There was a time, believe it or not, when we didn't have disposable tissues (which we invariably call Kleenex regardless of the brand). All those jobs that tissues do now the handkerchief used to do. And that's why your grandparents always carried one.
But now that you do have easy
access to a variety of tissues, you can use your handkerchief for
more than cleaning a child's face, mopping your brow, or blowing your
nose. In fact, handkerchiefs have found their modern calling mostly
in the area of arts and crafts, gifts and adornments – especially
beautifully embroidered, lacy vintage handkerchiefs.
be used for easy DIY projects to make gifts for friends or family.
You can also use them to make adorable wedding and baby-shower
favors. And, of course, handkerchiefs lend themselves admirably to
the making of holiday decorations. Really, you are limited only by
your imagination and creativity – and it's not as difficult as you
Let's take a look at a few
things you can do with handkerchiefs . . .
you or someone you know has a special wedding handkerchief, it can be
fun to make the hanky into a baby bonnet. This project doesn't
require any cutting, so you can actually take the bonnet apart to use
it as a handkerchief again someday."
you have a vintage hanky that is too fragile to use for sewing
crafts, you can create a display in a shadow box. This can also be a
fun handkerchief craft for special wedding or graduation hankies."
3. Vintage Hankie Pillow Cover – "It’s a sweet and simple project you can create in time for valentines day. This would even be a
great project for a beginner or for a child
who’s fairly comfortable using a sewing machine. I
thought of these pillows one day after I saw some of my vintage
hankies. Their colors were perfect for valentines day, and I thought
they would add a little bit of character to an empty chair or sofa."
don't know about you, but I am always reaching for tissues in the
car. Having a 4 year old doesn't help. There is always something
spilling or some kind of mess happening. Tissue boxes are so ugly. I
decided to make something pretty."
– "Need a place to put all of those sewing needles? These pin
cushions made out of ladies handkerchiefs are absolutely adorable and
functional at the same time!. . . [T]hese pin cushions can be made in
there's even more . . .
The Second Line Parade
Handkerchiefs have also found
a special use in that unique New Orleans way – a city like no
other. And that is in the second line parade.
As you know, people everywhere
and in every culture have always had rituals and rites to celebrate
and commemorate the major events and passages of life –
particularly birth, marriage, and death. That's what the New
Orleans-flavored second line parade is.
Second line parades are the
direct descendants of New Orleans' famous jazz funerals, which
included a casket, a host of mourners, and a band. Today, there "are
dozens of different second line parades put on throughout the year,
usually on Sunday afternoons, and held in the French Quarter and
neighborhoods all across the city. They range in size, level of
organization and traditions, but in all cases they will include a
brass band, jubilant dancing in the street and members decked out in
a wardrobe of brightly colored suits, sashes, hats and bonnets,
parasols and banners, melding the pomp of a courtly function and the
spontaneous energy of a block party, albeit one that moves a block at
a time" (FrenchQuarter.com).
And today, especially for wedding second lines, revelers carry white handkerchiefs (often specially embroidered for the occasion) that they wave as they dance and process.
The term "second line" is used to refer to the revelers and participants who aren't the principals in the event, but join in to help celebrate and carry the jubilation and excitement forward. For a funeral, for example, the family members of the deceased and for a wedding, the main wedding party would form what is known as the "first line." "[T]hose who follow along, dancing and singing as they go, form what is known as the 'second line.' Second lining can also refer to the type of dancing that usually goes on at these parades – a wild, strutting dance step to carry participants forward in pace with the brass band – so one can go to a second line, be in a second line and do the second line all at once" (FrenchQuarter.com).
Originally, second line
parades were primarily a kind of funeral procession. Jazz funerals
have been a big part of New Orleans culture for a long time, and the
second line phenomenon grew out of that. A funeral second line
usually consists of the hearse moving from the funeral to the burial
service, the guests and participants (both first line and second
line), and a jazz band. The idea is to celebrate the life of the
Today, however, second line
parades are more commonly a wedding phenomenon, celebrating in a
formal and peculiarly New Orleans way the beginning of the couple's
new life together. "Usually, the second line brings the guests
and bridal party from the ceremony to the reception. The newlyweds
lead the procession, umbrellas in hand, while the wedding party and
guests follow the band with handkerchiefs" (FrenchQuarter.com).
So leading the procession is
the first line – typically the band and the ones being honored, the
bride and groom. The just-married couple usually head the procession
carrying decorated umbrellas or parasols. Following the couple and
the band (and often the other main players in the wedding party) are
the guests and, really, anyone else who wants to join in. These make
up the second line, usually dancing, strutting, and waving
Read the full story of the
second line parade in "The
Second Line Parade – The Cultural Exuberance of New Orleans Going
The Mardi Gras Penalty Flag
Sean Gautreaux came up with
this year's trend in Mardi Gras throws – you know, the beads,
medallions, and so on thrown out to the crowds from the floats. It
happened like this . . .
It happened (or, rather didn't
happen) on Sunday, January 20, 2019, in a game that could have –
should have – sent the New Orleans Saints to the Super Bowl. It was
that most famous (or infamous) of all pass-interference penalties
that wasn't called.
Gautreaux thought yellow penalty flag throws would be the perfect way
to laugh in the face of that football tragedy, to give it an ironic
twist and wring out a little humor. He set to work making Mardi Gras
penalty flag throws that would take place of the penalty flag never
thrown in the game. Saints fans are, after all, mighty loyal.
referee flags were thrown in several of the parades – for example,
Krewe of Endymion, Krewe of Alla, Krewe of Muses, Krewe D'Etat, Krewe
of Bacchus, Legion of Mars, Krewe of Eve, Krewe of Bonnepart
(Lafayette, LA), and more. And how big was this thing really?
Gautreaux delivered 400 flags to a krewe on a single day – and that
was only a fraction of the total number.
the people who came back from Hurricane Katrina could survive a
football catastrophe. And they did it with a humorous ironic twist.
There may lie ahead a long Super Bowl Lent (at least a year long) for
the Saints and fans, but at least it was kicked off with a big Mardi
Gras penalty flag party. "A laugh" – that's the healthy
way to deal with it, Gautreaux said.
out the full story in "Overcoming
Tragedy in New Orleans . . . Again – Mardi Gras Penalty Flag
Wholesale For Everyone –
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