Feed sacks – something I love to discover in antique stores, feeling a nostalgic twinge for the days of long ago. My mother – not so much. Her memories of feed sacks involve being glad when the family could afford real underwear and she could stop wearing panties made out of feed sacks.
Most of the treasures I discovered while searching through southern California antique stores were simple utilitarian feed sacks made into dish cloths. And this one delightful apron in the photo. I’d read about how wives would send their husbands off to the feed store with directions to get matching sacks so they’d have enough to make a dress out of the sacks. I didn’t truly understand this mission.
When I visited Iowa last summer, and stayed at Farmer’s Dotter, in Bedford, I discovered why. Brenda Weed, owner of the quilter’s retreat, has a massive collection of beautiful feed sacks. Colors and patterns like I’d never imagined!
They may have made scratchy underwear, but now I know why they were used for so many items. Dresses, aprons, dish clothes, quilts … and yes, underwear too.
(If you’re a quilter and near the Bedford, Iowa area, check out Farmer’s Dotter. It’s the perfect spot for a quilter’s retreat. Or ask Brenda about the programs available. She can come visit you and bring a trunk show too! http://www.frontiernet.net/~farmersdotter/)