Friday, November 13, 2015

Small Pleasures: Wipe Your Messes with Beauty




Of all the lessons I learned from my Danish grandmother, the best was “Life isn’t pretty, but it doesn’t have to be ugly.” She used to say it often, usually while cleaning up something that me and my brother had broken/spilled/played-to-death, using a handsome kitchen towel that she had embroidered herself. Then we got a cookie and were sent outside. 

I’ve taken that advice to heart. I use proper kitchen towels, just like my grandma. Beautiful, woven, Swedish kitchen towels. A paper roll of towels is fine when you need to drain some bacon. For real life, you need a proper towel -- to dry dishes, to use as a hot pad to pull the artisanal (or frozen) pizza from the oven, to wipe down the counters, and wipe up your own kid’s spills. Are they more expensive? Yes. Are they worth it? Yes. 

Fjorn carries an amazing line of kitchen towels from Ekelund Weavers, a Swedish mill that has been weaving beautiful textiles for over 300 years, and is still family owned and operated. Both beautiful and durable, these towels are made from carefully selected natural fibers chosen for their utility and for the sustainable manner in which they are grown.

I don’t follow Grandma Astrid’s advice to the letter: she once told me that the secret to a long life was taking a shot of gin that had raisins soaked in it everyday. I’m pretty sure she just enjoyed the gin. But taking care of the ugly parts of life with beauty is definitely satisfying.

Check out the Fjorn Scandinavian collection from Ekelund Weavers online or at our shop in Carmel-by-the-Sea, California, a town so beautiful even spilled milk is celebrated as art.