Reawakening The Undomesticated Housewife


Hey dudes! My name is Natalie. (You may know me better as Nat The Fat Rat.) By way of introduction, I’d like to share with you the story of the reawakening of my own Undomesticated Housewife, which is a very rare breed of lady indeed, if I do say so myself.

There was once a time in my life when I never could have imagined giving a whit about whether or not my spice rack was organized. The state of my underwear drawer? The perfectly ironed shirt? What-ever. Those were things that dwelled far beneath me, an ambitious educated female, and that were possibly insulting even, if I really had to think about it.

But who knows what happened to me, because here I am, a few short years later, and one of the finer things in my life is this set of ruffled towels I own that hang above my toilet. I’ve managed to fold them just right (trifolds on towels is an art form, friends), and they perfectly complement my minty green tile. Who’d have seen this coming, I like to wonder sometimes? Who do I think I am anymore?

The fact of the matter is, having a knowledge and appreciation for the home arts is rad. It just is. It links us to the  generations before us and to cultures far across the oceans. It teaches us history and reinforces old fashioned etiquette, something I feel is largely missing in today’s society. It turns our homes into respites from the world outside, and you know what else? It can be danged satisfying, and that is the truth.

I used to live in Idaho in a tiny shoe box of a house that I decorated within an inch of its life. I now live in a tiny apartment in New York City overlooking Central Park, and while there is far less to upkeep to keep up in this tiny little palace, my love for the domestic arts (whether in an ironic way or not) has grown even more.

And I’m in good company! It seems like these days there’s a resurgence in house keeping and home arts, thanks to classy broads like Martha Stewart and the kindly folks at HGTV. Remember when knitting was all the rage a few years back? Remember how in Brooklyn all the cool kids are wearing your grandma’s doily’s on their shirts?

And anyway, we no longer need to pretend like housework is “demeaning,” and thank goodness! Our intellectual ambitions can mingle happily with our ability to needlepoint up a good-looking sampler. It doesn’t have to be an either/or. Hooray for that.

I hope that what I bring to this blog is my eye for fashion, trends, and design, and my joy for the silliest, smallest of details. I love to work on my home (even if it is only 300-square-feet), I love trying my hand at antiquated crafts and obscure traditions, and I am endlessly fascinated by the idea that there is a “right” way to fold a napkin on the dinner table. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still a rather ornery feminist by nature, and I still make my husband iron his own shirts in the mornings, but there is just something divine to me about a well-executed hospital corner that really thrills my toenails, and I’m sure you would agree.

And so it is that we begin this little journey together, here at The New Home Ec. I’m so excited to be here, to share what I know and to learn something new from both my fellow bloggers and from all of you.

Here’s to The New Home Ec!

Article Posted 5 years Ago
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