Thursday, June 2, 2011

My Love of Vintage Linens

One of my favorite past times is to go to auctions and estate sales.  I love to see the bidding go up to hundreds of dollars on an item you weren't even sure would sell or to get that beautiful tea set that you didn't think you could possibly afford for only $10.00.  But even more exciting than that is to win that coveted box of vintage linens.  This doesn't happen that often since there always seems to be someone that is willing to spend any amount as long as they win the bid.  But this is what makes finally winning one so much better!

When I'm previewing the boxes up for auction I don't usually examine everything closely as some people do and maybe I should do too.  Instead I quickly look through the linens, feeling the fabric, checking to see if they look like they were cared for and seeing if anything catches my eye.  When the auction begins and I am actually the high bidder, that's when the fun begins.  I can't wait to get my latest purchases home and carefully look through them one by one.

There's this great history when it comes to vintage linens. They've been around for so many years.  I often wonder who was the original owner, where and when they were purchased, and who spent so many long hours creating the fabulous detailed crocheting, embroidery and cutwork that make these pieces the treasures that they are.  Who was in attendance at the dinner parties and special occasions where these lovely tablecloths, napkins and doilies were so beautifully displayed? 

As I examine each one I am thrilled to find no rips, tears or stains. Then when you least expect it, you pull out the most gorgeous tablecloth, napkins or bedcover that you could possibly imagine.  The quality of the linen and the handiwork are not to be found anymore.  And yes, there are those linens that you find that have stains, a loose thread or two or are covered with those tiny storage spots.  This is when the soaking begins and becomes a challenge.  Will I be able to get that tough stain out without damaging the fabric and bring it back to its original splendor?

When finally they are all freshly cleaned and it's time to press them, this is when you really get to see the exquisite detailed work that has gone into them.  By now I just adore each and every one of my new vintage linens.  They are wrapped in tissue paper and carefully stored away to await to be lovingly displayed once again.

Yes, I think you can honestly say that I really do love my vintage linens!


  1. Sounds lovely... any pictures? :o)

  2. I love the crocheted butterfly napkin. Gorgeous!
    I am your new follower. Drop by my blog,, when you get a chance:)

  3. You have quite the dedication to them! Sounds like a wonderful experience =). I'm following you now, would love if you could do the same. xx