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Exquisite wedding, bridal handkerchief features a beautiful lace floral design
Vintage Brussels "Duchesse" Lace
Early 1900's antique hanky
Measures 11 1/2" square
Linen Lawn
Laundered and pressed
In pristine condition


No shipping fee on this hanky when purchased with another listing (for which shipping is paid).

The charm of hankies …
Hankies are a passion for me and I’ve been collecting them for as long as I can remember. Most of the hankies I am offering at Gypsy Feather came from the estates of kind and gentle “proper ladies” I knew before they passed on in their 80’s and 90’s. I have fond memories of watching these women, friends and relatives, and their (what I call) hankie habits. These sweet little ladies were never caught without a cotton or linen hankie close at hand, usually tucked up their sleeve (they always wore long sleeves since "modern day new-fangled" AC was just too much for them) or into their bra if they were wearing a low or v-neck that would allow easy, discrete access. Day to day hankies were typically a colorful floral, or sometimes initialed, or maybe a simple ivory with perhaps a little lace trim. The more elaborate hankies were exquisitely lace trimmed, many times with beautiful cut-work, passed down from previous generations and carried on one’s wedding day and for special occasions or church. Except for weddings, in our day and age disposable Kleenix has become the rule … no one wants to take the time to launder and iron a pretty handkerchief to carry. What a crying shame.


A little on handkerchief history, the following are excerpts taken from " Les Textiles, Histoires et Travail by M. and E. Theodore Isle of Man Family History Society Journal Vol 10, No 4, Nov 1988:

“More general versions of the handkerchief have been valued since Roman times for their utilitarian functions, but the pocket-handkerchief was created solely as a symbol of beauty and status. The pocket-handkerchief made its properly genteel debut during a promenade in a public garden, where its creator, an unnamed Venetian aristocrat lady, displayed her handiwork to a crowd of admirers.

Word of the comely cloth then traveled across Italy to France, where the expensive, embroidered handkerchief found great favor with the noblemen and women in the court of Henry II. By 1850, the handkerchief was an omnipresent accessory of the German upper crust as well.

But it was Marie Antoinette who made history one day at Versailles, when she noted that the square handkerchief was the most attractive and practical variety. Louis XVI then issued a mandate throughout the kingdom that all handkerchiefs must emulate a square shape. Thus, the handkerchief as we now know it was born, and still survives today.

When explaining the handkerchief's rightful and reverent place in weddings, it is important to allude to their high-society history, but it is even more necessary to mention that handkerchiefs are also traditionally associated with love. During medieval times, hankies were given to knights by ladies to wear during tournaments as a good luck token. To bring victory in battle and signify her support, a lady might give an embroidered handkerchief to knight of her liking, or to someone who asked for the honor of wearing her favor.”

A huge thank you to Lizzy Bowen of lizzylovesvintage for including my hankie in her gorgeous wedding treasury, "The vintage lace wedding": http://www.etsy.com/treasury/MTU0MDYzNDh8MjcyMzUxOTA1Mg/the-vintage-lace-wedding?index=0

For more vintage hankies: http://www.etsy.com/shop/GypsyFeather?section_id=5670447

My store: http://www.etsy.com/shop/GypsyFeather

Vintage Brussels "Duchesse" Lace Wedding Handkerchief, Hanky, Hankie ... Early 1900's ... SALE ... TREASURY ITEM


  • Vintage item from the 1910s
  • Material: linen lawn
  • Ships worldwide from United States
  • Feedback: 2423 reviews
  • Favorited by: 19 people