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General church linen info...

I have learned the arts of both embroidery and thread crochet in order to produce church linens myself. I would like to make a set of linens for a friend of mine who is being ordained in the spring. I am unsure of the standard sizes of the individual linens. Do you know of a good resource with this information? Thanks!
seminarystitcher
Joined: 10/18/2011 10:13 am
Posts: 3

Re: General church linen info...

Hi,

Thanks for the question. It depends a bit on the religion and the rite...

~MC
MaryCorbet
Joined: 6/1/2011 9:45 am
Posts: 437
Location: Kansas
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Re: General church linen info...

He will be ordained a Catholic priest for the Roman Rite.
seminarystitcher
Joined: 10/18/2011 10:13 am
Posts: 3

Re: General church linen info...

Well, you might want to take a look at some of the sites for Catholic linens, pre-made, and see what sizes they are made in. It looks like there is a good list of sizes here: http://www.catholicsupply.com/churchs/altarcloth.html

You can also check with him (if he is being ordained in the spring, then he has probably worked as a sacristan and is familiar with the sizes of each of the small linens), or with your sacristan or parish priest.

Some items seem to be a matter of preference - some priests like larger palls (if they have a larger chalice, for example) and some like smaller. I find that a 6.5" square pall is usually sufficient.

There's a pretty good book - Sewing Church Linens - that has some of the information in it about small linens, sizes, etc.. It's by Elizabeth Morgan, and it's available on Amazon, I believe. She makes linens for the Anglican church, but I believe that the "High Anglican" linens are the same, with the exception of the pall, which is sometimes not stiff, but in her book, she does go into putting a stiff lining - board or plexiglass (most priests don't seem to like plexiglass, from my experience) - insert into the pall. There's also some information here: http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/01355a.htm which goes into the acceptable types of fabric, which small linens can be embroidered and which not embroidered (the corporal, for example, is supposed to be free of ornament, except for a small red cross in the front center third), which can be starched and which shouldn't be, etc.

Hope that helps a little bit!

MC
MaryCorbet
Joined: 6/1/2011 9:45 am
Posts: 437
Location: Kansas
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Re: General church linen info...

Thanks! That is most helpful!
seminarystitcher
Joined: 10/18/2011 10:13 am
Posts: 3

Re: General church linen info...

I'd suggest you go directly to Elizabeth at churchlinens.com.
She's Anglican but has recommended Catholic sizes, too. Our pastor was really pleased with the sizes of purificators I made. Our altar is different, so had to make different sized corporals than normal.
Are you talking about vestments? I've made some vestments and Elizabeth's patterns are the best. Her cassock pattern is fantastic and looks amazing. You can buy excellent quality fabric and even lace and make that for even less than an average cassock alb.
Mary has some great recommendations for embroidery patterns. Anne
AnneG
Joined: 6/27/2011 1:16 pm
Posts: 48

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