Guest blogger series: Vintage sheets 101

by kath_red on 10/03/2011

in Guest Series 2011, Sewing+Fabric

I would love to welcome Jeni from incolororder to whipup today.

I’m Jeni! I’m finishing up my degree in Marketing and Studio Art in Northeast Ohio. I love to find ways to be creative everyday, whether it be through my photography, sewing, or my current favorite hobby, quilting! In addition to sewing, I love to collect vintage kitchenware and vintage sheets! :)

It’s been a rising trend over the last few years for sewers and quilters to sew with reclaimed vintage sheets! It’s a great alternative to quilting cottons that gives your projects a unique twist! Interested, but don’t know where to start?

I’ll walk you through the basics!

1. Identifying Vintage Sheets: Most vintage sheets are relatively thinner than new sheets because they have been washed so many times. This makes them super soft! Most of the sheets that I find are cotton polyester blends although there are some 100% cotton sheets out there as well.

2. Care: When I get home with an armful of vintage sheets, they go in the wash right away. I wash them with hot water using regular detergent and a generous scoop of Oxi-clean. This helps brighten them and get them super clean! I then dry on high. Once they’ve been pulled from the dryer I lay them flat on the bed to cool down. They don’t generally get too wrinkly because of the polyester.

3. Sewing: Sewing with vintage sheets is a lot of fun and not all that different from sewing with quilting cottons! They are a little slippery so extra pinning is helpful. Make sure you have a sharp new needle! Be mindful of what you’re sewing, since they’re lightweight you may need to use some light interfacing to add a little body!

4. Where to buy: I purchase all my vintage sheets from thrift stores! Here in the midwest it’s a sheet gold-mine! Check your local thrift stores often and find out when their sale days are for extra good deals! If you don’t want to buy entire sheets, there are a lot of sellers on Etsy that sell vintage sheet fat quarters, or by-the-yard!

I love sewing and quilting with vintage sheets. It’s a really satisfying feeling. First, the fabrics are super cheerful and sunny! Secondly, you’re recycling, you’re giving them a second chance to shine! To make something beautiful from something discarded is a wonderful thing!

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