I am posting this again; several people have asked about it!
These linens are still available today, thanks to websites like Ebay and Etsy!
Her favorite maker was a Portugese company called “Marghab” from the island of Madeira. They had “separate boutiques” in the top department stores in the United States.
In fact; they were the very first company of any kind to have their products showcased in that way.
The company produced linens from 1932 until 1978.
Emile Marghab and his wife, Vera Way Marghab founded the company. The beautiful designs and attention to meticulous detail came from his
American wife, Vera. She grew up in South Dakota.
There is a wonderful book, “Perfection Never Less” written about her; and there is a rotating museum exhibition and more information at the University of South Dakota.
Hers is a fascinating story!
Here is a quotation from “Cynthia’s Linen Room” on line.
The quality of the linens was unmatched. Linens especially made in Ireland were used, threads from France and England,
and the Swiss produced the exquisite almost sheer “Margandie” which was exclusive to the company.
The island of Madeira was the source of the best embroidery in the world.
And Marghab was the best of the best.
They made tablecloths, placemats, guest towels, in beautiful and imaginative patterns.
I started collecting “cocktail” napkins when I received 4 for a wedding present!
Thanks to ebay, I now have over a hundred! Most of them came in the original boxes,unused!!
People were “saving them” Oh Dear!!
So they showed up in their estate sales!
Don’t save things!!!
This design on “Margandie” the pattern is “Varishka”
This shows the tiny stitches used. Women would teach their daughters at an early age.
Here is a guest towel. HINT!!! If people won’t use your guest towels; just crinkle one! And then they will!!!
These hand towels also show the fine stitches.
Varishka in another color
tropical fish cocktail napkin.
This sailboat is a favorite!
This grape motif is on “Margandie”
This shows the difference between the Swiss “Margandie” and the Irish linen.
This was one of the four I received for a wedding present in 1969!
If carefully hand washed, and pressed upside-down on a terrycloth towel; these linens can last a lifetime!
“under the sea”
This is how the ladies of the island would carry their flowers!
This mallard is the kind of duck we have in our pond!
I love this weather vane!
Which do you think is the front? The top or the bottom of this napkin?
I think this really illustrates the incredible fineness of the stitching!
People throw the guest towels in the wastebaskets, the cocktail napkins, too!
And at least a dozen times, I have received one back in the mail because a husband has put it in his pocket!
I can’t tell you the pleasure I get from using these lovely creations, so beautifully made by hand!
There are so many of the small luxuries lost to “convenience”!
In case someone is interested; I received a note from the woman I quoted “Cynthia’s Linens
who is now selling Marghab and other fine linens as
“Christine Hamm and I sell vintage linens on Etsy. vintagelinens.etsy.com”