The Towels full of Holes from which We Cannot Part

holy towel

How many of you have sacred towels, shirts, pants, robes, and other items that you cannot part with no matter how many holes, and rips become it? I have photographed ours and included one at the top and one at the bottom of this post. The top towel photographed has been gently used for over fifty years. As you can see it is embroidered and appliqued with red embroidery and white applique and full of holes, which is a testament to its holiness.

Mr. C’s hand towel as you can view if you scroll to the end has spent a lifetime serving its master. He has had this towel for oh so many years, he has lost count. We want you to know that we have no intention of turning in our towels for the lure of beautiful fluffy ones in arrays of stunning colors or elegantly soft and pleasing Egyptian cottons. Allow me to tell you how it came about that we have holy towels that have been blessed through service.

When I was a teenager my grandmother took me to visit her friend Flora Wolfe. We trudged up and down the steep inclines in the city of San Francisco. Up one hill and down the next and so on until we reached Flora’s house. My grandmother was always out in first place with me huffing and puffing, trailing her giant steps.

I was thrilled to meet Flora, my grandmother’s buddy, and saw that she was working on a dishtowel, adding its decoration. I showed such interest, that she then and there, taught me to basically embroider and gave me two of her gorgeous dishtowels for my “hope chest.” I did not have a hope chest, but I had hope, and saved them in a special place.

Now you know from whence came my holy dishtowel. Mr. C’s holy hand towel came from Uncle Leslie who was the Cannon Towel distributer for the west coast. He and Aunt Jean gave us towels in colors requested, honoring our marriage fifty-four years ago. As you see, we still wash and use them.

HOLY, is that the right way to spell it? Wholly would absolutely be wrong. It means completely, exclusively, not full of holes. Holy on the other hand means righteous, sanctified, and blessed. Tell me why people say Holy shit! Is that then blessed poop? Sorry, but then when they say Holy Toledo, is that then a city full of holes. I have recently heard Holy Moley, which I am certain means Holy nothing or again Holy shit, toned down for parents or other delicates in the group.

I went through this diatribe because I cannot use the words holy towels, I must instead say a towel full of holes. No matter, either way the story can be told. What I would like to know is if you have a towel, or any item full of holes, rips and tears that you cannot get rid of? Heaven forbid it is not there when you look for it. It is just broken in after all the years of use. It is so comfortable, so soft to touch, so endearing. We all have special items we cannot part with, and by the way, the next time you have the urge to take away a little child’s comfort cloth, shame on you. You have one, so what’s the biggie if the toddler has one?

I know when guests come over and they observe us with our holy, oops, towels full of holes, they will not judge us. Hopefully they will have read about Flora Wolfe and the sentiments bewitching our towels full of holes. From now on, shall we all display our towels with pride of service? Send me photos of your holy towels full of holes and I will display them on this site, minus your names. Thanking you in advance.

.holy towel 2

5 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Judy
    Jun 19, 2015 @ 17:11:31

    Unfortunately I don’t have any “wholly” towels. I do however have several “holy” family heirlooms. My great great grandmothers bridal quilt, my great great grandfathers mierscham pipe and some antique jewelry. I tend to get very bored with the same thing and am constantly relocating or redecorating by buying new linens, towels, chotzies, and moving things around from room to room so nothing is ever around long enough to get “wholly”. I do give my castoffs to various charitable organizatiions and that makes me feel happy and maybe a bit “holy”.


  2. Sheila Clapkin
    Jun 20, 2015 @ 09:50:05

    Thank you Judy for helping to decipher “Wholly” from “holy” and I do have plenty of cast off’s which become bags in my trunk and off to the Salvation Army! I enjoyed the chance to ponder as you have in your comment. Holy is, probably as holy does, but sometimes I am irreverent and become annoyed with self! Be well and enjoy.


  3. Ellen
    Jun 23, 2015 @ 09:22:52

    I love all the old receiving blankets and cloth diapers ( now a thing of the past ) that I clean with. Bring a smile to my face… The memories 💜


  4. Sheila Clapkin
    Jun 24, 2015 @ 14:26:29

    Not a reply and addition from VH!
    I have a pair of blue jeans that I wore when I was 14. My first pair. I loved them, just never got rid of them. It would be an act of G-d if I could fit them now. LOL


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