Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Printing Farm Fabric

I purchased a 1906 Montgomery Ward catalogue umpteen years ago for little to nothing.  I remember sitting down and carefully thumbing through the hundreds of pages full of everything you could imagine from undergarments to farm equipment.  It was truly a fascinating look back at what shopping was like near the turn of the century.

The book was then placed in an armoire and sat for several years until I resurrected it just a few weeks ago.  You see, I'm making seed/feed/farm sack pillows and I wanted a backing with farm-related fabric.  So with my 50% off coupon, I hightailed it over to JoAnn Fabrics and began my quest but was sorely disappointed.  Bright yellow and green John Deere fabric wouldn't do, neither would large-scale colorful farm fabric.  I remembered my 1906 catalogue and decided to try making my own fabric by scanning in images and printing the design at Spoonflower.  

This fabric is from the front page advertisement in the catalogue before all of the farm implements Montgomery Wards sold at the time.  

Since I adore windmills, this fabric is from a windmill advertisement:

But the most exciting fabric that I made, was an advertisement for grain sacks.  While I ordered a yard of each fabric, this design was much smaller, so I ordered a fat quarter so I could judge whether or not it would work before I ordered a yard.  I have the exact feed sack on hand, so I took a picture showing the two:

Neat, huh?  I just finished up the pillow and will post pictures soon of the finished product.

I also found a 1925 farm auction flyer from Sedalia, Missouri and I printed just the top portion:

I'm pretty tickled with the results and I have many, many other pieces that need to be scanned and made into fabric, but first I must use what has been already printed!  Spoonflower is a great resource and their printed fabric is delightful.  I've washed all the fabric I featured here and they all did wonderfully in the washer and dryer.  :)

So, when you can't find what you want at the fabric store, make your own!  

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