Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.
The Kitchen Linens Book: Using, Sharing, and Cherishing the Fabrics of Our Daily Lives Hardcover – March 17, 2009
|New from||Used from|
See the Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
About the Author
More About the Author
As a further outlet for my love of aprons, I created Tie One On Day. Annually recognized by Chase's Calendar of Events on Thanksgiving Eve, the 4th Wednesday of November (11/22/06 this year), the designated day celebrates the humble apron and the spirit of women of earlier generations who donned the universal symbol of home, family and mothering as the uniform of their daily wardrobe and helped make America the great country it is today.
The process by which I turn the apron memories of others into evocative narratives is one I presented at the 2006 International Obituary Writers' Conference. I've never met a happier group of writers, and I'm already at work with Carolyn Gilbert, the Conference organizer, on next year's live-ly presentation.
No one is more surprised than I that the apron has brought into my life the most amazing bounty of friend-ship, storytelling and joy. Aprons! Who would have imagined?
At the first writer's conference I attended in 2000, I was inspired by Jack Canfield, co-creator of the Soup for the Soul empire, that "Going for it is the only way to go." Serendipi-tously, my very first writing sale was 2 years later to Chicken Soup for the Parent's Soul. A second essay (and tribute to my mama)- I Never Saw My Mother Do a Sit Up - appears in Chicken Soup To Inspire a Woman's Soul. And my vignette on the book that influenced my life appears in Jack's (!!) latest, You've Got To Read This Book! 55 People Tell the story of the Book that Changed Their Life. While I doubt other contribu-tors like Malachy McCourt, John Gray, Dave Barry, Craigslist founder Craig Newmark, eBay COO Maynard Webb,and Jacquelyn Mitchard (Oprah's first Book Club author)are excited I'm one of the 55, I am ecstatic to be included.
I live in Pueblo, Colorado, with my prince charming, Hank. My sons, Noah and Gideon, have flown the coop. Like their Dad, they are excellent husband material, and will one day be someone's prince charming.
September 1, I'll celebrate a 31st wedding anniversary. Last year, we toasted one another in China; this year, we'll be clinking champagne glasses and swatting mosquitoes out back on the patio.
Truffles, our departed pet, was so beloved, we had her memorialized in a life-size portrait. Framed in faux gold, the painting hangs in our dining room, her favorite spot. Years since her puttin' down, we still can't talk about her without tearing up.
Top Customer Reviews
Being from the South myself, I have to tip my bonnet to EllynAnn. I felt like I was sitting in her kitchen and listening to her tell stories of her family (and others). The writing is so warm and friendly, you almost forget you are reading a book and not in her company. Additionally, I love the stories written by other women that she has woven throughout the pages. There are also tips, tricks, recipes and craft suggestion. But the heart and soul of this book, in my opinion, are the testimonies she gives about her tablecloths, napkins, dishtowels, aprons and more. Every word she writes drips with her love and admiration of the times in which the linens were made, the hard work that went into making them, and the lives their previous owners led.
To be fair, there was a disappointment. There were suggestions and ideas that she mention (like layering her linens) that sound amazing, but I could not picture how to do it (and I desperately want to know so I can recreate it) but there were no images of how this was done. It seems, considering how many lovely pictures this book contains, that there would be more pictures of the ideas she discusses.
Nevertheless, I adore this book. I am encouraged to pick up a little embroidery of my own. Maybe, a few generations from now, some woman will use my tea towel and honor my life the way EllynAnne has done for generations past.
This book is delightful and a must-have for your book collection.
Note to readers: This book was received as part of the Early Reviewer's Group on LibraryThing. My thanks to LT and the publishers for a copy of the book. This review can also be found on LT.
This book is a celebration of the everyday textiles which are taken for granted, used, abused and often thrown out. Interspersed with memories from a range of people, a few recipes and ideas for using vintage linens, this is a sweetly nostalgic trip through the author's collection, and by extension, lifestyle. If you find the thought of entertaining friends with afternoon tea, dished up on a table dressed with hand-embroidered tablecloths and linen napkins, whilst wearing a 1950's apron completely alien, this is not the book for you. However, if you are interested in a celebration of an area of handwork that is often overlooked then this may well be of interest. This is not a serious text on textile history or sociology however.
The author gives a range of ideas for making use of vintage linens of all kinds, and many memories are shared of these pieces being used and loved over generations. One minor quibble - the author describes Scottish Terriers as being an English-bred dog. I think an entire nation of Scots may be offended by that one!
What it turned out to be is an wonderfully readable appreciation of antique and vintage kitchen linens: tablecloths, napkins, placemats, aprons, and teatowels. Geisel is an expert on the subject, and has also written The Apron Book and Apronisms.
Chapter topics include discussions of the various fabrics used to make the items, different techniques for making them, and a plethora of uses, both mundane and unexpected during the past century or so. Interspersed throughout the narrative are short essays from other vintage linen aficionados describing their personal memories associated with kitchen linens. There are also some gorgeous colour photographs that made me want to run out to the nearest thrift or antique shop to see what I could find.
The book was a delight, and I recommend it to lovers of all things vintage and culinary, and also fiber lovers, including knitters (like me), crocheters, and sewers.
There are some good things in this book - it is replete with vintage linens to some extent, and there are some good informational pages in relation to how to identify different types of vintage linens. There's also a single-use reproduction vintage pattern sheet in the back, which is a nice inclusion. Peppered throughout the book are accounts of other women and how linens connected them to their families and past.
However, I found the book incredibly frustrating. First of all, whoever did the layout really needs to go back to school - there are constantly instances throughout the book where you're reading something from the author's hand, which is then interrupted mid-sentence with a one or two-page spread by someone else, only to continue - again mid-sentence of course - several pages later. Since the book is written almost like a long essay, this becomes almost infuriatingly interruptive.
What I found equally annoying is the author's constant referral to a plethora of parties she hosts and attends - ranging from the informal get-togethers with friends to what, by her accounts, are occasions/events of high-society hobnobbing - yet there are no pictures of them anywhere in the book! Not a single picture of the author attending or hosting a party where one could actually see the supposed juxtaposition of linens she keeps claiming are her specialty.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I purchase EllyAnne Giesel's other book at the same time I purchased this one. I was dissappointed because it is more the history of the linens not a how to make them and what to... Read morePublished 13 months ago by Judy Lee