Some people think that feather dusters are a waste of time and that they just scatter dust about. This simply isn’t true. But you do need to know how to use them properly because it’s all about static electricity.
Someone realised that as well as being soft and gentle, the feathers (if rubbed) will create static electricity, trapping the dust and holding it until it is shaken out. It’s like a dust magnet.
The feather duster came into use in the mid 1800’s and the patent was awarded to a Susan Hibbard in 1876 after a court battle with her husband who claimed he had invented it. A female entrepreneur in 1876 – Ms Hibbard must have been quite a character! The earliest feather dusters were made using feathers from geese and turkeys. These days most are made using ostrich feathers which are more durable and attractive.
As with many handmade products, feather dusters last longer if they are well cared for. Shake out the dust before putting them away and store them hanging on a peg. Our feather dusters are so pretty – why would you want to stuff them in the back of a cupboard anyway?! When used properly, feather dusters are more effective than many anti-static fabric dusters on the market.