Diapering with Damask


Let’s talk about “diapering.” No, I’m not talking about a baby’s butt, but diapering as it applies to Damask Linens. Diapering is derived from the French term diaspre, (bed of flowers) and means to adorn or bejewel. Vintage Damask linens were used to “diaper” walls, windows, tables and bedchambers. When used in a fashion sense, ladies of the French and English court were said to have had their bed chambers “diapered” with fine Damask linens.  And (I’m speculating here) probably someone “bejeweled” a baby’s butt with a piece of Damask linen and a whole new use for the term “diapering” was coined.

From the fourteenth to the sixteenth century, most damasks linens were woven in a single color, with a glossy warp-faced satin pattern against a duller ground. Two-color damasks had contrasting color warps (fatter thread) and wefts, (thinner thread.) Polychrome damask is often gold or other metallic threads or additional colors as supplemental brocading wefts. Medieval damasks were usually woven in silk, but wool and linen damasks can also be found.  (Thank you Wikipedia)

Today’s Damask is usually a single-color produced from silk, linen or linen-type synthetic fabrics. Damask weaves appear most commonly in table linens, but also in clothing and furnishings.  Many repurposers take a Damask tablecloth and repurpose it to beautiful Damask evening dresses. For a wide variety of Vintage Damask linen, visit our vintage linen and lace store in The Treasure Shop. Space B4.  We are exclusive linens and lace, and we’ve been in the same location for many years. Repeat customers come from all over Colorado to “pick” our finds. If you have never been there, we invite you to try us. Let us know what you are looking for. Send me an e-mail. If we don’t have it (yet), we may know where we can get it.


THE WAY IT WAS: Crocheted Bedspread

This is simply too pretty not to reblog. I had one similar to this in the store for about 2 days before someone purchased it. Now i get calls from people wanting more.

Alice in Antique

Hand crocheted Bedspread was a big undertaking and countless hours of work.  But when daylight was gone and inside chores were finished, one picked up their needlework and stitched.  It was and still is a prize to have one.

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Get Down and Polish the Dirty.

Spray bottle top
Spray bottle top (Photo credit: Arria Belli)

You are in mid-panic.  The in-laws are coming for dinner and your furniture looks as if a dust storm blew through your house in the middle of the night.  You go to your cleaning cabinet and here is where you discover you are out of furniture polish.  The heart can’t take this and you want to open the booze cabinet instead.  What can you do?  Follow these simple steps and you will stay sober and live another day. 

1)      Run to the kitchen.  (don’t trip over the dog or the baby)

2)      Measure out a quart (4 cups) of water and pour into a pot. .  

3)      Put the water on the stove and turn on the burner. 

4)      Open your cupboard and pull out:

  1. Olive oil and
  2. White vinegar

5)      Take a deep breath and:

  • Put 2 (two) tablespoons of olive oil into the quart of now hot (tepid) water.
  • Add 1 (one) tablespoon of vinegar
  • Let it heat up until it’s just warm but not boiling while stirring constantly.
  • Pour the mixture into a spray bottle before it gets too warm.
  • Get busy.  Use it as you would any spray polish with a lint free rag. 

 This is a low-cost, green alternative to expensive furniture polish.  It works best if the mixture is warm, so you might want to sit your spray bottle into another pot of warm water occasionally and before using the next time.  The mixture will wash the dirt off the furniture, leaving behind a light oil finish.  Add a drop or two of lemon extract to the mix for a great lemon scented furniture polish.  Your mother-in-law will be impressed. 

By the way, for you collectors, I have a natural formula for a furniture polish that my grandmother used.  It works great on antique furniture because it doesn’t harm the original finish.  That and more of my formula for removing stains from vintage linens are also coming.  Tell your friends.  Have them subscribe.

We Depend on You.

Occasionally people ask us where we get our linens. It took us awhile, but at this stage of our business, we depend on our customers; therefore, most of our linens come from referrals and sellers who contact us directly. More than just referrals however, we depend on our customers to tell us what they want. In some cases, especially when it comes to vintage lace, we may buy from a few known dealers or private estates, both local and out-of-state.

In any case, we have specific criteria for what we put in the store and most of our referring agents know what we look for. When they get it in stock or hear of a supply, they contact us. For example, some of our early 70’s and 80’s linens have come from a Chicago estate sale and we are fortunate enough to have established a long-term relationship with the estate so we expect that we will have plenty of beautiful vintage linens for years to come.

Some of our exotic lace came from the granddaughter of a Russian immigrant who ‘hand made’ the lace she carried out of Russia as a young girl, during the revolution. Occasionally, I will come across a great supply of vintage material on either Etsy or eBay that I can’t pass up. I have selected dealers on both these sites that I have bought from before and what they sell is quality.

Bottom line is that we depend on people, just like you, people with taste and an eye for fine linen that holds that old school quality. Thank you for you e-mail and your suggestions. Please keep them coming. If you’re local and have vintage linens to sell, contact us. We are always in the market.