(A popular “Parlor” song from 1884 – see below)
(Edging # 8834 from the Tatters Treasure Chest – Dover Publications)
In honor of Month of May, and also Mother’s Day, I’m showing my Victorian ‘handkerchief’ doll, which I created back in 1992, after I saw a McCall’s pattern for making dinner napkins into Victorian dolls
I thought the idea would also work with handkerchiefs which otherwise would be stored out of sight in linen closets
Of course, two handkerchiefs with tatted edging are ideal!
The two handkerchiefs used for the doll can be completely ‘untied’ and used again as handkerchiefs. No sewing or cutting is involved. As I recall, I used size 30 DMC ecru thread for the tatting.
I’m going on memory here, as far as the instructions. The basic idea is to take a Styrofoam cone and cover it with plain fabric, providing an underskirt. A thin dowel rod is stuck into the top of the cone so that the upper body and head are supported
The lower handkerchief (put on first) is draped over the cone, showing off the tatted lace to best advantage.
The upper handkerchief forms the head, sleeves and upper ‘apron’. This particular handkerchief has a simple chain edging, and an appliqué in one corner, which becomes the ‘apron’ of the skirt. The head is formed over some cotton batting, and a ribbon is tied at the neck. She also has a piece of scrap tatting for a ‘collar’. The puffy sleeves also have quilt batting, and the ends are tied in a knot to form ‘hands’. The handkerchief is also tied with a ribbon at the ‘waist’
Here is a the back of the doll. Her hair is ‘tacked’ onto the top of her head with some small stitches. and her hat is a very small doily stiffened into a hat shape, using the same lace edging as that on the lower handkerchief
The parasol is basically rings and chains and is topped with the same lace used on the bottom handkerchief and hat.
I’ll feature the parasol on another post
The basket is from Rebecca Jones’ book, and I’ll also feature it on another post
She’s sure carrying a lot of stuff !!!
Imagine what you could do with all those handkerchiefs stored hidden away. The dolls would make great gifts and wonderful curio keepsakes
Here’s some information about the song
You can check the website www.geocities.com/holidaysfun/strollpark.html to hear this melody and see the lyrics. You might even do a little “soft shoe” tap dance!
Younger folks may not be aware of this quaint 1880’s Victorian parlor song (although the original title was “The Fountain in the Park”) , as that kind of music (sadly) doesn’t seem to be popular anymore. This is one of those ditties which remained a staple in most barbershop quartet repertoires and in family sing-alongs
Because of my interest in Victorian things and in playing music, I find it to be a charming reminder of a more ‘innocent’ time, when “June, croon, tune, honeymoon and spoon” were popular rhyming words
Although the author of the song is listed as “Ed Haley”, further research on the amazing web indicates that the actual writer of the song is a fellow named Robert Keiser (1862-1932) , also known as Robert King. For whatever reason, he wrote music under several different pseudonyms, even using women’s names! Ohio’s theme song “Beautiful Ohio”, was published under the name “Mary Earl” but the writer was actually Robert Keiser/King again. (Go figure!)
I hope you all have a Happy Mother’s Day! Although I’m not a mother myself, I’ve enjoyed my role as “Aunt Kathy” to several nieces and nephews, ranging in age from 48 to 18. However, being an aunt is definitely easier than being a mother! My hat is off to all of you who have children! You deserve to have a special day! I’ll fondly be remembering my own wonderful mother, and other older women in my life who were mentors and friends, especially those who shared my love of needlecrafts.