Wednesday, July 29, 2009
These are not any tea towels to hang over the stove handle at the end of the evening. I am afraid they could be overlooked in the kitchen of the person who bought these from a local woman in Louisiana, though the consumer would know how precious they were when they paid for them. Others might find them rather boring and average in appearance, maybe.
They are the result of weeks of work in the Arcadian Louisiana back country by Gladys LeBlanc Clark who grew, carded, and spun the cotton before weaving these towels. Cotton weaves enjoyed a long tradition in the South safely handed down from generation to generation until the Works Progress Administration, in attempting to combat the Great Depression, industrialized this textile form, leading to the near complete extinction of handwork l'amour de maman today. Commerically cultivated cottons are white in color. The brown fiber above is not dyed, instead it is the result of heritage brown cotton seeds carried over from year to year and generation to generation. And not unlike the handwork which appears here, it is very nearly extinct.
What I would not pay to own a part of that history if it meant I could help to propel it forward once again.
For many reasons, it pays to truly consider the smallest appointments in a gracious home.
Credit: By Southern Hands, Jan Arnow
Housekeeping note: Enter the Taste, Acquiring What Money Can't Buy reader giveaway here, and the ChillinJoy Portable Insulated Wine Cooler giveaway here.