Tuesday, October 14, 2014

A Mended Hanky

Hankies get ragged pretty fast around here, seeing as most of them start out vintage already and some people approach this life as a vale of tears (someone small sobbed all through breakfast this morning - oh my).  When the hankies start to look shredded, I remove them from the drawers and stash them in a dark corner of a shelf.  They've got such interesting colors and pretty patterns that I want to use them somehow in the future - I have several ideas on my Pinterest boards.

But for some reason, I wanted to mend this hanky and keep using it.

 It's a plain white cotton one, so I used soft blue-grey striped cotton and pale yellow perle cotton.  I enjoyed myself.  I thought maybe I wanted to add just a little something more to the mending job. . . maybe a running stitch on the edge. . . green leaves and a stem to the yellow starbursts. . . . But I couldn't decide.  So I stopped, based on the mantra that a dear sister at church explained:  when she's deciding something, she moves from clarity to clarity.  If she doesn't have clarity, she doesn't move.

I'm sure most people would apply this idea to much larger decisions, but I have found it incredibly helpful in the dozens of decisions in my path every day.

I saw a cast-iron skillet this weekend and I thought of buying it, but I didn't have clarity, so I didn't.  I wanted to try spiritual direction, but after two sessions, I have only murkiness, not clarity, about continuing, so I'm not going to.

Sometimes the murkiness only means "wait" and then the decision comes into sharp focus with a little more time.  This process has brought me such peace in large and small decisions, including, yes, whether or not I am "done" with the design of my mended hanky.


  1. Oh, you and your patches - I love them!! I have to learn an appealing patching technique for living room furniture covers. I'm waiting for clarity.

  2. It's a Hanky Sermon!!! (Much better than the one my grandfather used to do about women keeping their heads covered. He'd use his fist as the head and cover it with a hanky, or so says my mom.)

  3. Such a lovely insight; thanks for sharing. Wonderful patch! I use hankies all the time.

  4. What a wonderful post. I so enjoyed it. Your mended hankie is just beautiful..[you have made me want to get my dreaded mending out ,and do it.].
    Clarity... I will remember this.. thank you for sharing.

  5. A little hanky tip I just came across in a 1940 homemaking guide: Are the, er, contents of your hankies hard to remove in the wash, especially during cold/flu season? Pre-soak in salt water!

    My high-efficiency machine does a very feeble job on the fellas' bandannas, specifically. I'm going to try this tip for sure.

    -Clara's mom

  6. A delightful mending job! And an equally delightful life tip. I think you are correct that clarity usually comes into sharp focus, given some time.

  7. LOL - "A Hanky Sermon" -that's perfect! Thank you so much for this little bit of wisdom. I've been needing clarity and only getting murky: I forget to wait!

  8. I love so much! The spiritual practice and the end result of the hankie. *smile*


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