I started finishing with four huck towels that have been stitched more years than I have had grandchildren. I loved doing these with all the women in my family. I have a drawer full of them already finished and use them…because I can’t take them with me and I know none of my children or grandchildren will want them. I’m saving them from a garage sale or worse the thrift market. And if I get the right out of the dryer I can hand press on counter and they require no iron. I have more huck toweling and after get some of this finishing out of the way may try again. Wish I could find linen huck towels, they are my favorite and colored huck toweling would be wonderful too; but all I can find now is white and it soils so quickly.
Anyway, I am starting my finishing with huck towels. First I pulled a thread at the bottom to make sure material was even…I would like to tell you this can instantly to me but truth is after I pined the first towel I realized the fabric was not even on the bottom…then it came back to me that I had seen my mother pull a thread (more about that later) and even the fabric up. Then I cut on the pulled thread line with my pinking shears. I used the floats (these are the parallel vertical threads on huck toweling you use to make the designs) to turn a small hem and then a hem about 1 inch. I pinned the hems and made sure I had not slipped a thread or two by matching the ends.
I always have to think about hemming…most of my needlepoint stitches are completed by stitching diagonally or from left to right and hemstitching is executed from right to left. It’s one of those out of order sequences for me. Here’s my diagrams that will go in my finishing notebook…the small stitches have been exaggerated, you really should not see the stitches. I just catch a few threads on the backside (top) and try never to go to the front of the fabric. (This is where those floats on huck toweling are good. Slide the needle about 1/4 inch left and come out very close to the turn back(1/4 inch) in the pinned 1 inch hem.
It was fun to stitch these towels and remember the wonderful women who stitched these and gave me my love of needlework . I never appreciated how detailed my mother was in her craft work. She was an office manager and very left brained in her life, so it should have been no surprise to me she would be this way in her crafts too. Notice this towel with the overdyed thread all the threads have been pre-cut to keep the color in the proper areas. But on the small band on the other end she either forgot or accidentally stitched with the wrong end of the thread in the needle.
And this pink to red overdye probably drove her nuts because there was no pre-cutting, it was a random pull. Would not be surprised if my grandmother didn’t stitch this one, she was the creative one in the family. The green one I may have done but I’m not sure, looks pretty complicated for a kid…but as many of these as we made I got pretty good. The yellow towel I know i stitched…I have a yellow ducky collection in my bathroom (surprise surprise surprise…another collection; but then my friend says you have three of a kind it is a collection…I have too many collections!)
When I went to hang three of the towels (pink ones) in the office bathroom I found one my mother had finished and she open hem stitched it. Remember I told you I remember her pulling a thread or two? Well, maybe she was pulling threads to do an open hem stitch; but I think she pulled a thread to even the fabric too. I was lucky to get mine hemmed, open hem stitching will have to wait another day. But now they are stitched hanging in my office bathroom, I can see them from my desk. They will get little or no use (I keep Viva towels in there for everyday use.) The towel wall is mostly decorative and I figure I will enjoy them the most. The bath towel in the center hanging on the men’s suit hanger my great Aunt Rose made and it hangs on a wooden hanger from a men’s clothing store my mother managed for years. Aunt Rose crocheted around the hand towel and then crocheted the basket right onto the towel…needless to say it has never been used. It is a treasure. Isn’t it fun to look at things that were made when life was slower and simpler; it brings back such fond memories of those that shaped who I am today.
Thank you for stopping by, I hope you have time to stitch today! ttfn…sue