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Here I would love to share with you our travels and adventures as international mushroom consultants. MEMOIRS about husband Pieter Vedder, who was a SCIENTIFIC PIONEER in Mushroom Cultivation Education. His practical handbook is in 8 languages and is called the MUSHROOM BIBLE: https://mariettesbacktobasics.blogspot.com/2020/08/modern-mushroom-growing-2020-harvesting.html

Monday, September 12, 2011

{Eco Friendly White Linens}

Alchemy of sun, grass and wind. Drying and bleaching laundry ̶ called "grassing" ̶ was long a speciality of the Dutch countryside. The grass had to be clean, and the laundry had to be regularly moistened so that the drying would last several days in order to produce a brilliant white.
This bleaching of white linens I do recall too well, from when I was a little girl. Mom would use her galvanized watering can and I would tag along. All of a sudden this very hot summer I got the idea to repeat what Mom did back then. We had enough clean grass and plenty of sun...
My first Eco Friendly project. The cotton mattress cover got out to get bleached by the sun...
Napkins joined also in the eco friendly bleaching.
In THE BOOK OF FINE LINEN by FRANÇOISE DE BONNEVILLE you find on page 47 this painting from Pieter Bruegel (ca 1520-1569) in a detail from Flemish Market and Washhouse (Prado, Madrid).
This is the book and I can highly recommend this. A beautiful hardcover with glossy paper and a wealth of information. The Book of Fine Linen ←click it.
Another of my favorites is this book:
Household Traditions and
Simple Secrets from a French Grandmother


  1. Hallo mariette,
    das Bild von Breughel ist ja wunderbar, das kannte ich noch gar nicht. Wäsche bleichen geht bei uns nicht, weil wir keinen Rasen haben. Sitzen nicht deine Katzen dann auf den Tüchern? Wiski wäre da sofort drauf, was den Erfolg sicher beeinträchtigen würde. DieBücher sehen sehr interessant aus, das Leinen ist ja toll bestickt.
    Wünsche dir eine schöne Woche,

  2. Mariette. Très, très cool. I had never heard about that method of "bleaching" sheets. Wonderful, and so environment-friendly. Great read, merci. Veronique (French Girl in Seattle)

  3. I've never seen that before. I did know that the sun bleaches, but had never seem images of linen laid out on the lawn...very interesting!

  4. Non conosco questo metodo! Bellissimi quei libri...vorrei sfogliarli tutti!!!! Bacioni, Anna.

  5. Adoro i panni all'aria e al sole!Questa notizia non la conoscevo!Bello il quadro!Buona settimana Rosetta!

  6. What a wonderful post Mariette. My thoughts were immediately drawn to 19th century paintings of drying linen in the sun, but then, the 16th C. Bruegel says it all.

    It is a reminder of how costly and treasured fine linen has always been. Yours looks brilliantly white in the sun.


  7. But the sun bleach all my white clothes to a cream colour!:-( I keep my white blouse indoor to dry away from sun. Will it work with clothes? bleach it back to white with the grass, water and the sun?

    Interesting and a great Book! Have a good week ahead Mariette. Mei

  8. Very interesting work andnice book, I lake it!

    Nice week, kissses.

  9. Liebe Mariette,
    das Breughel-Gemälde ist wunderbar.
    Ich erinnere mich aber auch daran, dass früher die Wäsche immer auf der Wiese ausgebreitet wurde zum Bleichen.
    Ich liebe Linnen über alles. Leider wird es mehr und mehr in den Hintergrund gedrängt durch die modernen Fasern.
    Einen guten Start in die neue Woche wünscht Dir

  10. è una meraviglia !!!!!!!!!! tutto bello...un abbraccio lory

  11. what a fabulous eco friendly idea!! I remember loving the scent of air dried laundry and how my Grandmother would press her fine linen ... it all smelled fresh and great! ....I think of her when I smell freshly pressed linen.

    Thanks for sharing these great books , I will have to look for them in our Chapters book store..

    Wishing you a fabulous day , blessings, xo HHL

  12. Dearest Mariette,

    How brilliant is this idea! I bet everything is not only whiter, but it smells good to having dried in the sunshine! Lovely.

    Happy Monday to you,
    xo Catherine

  13. Een goede avond,
    Ja ...dit herinner ik mij ook nog heel goed dat de met name witte lakens op het gazon lagen te bleken in de zon !! Ze noemden dan ook vaak het gazon een bleekveld.
    Het boek lijkt mij prachtig !!!
    Een hele lieve..lieve groet van Elly.

  14. Ik leg regelmatig witte was met vlekjes erin (die er in de was niet uit willen gaan) 'op de bleek', wel niet direct op 't gras ivm mevrouw kat, maar bovenop de wasmolen. En dat werkt prima! Groetjes, Inge

  15. Dear Mariette,

    I love that we can learn something new ~ have never heard of grassing before.
    I often air pillows out in the bright sunlight and because I do not have a drier everything is dried out in the fresh air and sunlight, which I love.
    The books look wonderful and thanks for sharing and I will look out for them. Hope that you have a lovely week


  16. What a neat concept. I never heard of that. Sun and lemon juice I knew about but never the grass. It is so neat that you remember this activity with your mother.
    I love the painting.
    Love to you,

  17. Hello Mariette! We got back from North Carolina on Thursday night so I'm still catching up on my favorite blogs:)

    This is so true that the sun is the best source of bleach. How many times I threw a wet shirt down in the sun only to find all the color bleached out when it was dry! Those look like wonderful books you have!

  18. Beautiful Miss M! I've bleached linens in the sun for years...but I never knew that such a thing went on for centuries. Fabulous post!


  19. Liebe Mariette,
    davon hat meine Mutti auch oft erzählt. Sie hat das Bleichen als Kind noch erlebt. Und selbst heute ist es überaus wirkungsvoll, wenn man Flecke aus weißem Tuch haben will. Die Sonnne besitzt doch starke Kraft!
    Vieles ist leider in Vergessenheit geraten.
    Und einige Leute hätten weniger Angst vor Umwelt-Chemie in der Wiese als vor kleinen Tierchen, wie Zecken & Co. ;-)

    Liebe Grüße


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