How To Keep Linen In Order The Sewing of Buttons - Tapes and Loops - Uses of Old Linen earl buttons are very easily sewn on, but P they are not very much used for household things, as they are too apt to be broken in mangling.
The needle and cotton is just passed through the pierced holes of the button three or four times to form either a cross or a straight bar. The fastening off is done in the same way as for linen buttons.
To Sew a Tape on a Pillow-slip
Cut a piece of tape the required width and length, and hem one end neatly with a very narrow hem. Turn up about a quarter of an inch at the raw end of the tape, and place to the line of the hemming on the wrong side. Fell down the tape on each side for rather less than half an inch and to the edge of the hem, taking these last stitches through to the right side to prevent the strain of the tape coming solely on the hem. Turn the tape back, crease it firmly where it meets the under side of the hem, and seam the two together. Turn over the tape, and flatten the work with a thimble. Slip the needle between the folds of the hem, and cut off the cotton.
Attached in this way to the inner edge of the hem, all tapes can be pushed out of sight when the pillow-slip is in use.
To Put a Loop on a Towel
This is very useful and necessary for any towel that has to be hung up on a hook or nail.
First cut a piece of tape a suitable length for a loop, and make a mark across the middle of the length. Sew one side of the two selvedges together for about an inch, beginning at the cut ends. Fasten off securely, and flatten out the join with the thumb. Then turn in about a quarter of an inch of the raw edges, and the loop is ready to sew on. A loop must always be sewn on to some double part, such as the hem of a towel. Make a crease on the wrong side of the hem of the towel where the loop is required, place the line of sewing on the loop to this crease, and pin or tack in position. Fell round the three sides, keeping the corners very even, and be careful when felling over the hem that every stitch comes through to the right side, otherwise the strain of the loop would come upon the stitches of the hem. Turn the loop back, crease it where it meets the outside edge of the hem of the material, and seam together. Turn up the loop again, and flatten the last seam with the thumb. Slip the needle between the folds of the material, and cut off the cotton.
Sheets usually show the first signs of wear in the middle, and as soon as any thinness is noticeable they should be turned with the sides to the middle. This is effected by cutting the sheets down the centre and sewing the two sides neatly together, thus making a seam down the middle of the sheet, and re-hem the side edges. By this means the time of wear may be considerably lengthened, and the sheet, although not so elegant, will look quite neat.
If there are children in the house, the larger sheets, when worn, may be cut down to make sheets for small beds or cots; in fact, for this purpose the worn sheeting is almost to be preferred to new, as it is softer and more easily washed.
Old sheets are extremely useful as dust sheets when they are too shabby to be used on the beds, or pieces of them may be hemmed and used as covers for drawers or shelves, or as wrappers for fine linen or other things that are laid away.
Or, again, the best pieces of old sheets may be used to make underslips for pillows or bolsters to keep the ticking clean. It is not advisable to make outside pillow-slips or bolster-slips from worn linen, as the wear would be so short that the work of making would not be repaid.
When large tablecloths become worn round the edges they may be cut down to make smaller cloths, or the best portions may be turned to account for sideboard or tray cloths, fish d'oyleys, etc., and will be found quite good enough for ordinary purposes.
Fine bedroom towels, when too old and shabby to serve their original purpose, can be utilised as housemaids' cloths for wiping the toilet service. The coarser towels, when worn, will serve as kitchen and house rubbers, and the remains of huckaback towels make excellent dishcloths.
Old Linen for Bandages
Real linen should never be thrown away. When unfit for other uses, it should be carefully washed and preserved for bandages, for which purpose it is invaluable.
Hospitals and dispensaries are always glad to receive a parcel of old linen.
Many other purposes for the utilisation of old linen will suggest themselves to a thoughtful housekeeper, and she will take care to procure the best she can afford, and to obtain the utmost wear out of her possessions.