yes, vintage linens are among my favorite things

So I know I must be pretty boring every time I talk about how much I love vintage linens, but I do.

I bought a couple new old dish towels and these two amazing embroidered vintage pillowcases that were all remainders of an estate sale.

I think people overlooked the pillowcases because they were super yellowed with age in spots including covering the fabulous embroidery. They are embroidered with pine cones and pine branches. I just thought they were so incredibly special.

So I soaked them overnight in Restoration and a little Woolite. You can buy Restoration directly from Engleside Products or on Amazon.

I have said before how terrific this wash is on vintage linens and quilts and old crocheted items. But I wish I had taken a photograph of the pillowcases before I soaked them because this was that amazing a transformation!

Now my old linens are drying on a clothes rack and when they are dry I will press them and put them on my pillows next time I change my sheets!

Don’t overlook old and vintage linens. They add so much charm and character to your home.

I am also in the process of restoring and patching an old flannel-backed quilt from Maine. I love them on our beds in the winter there’s nothing cozier and nicer than an old patchwork quilt and vintage embroidered pillowcases! and if you shop smart and aren’t afraid of cleaning items up you can usually find both of these things at less than fancy dealer prices.

best vintage linen cleaner

I have come across some more fun vintage linens in my travels recently , so I have been laundering them and putting them away.

Recently I have found some terrific vintage pillowcases and linen hand and kitchen towels.

The linen kitchen towels of yesteryear are of a better quality than what you find today, and they clean up very nicely for the most part. Plus they add a twist of fun vintage kitsch to your kitchen!

Pillowcases might seem like an odd thing to hunt for, but some of them I have found a very beautiful. Hand embroidered, handmade of linen, funky floral patterns from the 60s and 70s by Vera. I am not a patterned sheet person, so I use solid colored sheets, which means I can mix it up and create a fun and funky bed scape with vintage pillowcases. And since I like to use vintage quilts and bed spreads, it really makes a nice look.

I will also apply my mixing it up to my tables when I’m setting the table for dinner. Just because you’re having company doesn’t mean you can’t mix it up – and often I do using different fun napkins with a more traditional tablecloth. I will also mix the plates up. Everything does not have to match exactly to get along. I will use colored goblets instead of clear glasses, and things like that.

You can pick up all these vintage items in any number of places: barn picking, flea markets, church rummage sales, consignment and thrift shops. And the things I pick up aren’t necessarily “shabby chic”, they are in fact in excellent condition.

Back to the linens. I use this linen wash stuff called “Restoration”. I discovered it after going on a hunt for something to clean vintage and antique linens because you aren’t left with a lot of options as far as these washes go on the shelves of your local grocery store. Restoration is a little pricey but a little goes a long way. I also use it on my vintage quilts.

Thanks for stopping by!


vintage linens


I love most things vintage. Which is of course one reason I love open barn weekends at the Smithfield Barn on Little Conestoga Road in Downingtown.

So I went wandering out this afternoon to pick up a garden bell on hold for me and ended up scoring a couple of kitchen items – fabulous old and handmade wooden spoons, a Corningware covered medium casserole ( which was just perfect for my peach blueberry crisp I baked later), and a couple of hand embroidered kitchen towels that were kicky in a kitschy sort of way.

I laundered by hand the towels and dried and ironed them. It was at that point I thought I would put them in my powder room instead. They would get too beat up in the kitchen.

I have been collecting linen and cotton vintage hand towels for years. I pick them up where they are inexpensive – thrift stores, church sales, flea markets, the Smithfield Barn. I buy what catches my eye and I buy them to be used.

What you see in the photo above are the towels I scored today with others I already had.

Yes I know, a very Martha moment – only I still do my own ironing!

But seriously? Look how easy it is to dress up a fairly utilitarian powder room or half bath with some vintage linens?

Remember, freshening up the decorating takes neither a large budget or a decorator.

scents of summer…

The scents of summer are as important as the visual cues we get that stay embedded deep in our brains for who knows how long.  Seasons always evoke memories.  And a summer scent or smell is definitely the smell of hand-washed vintage table linens drying in the sun.