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Thread: How old is this.......

  1. #1
    Super Member nannya54's Avatar
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    I picked up a box of fabrics at a garage sale knowing some were a bit unusable and in unpacking them I found one that had the sale's tag on it still. Off to the side it said "9 Yds" and the tag stapled on said "Penneys $.28" First of all, I didn't know that Penneys ever sold fabric and then the 28cents threw me a bit. Anyone out there have a clue how old this fabric is?

  2. #2
    Super Member dakotamaid's Avatar
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    My mom used to order fabrics from Penney's, Sears, and Montgomery wards all the time. Some of it was pretty cheap.!!

    Also, these older fabrics were sometimes not color stable so be careful where you use them. :D

  3. #3
    Power Poster Jingle's Avatar
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    I don't have any idea how old it is. Yes, Pennys and most of those types of stores sold fabric.

  4. #4
    Pam
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    Super Member Pam's Avatar
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    Post a picture of the fabric. My Mom is guessing it is about 35 years old, just from the price.

  5. #5
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    OMG...............I use to buy lots of fabric in Penneys. I would go there with my boyfreinds mom the woman how taught me the love of fabric and sewing. I dated him from 1970-73 about a year later Penneys closed there fabric dept. So my guess it the fabric is from 1975 or before making it at least 27 years old. The .28 price was about the going rate for fabric if you spent .75 or more it was for formal wear like to make a dress for the prom. Years ago most dept stores sold fabric and also the 5 and dime stores, Grants, Woolworth and McCrory, there were no such things as a fabric store like Joanns or anything even called a LQS. No one made quilts back then that would tell about it if you made a quilt you were considered poor.

    Please post pictures I would love to see the fabric and walk down memory lane.

  6. #6
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    I remember Mom buying fabric from Sears... you could even buy fabric that matched the bedspreads they sold to make curtains with.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by amma
    I remember Mom buying fabric from Sears... you could even buy fabric that matched the bedspreads they sold to make curtains with.
    I remember that.......too funny.

  8. #8
    Super Member Kathy N's Avatar
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    I would say mid 70's too. I worked there in 75 & 76 and we sold fabric. You probably got a clearance piece hense the great price tag!!!

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    I inherited scads of lace on the bolt and silk fabric. It was given to me 25 years ago and the owner had had it for many years. There were some price tags. I don't remember well but less than a dollar for a bolt of lace (yards and yards). The silk was high end and I don't think she paid very much for it. I treasured it for years and have now finally sewn most of it. A photo of it would look good on the wall in your sewing room. Good find. Did it smell? How do you get the smell out? Some of my Mom's had been stored and got 'the smell'.

  10. #10
    Honey's Avatar
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    I bought fabric from Penny's when I started sewing in 1963. I can remember getting some fabric for .99 a yard.

  11. #11
    Super Member SherriB's Avatar
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    That brings back some sweet memories! I can remember my Mom buying fabric from Penney's when I was little girl.

  12. #12
    Super Member nannya54's Avatar
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    Here is a picture ( I hope ) of the fabric. The middle one, purple, is the one with the price tag of 28 cents but the three of them have all the same texture. No smell, even while ironing them but they feel kind of stiff and grainy - not like cotton's today. Perhaps they starched them prior to bolting and selling?
    Attached Images Attached Images


  13. #13
    Senior Member yourstrulyquilts's Avatar
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    ......certainly takes me back a day or two.... :?

  14. #14
    Super Member maryb119's Avatar
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    They are "old" prints but I like them. Are they 36 inches wide or 45"? If they are 45", the stiffness could come from "permanant press" treatment they used on the cottons in the 60's and 70's but if they are 36 inches wide, they are older probably older than that.

  15. #15
    Senior Member TammyD's Avatar
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    Very pretty fabric! I can see why you bought them. :D Enjoy!

  16. #16
    Super Member wvdek's Avatar
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    Very pretty fabric. I would say it is from the 50's for that price. The fabris tho looks like early 70's to me.

  17. #17
    Super Member ScrapQuilter's Avatar
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    great fabric.......... I can see a vintage style quilt.

  18. #18
    Moderator littlehud's Avatar
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    Those are so pretty.

  19. #19
    Super Member nannya54's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by maryb119
    They are "old" prints but I like them. Are they 36 inches wide or 45"? If they are 45", the stiffness could come from "permanant press" treatment they used on the cottons in the 60's and 70's but if they are 36 inches wide, they are older probably older than that.
    They are 36 inches. And yes, I thought they were kind of sweet. I got a whole box for a buck so whatever was in there was going to be a treasure!

  20. #20
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    I bought fabric from Penneys about 55 years ago. It was regularly priced at about .30 a yard and on sale it was four yards for a dollar. I could get a dress for each of my two oldest girls out of four yards when they were small. They liked to dress alike and being three years apart it was hard to find purchased dressed alike. The dresses I made wore well, but of course had to be ironed. Years later some of the scraps from the dressed showed up in quilts I made.

  21. #21
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    Yes, I agree with about 1975 or before. Before the Penneys moved out to the new mall built in 1976, it was in the Downtown area. Loved that store, fabric was upstairs with an overlooking balcony. That is when I was in high school. :)

  22. #22
    Senior Member bodie358's Avatar
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    My mother always sewed my school clothes and JC Penney was where we got the patterns and fabrics. That was over 40 years ago!

  23. #23
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    I definately think it was before the 70's.. I was learning to sew in the late 60's and never got anything that cheap. I'm leaning more to the early 60's.. also with that pattern they seem like earlier.. in the mid to late 60's the paisleys and more "mod" fabrics became more popular. also I think the fabric width changed from 36" to 45" in the mid 60's.. so I'm saying this fabric must be early 60's or before.

  24. #24
    Super Member jljack's Avatar
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    I remember us going to Penney's and my mother buying fabric there. That was in the 1950s, probably about 1958 or 59.

  25. #25
    Super Member nannya54's Avatar
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    Thank you for all the ideas. I appreciate the help and reading the stories. I'm leaning towards the later 50's early 60's just because of the price. I've seen prints similar in the LQS now. I'm thinking about making doll quilts for the museum with it. The vintage look should work. Again, thanks!

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