5 Ways to Use Old Handkerchiefs

4 handkerchiefs

Ladies vintage handkerchiefs are such beautiful little treasures.

My mom had a bunch of the little pretties just lying in the back of a drawer. We pulled them out and admired each of them, one by one. She remembered where she got some of them, some she can’t remember. Her and I came up with these ways to get them out of the back of the drawer and to use them.

  • Use the hankies just as my mom and I did by reminiscing with them. Look at the prints, how much wear they have, and when your loved one might have used it.
  • Use it in a memory box or a shadow box. Add a special hankie, perhaps a monogrammed one, that your older family member used. Use it to reminisce.
  • Use it as a sachet. Add your favorite potpourri to the center of the inside of the hankie and tie it up with a pretty ribbon. You can then use it in a drawer or set one near your loved one (where they usually sit), so they can smell the fragrance and admire the beauty of it throughout the day.
  • Use it to make a small decorative pillow. Sew two hankies together to form a pillow. Leave an opening and then stuff it gently. Or you can hand stitch the hankies onto a small pillow form, one onto the front and one onto the back.
  • Display the beauties by hanging them on hooks, using them as doilies and setting things on, or framing them.

Ladies Handkerchiefs



  • Use care when working with this older material. My mothers were clean, but wrinkled, so we had to use care in ironing them. We also used much care in sewing them onto the pillow form.
  • If you do not have old hankies consider visiting an antique store. I bought one for $1.25 on my last visit.
  • Consider tagging some of your family members most treasured handkerchiefs such as one that might have been carried down the aisle on her wedding day. See Tips for tagging family heirlooms.


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