Luxury Life | The Passionate Pursuit of Linen


Beautiful and functional. Antique linens, embroidered, monogrammed or plain, bring a gracious note to our homes. Like many of you, I am an avid collector of antique linens. I can fall into a misty eyed swoon over tiny precise stitching, a beautifully executed monogram, making my children roll their eyes and wonder if I have fallen off the edge. {not sure what edge, but they wonder!}


The joys of collecting antique linens are many. Collecting exceptional linens, using them in our home, connect us with the women in the past, those that developed such artistry and skill with needle and tread.


Fun Fact | Catherine de Medicis came to Marseille in 1533 at the age of fourteen to marry Henry II, the crown prince of France. Until she arrived at court from Florence, Italy, dining was not quite civilized. Catherine is famous {amongst many other things, mainly being the mother of three kings, the most notorious Henry III} for introducing the fork, but also the napkin to her extravagant French banquets and court.

Before Catherine introduced napkins, tables {royals only, of course!} were set with long, sweeping cloths called longière’s, the sides of which were used as built in napkins.


Artfully embroidered linens wrap your home in refinement. Used daily or for special occasions and holidays, antique linens well cared for will appreciate in value. They are a beautiful, cherished heirloom for future generations in your family.



Gossamer fine, these organdy mats were hand embroidered and appliquéd on the island of Madeira. The softest apricot color, the embroidery skills of these needlewomen is world renowned.




An heirloom antique embroidered handkerchief is a beautiful bride’s “Something Old” or “Something borrowed”. This one, an antique Belgian Princess Lace confection, is the most beautiful example of this hand work I’ve ever seen.



Antique pillow cases make your bed a dream. These are hand embroidered with tiny, precise stitching done long ago by experienced needlewomen.



Always a treat, antique monogrammed French napkins are perfect for every day or special days. Linen napkins make every table look elegant and chic. I am unpacking crates filled with the most exceptional linens, hand embroidered, antique heirloom pillow cases, table cloths, napkins and more! Just in time to grace your tables for autumn, and the upcoming holiday season. You can see our recently added antique linens here, please check back as there are quite a few that have just had their glamor shots taken, and will be added in the up coming days and weeks.

To learn more, please visit my other blog posts about antique linens:

You can learn about Appenzell Embroidery


About their country cousins here : Collecting Antique French Linens

And this post has some of my Tips for Snowy White Linens




Do you share my passion for antique linens? Be sure to sign up to follow my blog in the right hand corner so you don’t miss a single post!

Shop for the best in French Antiques, furniture with the patina of age, vintage accessories to delight you and your family & friends, and French Country utilitarian pieces. Treasures that make your home fresh, beautiful, inspirational and uniquely yours. Visit our shop

7 Responses to Luxury Life | The Passionate Pursuit of Linen

  1. This is such an interesting post! Imagine using the sides of the tablecloth as a napkin! That Catherine was a smart cookie!

    Your antique linens are simply gorgeous. I find it hard to pass up embroidered pillow cases and anything with lace (although I’ve let go of that a bit). I’ll be sure to stop by your shop soon, Lidy.

    Jane x

  2. Catherine WAS a smart cookie, Jane, in more ways than one. It’s rumored that it was SHE who actually made many decisions for her sons on the throne.

  3. Amazing! I cherish the antique linens I’ve bought from FGH. Best quality, often, before I found you, I would order antique linens from other sites and be so disappointed. FrenchGardenHouse never disappoints me. Thank you.

  4. I, too, have a love for linens. I have bought some in England, Scotland, Belgium, South Africa, and the Ukraine. Thanks for all of the beautiful pictures. Love them!

Leave a reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.