Beautiful show towel worked on linen with silk thread dating from the 1820 to 1840 period displaying intricate early drawn-work / tatting. Show towels are usually much longer than this example as they were hung over the kitchen door. The raw edged top and bottom may give us a clue that part of the towel is missing and what remains is a section. These towels usually have an openwork feature that runs horizontally as does the decorative motifs to add respite to the design. The right and left sides seem to be comprised of a salvaged edge.
The stitching is unsurpassed and the floral elements are just amazing sporting a soft shamrock green with highlights of avocado along with warm beige. Some of the flowers bless us with a buttercup yellow hue that dot the center. It is if the flowers are literally saying “Hello” and greeting you in person!
Something else worth mentioning is the area referring to the openwork that was stitched in brown silk compared to the rest of the piece as shown in image 14. I believe the Mennonite’s purposely created a “flaw” in their work because they felt only God was perfect. I can’t be certain this piece is attributed to the Mennonites but there is a clue that may suggest this to be true.
A series of double crosses (possibly signifying a pendant) done in triplicate at the bottom held fast by a worked (chain) may symbolize the holy trinity therefore this piece may portray religious connotations incorporated by the maker.
There are no holes to report and as far as I can tell all the stitches are accounted for. An area of light toning is present as shown in images 20, 21 & 22 but the overall appearance is still wonderful. I can’t stress enough the magnificent detail that was worked into this exquisite piece. This lovely textile would make a grand statement either displayed on a towel holder (as shown) or can also appropriately be draped over a kitchen door. Enjoy!
Towel measures 24 3/4” tall and measures 16” across.
~Freight (Standard Mail) included, however Insurance is optional and can be purchased @ checkout ~ within the continental U.S.