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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

Thursday, September 22, 2022

Our Variegated Blue Flax Lily + Video from Flaxseed to Linen from Horst my Birthplace

 Rather late I discovered that our Variegated Blue Flax Lily was blooming again.
We have this since 2014. 
On September 8, I captured these...
Such tiny lovely flowers!
That's the entire Variegated Blue Flax Lily on our patio, as a pot plant.
On September 19, they were still there... now they're gone.
You see the blue sky we have!
Having hailed from Horst, a region in the Province of Limburg, in the South of The Netherlands, there is quite a history about Flax and the Linen weavers.
Want to share this very interesting video with you.
From flaxseed to linen (Museum de Kantfabriek Horst) — the old Lace factory!
from flaxseed to linen
Horst (my birth place) around 1920
First, the land is made suitable for the cultivation of flax.
Sowing takes place at the beginning of April.
After a few days, the first flax seeds germinate.
The weeds are removed.
At the beginning of June, the flax is in bloom.
Harvesting can begin in mid-August.
With the rekel, the flax bulbs are removed.
The flax is placed underwater to let the soft parts rot away; called retting.
Dad used to have a piece of land at the Rotven. One of those former fens...
The flax bulbs are threshed from which linseed oil is extracted.
Part of the seed is used again for the next harvest.
After drying, the stems are roasted to remove the hard inner core.
By breaking, the hard inner core is broken; scutching.
After the harvest it's time for a party.
With the crank, the remaining wood residues are removed; hackling.
By hackling, only the best fibers remain.
In winter, the fibres are spun into flax yarn.
Finally, the yarns are washed to remove the lye.
After rinsing, the yarns are ready to weave into linen cloth.
By bleaching the linen in the sun, it gets a bright white color.
The linen is now ready for use.
In the meantime, it's spring again. High time to make the land suitable for a new harvest.
This program is composed on the basis of a film (1976) that was commissioned by the Antiquity–Room Horst

Nowadays linen is from Belgium, Ireland, Italy, Poland and of course in China...

But seeing how labor intensive it is—you might appreciate more your linen pieces!
At fashion school we learned how this was being created but the above video is far better for understanding...

Did any of you know this process?

Related link:
{Variegated Blue Flax Lily} | previous post by me with good closeup photo of flower
{Horst my Birth Place, Used to be an Old Linen Weavers Town} | previous post by me


  1. Amazing how we can make materials out of plants like flax and cotton. I enjoyed the video, Mariette. Thank you so much.

    God bless always.

    1. Dearest Victor,
      It sure is amazing and linen is known since biblical times—the Egyptians used it already.
      Now that is fascinating—who, way back figured out how to make cloth out of it?!

  2. Hi, Mariette and Pieter!
    I had NO idea that linen went trough all those processes, to be transformed in the beautiful clothes, tablecloths and napkins we see in the stores. I'm sure that today it's a more mechanized process, but you have to admire all the labor that went into it. People did work hard in the past.
    I think that when we know all the work behind an object or a piece of clothe, we give it more value and see that it is worth to pay for the quality invested in it.
    Before I go, I just wanted you to know that Nuno finally entered the transplant list! He was waiting for a second okay from the doctors and now he's on the 2 mandatory lists to receive a kidney.
    All that is left for us now, is to pray and wait.
    Have a wonderfull wekend, Mariette and Pieter!

    1. Dearest Paula & Nuno,
      First I reply to the positive news in regard to Nuno's donor kidney! Happy for you and indeed; prayers are in place.
      Linen is quite an art from tiny seed to cloth and even for the linseed oil!
      It does indeed change your mind about its price and value.
      We had to study this when at fashion school and I had no idea that all this went on before we held the cloth in our hands!
      Wish I'd seen that video back then but it was not even created and there were no videos yet...
      How times have changed—in many ways.
      Mariette and Pieter

    2. Thank you for your prayers, Mariette! You and Pieter are alwyas in our orayers, too!😘

    3. You are quite welcome—and thanks Paula & Nuno! 💞

  3. What a special plant, and a very pretty little blue lily. I love linen, and wear it almost exclusively in Summer. It breathes wonderfully in our hot climate, and lasts a very long time. As I sew a lot of my own clothes, I love to find a new linen piece every season.

    1. Dearest Patricia,
      Oh, it is a very special plant and when I spotted it, we did bring one home with us from Florida.
      We still have it and try to keep it alive. The blooming reward is only once annually but it is worth it.
      Sure it makes one understand the strength and durability of linen far better and also appreciate the price that comes with it.
      No, the sewing years are long behind me and due to never having gained any weight, I have plenty of good clothes from the Outlets still—they will serve me till the end.

  4. No doubt a dying art. Interesting

    1. Dearest Debby,
      Linen will never die, only shifts to countries with lower wages... but it is one of the best sustainable fibers!

  5. Una planta muy duradera, yo siento mucho, cuando una de mis plantas se seca.

    1. Querida Antónia,
      Este ha demostrado ser duradera.

  6. Querida Mariette, que bela postagem, eu sabia que é uma das plantas mais antigas, mas desconhecia o processo de criação e assisti o vídeo, maravilha!!! Também fui nos outros links, saber mais.
    Uma plantinha nos dá um dos mais lindos tecidos.
    Aplaudo essa maravilhosa postagem.
    Abraços para você e Pieter, um ótimo fim de semana!

    1. Caro Taís,
      Obrigado pelas suas palavras e sim, é uma fibra incrível com uma história bíblica muito longa!
      Adoro usar as minhas roupas de linho e também as luxuosas toalhas de mesa, guardanapos e tal. Assim como os lenços de linho.
      Abraços e fim-de-semana feliz para ambos!
      Pieter & Mariette

  7. Articolo interessante.Buon fine settimana.

  8. I always learn something new whenever I visit your blog, Mariette.
    I love linen and it is so perfect for our tropical climate.

    Hugs and blessings, dearest friend 🌹

    1. Dearest Veronica,
      Thank you—we love explaining things and sharing with others!
      Linen is the best fabric to wear in summer.
      Also table linen is the best.

  9. The linen cycle is very interesting. In Portugal it is also produced, but in less quantity than in the past.

    1. Dearest Christina,
      Oh, it is an amazing cycle and makes you appreciate each linen item more!
      Sure in Portugal it is being produced but due to labor costs is is diminishing in several countries.


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