Vintage textiles and family heirlooms

Over the last year, I have been doing a lot of family history research.  I’ve been lucky in that first my Aunt, then my parents and my brother, have built up a huge family tree and I’ve been adding to it and looking into it more.  I have also been given various family treasures by family members over the years and I decided recently to photograph them and put them all together rather than scattered all over the house!

I’d love to find out more about this handkerchief.  It was given to my Nan by my Grandad during the Second World War.  I think it is silk, but the edges have been cut in a scallop pattern and outlined in pen, and the heart decoration is a sort of raised embellishment.  The writing is also in pen and there is no stitching on it at all.  Apparently while my Grandad was in the army, one of the things he was involved in was running a prisoner of war camp so I wonder if this was made by one of the prisoners?

world war 2 belgian handkerchief

My Nan wore this hat at my parents’ wedding in 1959. 

1950s flower hat

My Mum’s cousin (who was a lot younger than her because she was the daughter of my Grandad’s oldest brother… I had to look that up on the family tree!) was a house servant when she was young and she gave me her maid’s uniform – this is the cap and one of the cuffs she wore.  I’ve got the apron and collar as well but the apron is too rumpled to photograph at present and I don’t want to risk it picking up all the gunk on the iron (wonder how that got there?!).

maid's head dress early 20th century

maid's cuff

I took this photo the other day of the reflection on our bedroom ceiling and thought it fitted in well with a post about vintage textiles.  Doesn’t it look lacy?  (I think that is a reflection on the state of the windows but the less said about that the better.).

lacy ceiling reflections

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2 Responses to Vintage textiles and family heirlooms

  1. Gill 13th February 2010 at 6:13 pm #

    Good to hear from you Liz – isn’t all that family stuff compelling? Wouldn’t it be great to know the stories behind the facts?
    .-= Gill´s last blog ..Inspiring =-.

  2. Sheila 15th February 2010 at 10:53 pm #

    What wonderful family treasures! It’s one thing to hear the stories, know the fact, but entirely another to hold in your hand something an ancestor owned or wore. The maid’s uniform – priceless! One of my most exciting moments in my own family research was running across a passage in my mother’s diary telling about a locket dad had given her. I have that locket! But had never heard from mom the story behind it.
    .-= Sheila´s last blog ..Breaking a Block =-.