very proud of all those French knots you made!

JazzyH said...

I used to do embroidery! Very fun!

Diane Jaquay said...

I was taught to embroider as a child (I'm 51). I remember doing some work on a pillow case, and a handkerchief, but sadly I do not have any of those pieces. My mom was not a "saver" of things like that, unfortunately.

Cammie said...

Peggysue, I became the keeper of many embroidered pieces done by grandmother and mother--pillowcases, dresser scarves, towels. I have an embroidered baby quilt hanging in my upstairs hall. And yes, I can remember learning to embroider. I think I even have my first piece with very looong stitches.:) I'll have to look for it and post a picture.

Gina said...

My mom taught me to embroider when I was little--I made pillowcases for my grandparents for Christmas the year I was in kindergarden. Then she taught me to cross-stitch. My great grandmother taught me to quilt and my grandmother taught me to crochet. I will have to look and see if my mom has pictures. Sounds like a great summer project for you and your girls.

Stephanie said...

My mother (finally) got rid of my baby clothes, with the exception of a few pieces. It's only been 33 years!! Each piece holds so many memories.

I was so fortunate to have so many home ec classes...our school has family & consumer sciences and still lets kids experience some basics.

thanks for sharing :)

Dell said...

You know, I did do some embroidery but honestly don't remember what I did with it. My sister taught me and she also taught me to cross-stitch. I still have several projects that are unfinished. I really need to get them done....ummm one day..

Actually, you have inspired me to go search my box where I keep them.

TFS I just love your embroidery work.