Day Two of guest posting continues! Today I’m welcoming Ann from On Sutton Place to showcase her beautiful vintage grain sack pillows and whatnots from her etsy store. I absolutely love Ann’s style, and her vintage grainsack creations just call my name every time I see them. I know you’re going to love seeing them and reading more about the process! If you will please go to Ann’s blog or her etsy store to pin the images that you see here so she can get the traffic for them! Thanks! ~ Beth
Hi everyone! I’m Ann from the blog On Sutton Place and I’m very happy to be here at Unskinny Boppy! Beth has asked me to show you some of my repurposed grain sack items from my Etsy shop, Sutton Place Designs. Along with that I’d like to share some tips and tidbits about grain sacks in general.
When I first began my love affair with grain sacks it was as someone who thought they were out of reach. Too expensive or too hard to find. When I opened my Etsy shop, I was determined to figure out a way to obtain the sacks easily and at a decent price. The easiest place to find them are on sites like eBay and Etsy. If you are really lucky you might find them at large antique shows or fairs. My friend Kim from Savvy Southern Style posted this picture last fall after attending the Country Living Fair in Atlanta.
Before I begin sewing, I wash every grain sack with a pod each of detergent and Oxiclean. I add fabric softener to the rinse cycle and then dry them all the way. It softens them up a bit and hopefully takes care of any shrinkage. Depending on the width, sometimes I have to pick out the side seams in order to get the most out of the sack. Once in a while when I get to the bottom there are still bits of grain in the corners. It always makes me wonder about the woman who sewed the stitches that I just took out.
Sometimes I feel a bit sad when I cut into a piece of vintage fabric to “repurpose” it. I try to think of it as giving that fabric a second chance. Grain sacks are not being used any more for their original purpose. Instead of sitting in an attic or barn somewhere, I am lovingly bringing them back to life.
My best advice for sewing with grain sacks is to go slowly. Look at each bag for a while and think about the best way to use it. Once you cut, it’s all over. With each sack I sit at my sewing table and measure the length…several times. I decide what to make that will get the most bang for my buck. My first choice for pillow covers is always to have both sides made from grain sack. Sometimes that’s just not possible.
I will only use vintage fabric to back a grain sack pillow cover…never, ever anything new and only as a last resort. I like to make my pillow covers in pairs. I understand all those symmetrical people out there! Sometimes using a different back is the only way to do that. Reversible pillows are just smart…two looks for the price of one.
I want to thank Beth for having me over for a visit. She has been such a good friend and is one of the most generous bloggers out there. Her willingness to share her knowledge and experiences has been a blessing for me.