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How to make ladies' handkerchiefs

Handkerchiefs have been part of human culture since ancient Roman times, but they are not seen as often as they were before paper tissues entered the market in the 1930s. Handkerchiefs are, however, still used by some people and for some occasions. You can save money on handkerchiefs by making ladies' handkerchiefs at home. You can use scraps of fabric to make them, or you can recycle used garments by cutting out the handkerchiefs and adding some trim to decorate the edges.

Sew around the edges of the handkerchief making a tight, short zigzag or blanket stitch. This will prevent fraying, and it will be hidden later when you add the lace.

Measure 1/4 inch in from the edge and fold the edge over 1/4 inch. Do two parallel sides, then measure, fold and iron the other two parallel sides. The corners can be overlapped. No special fold is needed because the lace will cover them.

Pin the lace to the folded edge. Position the lace so it covers the folded edge and overlap the lace ends.

Sew the lace to the handkerchief's folded edge 1/16 inch from the raw edge of the lace. Remove the pins and flip the handkerchief over. Sew around the handkerchief again, making a second line of topstitching 1/16 inch from the fold.

Things You'll Need

  • 1 12-inch fabric square
  • Sewing machine
  • Seam gauge
  • Iron
  • Straight pins
  • Lace, 4 feet long, one inch wide
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About the Author

Laure Justice is a professional copywriter, since 2008. Justice has a broad-based business education, holding an AA in business administration and a Bachelor of Arts in management, plus certifications in accounting and international trade. She has written for GMC, Bounty Paper Towels, Purina's Petcentric, Colgate, Type F, Kudzu, eHow and many others.