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Thursday, April 7, 2011

Fabulous Feedsack

I loooove vintage feedsack fabric. Feedsack fabric was a "child" of the depression and WW2 eras. An astute feed salesman saw that women were reusing feedsacks as fabric for household items and got the brilliant idea of packaging his feed in brightly printed cotton bags. Sales on his brand of feed shot thru the roof and soon other feed companies followed suit. The feed sacks were slightly over a yard of fabric and were often used for children's clothing. If you got a couple matching bags, your project could be larger. I have seen feedsack children's and women's vintage clothing. I have seen it in towels and often used in quilts. It is just so darn cheery! The prints vary from florals to geometric, plaids, solids and novelty prints..some of which are quite coveted!
The fabric has a telltale weave and sometimes you can even see the holes where the thread was removed and the bag opened along the selvedges and top or bottom. Usually I find remnants or opened bags but this summer I hit the bounty. I was late to an estate sale and figured most of the goodies were long gone but went thru the house anyways. In one bedroon was the most gawdawful trunk upolstered in what appeared to be pink shag bathmat! Inside it was stuffed with fabric and I started digging. The first feedsack I saw I almost squealed! I filled a whole large paper bag. There were no prices so I asked the man in charge how much and I believe it was a couple dollars. There were full sacks and pieces parts. Most of these pictured are long sold but I had to do a glamour shot of them to remember them by!
Pinks and blues..
I really liked the one with the red hibiscus flowers..
Here's one with some of my paper peonies.. found a few more this weekend but they have some spots so they are washed and getting the sunshine treatment on the grassy hill behind my house. Hopefully the spots will come out. I soak old linens overnight and spin them out in the morning. lay them out on the dew damp grass and let them dry in the sun. The combination of the dew steaming up through the cloth, the chloraphyll in the grass and the sunshine can take out most stains (not paint, rust or ink) and is easy on the fabric! It is especially good for things that have yellowed in storage. Sometimes it takes a couple treaments, but it is amazing how white they can get!

Last shot..not fabric but I had to share a butterfly I "caught" on my flowers today..a swallowtail I amazing! They are quick little buggers! Hoping you have an amazing day! Til next time! Julia


FabricFascination said...

What a find in that old trunk!

Very interesting about the grass and sunlight removing stains too. I didn't know that.

Kim said...

Oh my what a delightful find. A bag full of feed sacks for only two bucks!!
I really enjoy reading your blog post and looking at your photos.
Have an amazing day,
Kym, aka Vintage Kym

Unknown said...

Hello. I hope you don't mind - I borrowed one of your pictures of the feedsack fabric for my post on 1940s fabrics here:

It is credited to you and the picture links back to your blog, but if you want me to remove it I will.