Author: EllynAnne Geisel

Reviewed By: Melinda Cianos

I think lack-luster mealtime is an epidemic in this country, or maybe it’s just my house. Mulling over past dining experiences I can remember very few that were notable, short of Thanksgiving. Not like the days of old when care was taken to set a table, not just with the necessities: forks and knives and plates…but with mood-setting linens covering the table and something other than Brawny paper towels to dab the corners of your mouth (it is simply not enough that they come in some very delightful patterns).

A collector of vintage cloth: “the textiles our mothers and grandmothers crafted for both daily comfort and enduring legacy,” author EllynAnne Geisel celebrates the art of homemaking and sounds the timely plea to “Go Vintage, Go Green!” Geisel opens her virtual “trunk” of linen treasures and shares them with us: crash linens, damask, and twill—just to name a few—classically plain or featuring embroidered, embossed or appliquéd patterns. While the main focus of The Kitchens Linens Book is, well, kitchen linens, there are so many other helpful and enlightening tidbits on its pages: recipes, how to pack a picnic basket, removing candle wax from cloth…

Geisel has woven together some history with a bit of nostalgia and bold threads of hosting and homemaking savvy, and gifted the reader with a charming tribute to the fabrics that drape over, and color, our lives. Domestic tranquility is handsomely displayed over its 139 glossy pages and is a visual treat for both the vintage cloth expert and those of us who really had no idea.

Originally Published on

Anne Holmes Boomer-in-Chief of NABBW
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