Linen-Natural and Strong
Linen is one of my favourite fabrics. A natural fiber made from flax that breathes well, is really strong and is produced more sustainable than cotton. The strength of this fabric means an investment in linen for your home should last a lifetime. Flax fabric strength increases about 20% when wet, making it even stronger when being washed, resulting in greater longevity than most other home fabrics.
Virtues of Linen
Linen is virtually lint free and non-static, an excellent quality for table ware and for clothing.
How To Care For Linen
Proper care of linen is easier than many think. In a perfect world, we'd hand wash and line dry our linens (and all fabrics for that matter)but in real life we don't always have the space or time.
Your linen tablecloths, napkins and even clothes can be washed in a washing machine on the cool water setting. Do not use bleach or whitening agents unless you have a stubborn stain as bleach will weaken fabric over time. On the up side, the more you wash your linen items, the softer they will become over time! That is linen's biggest charm, the older it gets, the more it is loved.
I consider my tablecloths wash-and-wear and have even used them as a picnic blanket on our lakefront deck and grassy areas.
As for drying, line drying is wonderful and ideal but not always practical. Linen is can be put in your dryer and dried until damp-dry. Then hang clothes or spread your tablecloth over your table to finish drying. While you can iron linen, most agree that part of linen's charm is the wabi sabi, gently wrinkly texture. If you choose to iron your linen, it is by far best to do while it is still a bit damp.
Setting Your Table With Linen
Setting your table with linens isn't fussy. The naturally soft and lightly wrinkled texture can be dressed up or down. Try layering a few colors or layering monochromatic items. Linen has an old world look that goes naturally with vintage silver. Use your collected silverware or pick up a few vintage serving pieces and candlesticks. As a neutral backdrop, add in simple tumblers or have fun with your grandmothers crystal. Use your modern plates or a fun mix of vintage.
We'd love to see your ideas in the comments below of how you dress your linen table!
Have a great day, Friends!
PS. Here are some of our favourite table top items available in our online shop.