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Thread: Protecting fabric stash - shelving finishes

  1. #1

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    I am building out a new quilting/craft room and am inclined to build my own shelving so it's just the depth, width and arrangement I want BUT, what do different finishes do to fabric over time? Is paint preferable to sealed stain? I'm not overly fond of the 'purchased' shelving available - prefer the more 'natural' look of real wood.
    I look forward to your experience and opinions but would love to hear from a fabric manufacturer if there is one in the group!

  2. #2
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    I am curious about this too... I am using plastic shelve units now, and would love to convert to wood.

  3. #3
    Junior Member barbgooch's Avatar
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    I've heard that over time, any oils or stains in wood will find its way into fabric. Anything you can do to separate the two would be best for the fabric. Shelf paper, muslin or sheets that you don't care about, or painting would all work well. Though wood shelving looks nice, I use vinyl covered wire crate boxes for storage and viewing and quick access.
    Barb

  4. #4
    Senior Member schwanton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lizzygail
    I am building out a new quilting/craft room and am inclined to build my own shelving so it's just the depth, width and arrangement I want BUT, what do different finishes do to fabric over time? Is paint preferable to sealed stain? I'm not overly fond of the 'purchased' shelving available - prefer the more 'natural' look of real wood.
    I look forward to your experience and opinions but would love to hear from a fabric manufacturer if there is one in the group!
    My cabinets have raw wood interiors. I purchased vinyl shelf liner and do not place the fabric against the sides or back. I've been debating on lining the sides and back with something but do not have a clue how to do it. Maybe a laminate would do the trick! Good luck.

  5. #5
    Super Member oldswimmer's Avatar
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    I have seen in magazines how they line the back of bookshelves with a pretty wall paper. I dont' know if that would work in this case. I don't know much about wall paper, or if it has bad things in the finish. I do know that those pics in the magazines always catch my eye!

    Also if you are close to an IKEA, they have some great clear, heavier shelf liner. Once again, though, I don't know how plastic reacts with fabric. Maybe someone else can lend some insight.

  6. #6
    Super Member Oklahoma Suzie's Avatar
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    I'm going to keep watching this.

  7. #7
    Senior Member schwanton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldswimmer
    I have seen in magazines how they line the back of bookshelves with a pretty wall paper. I dont' know if that would work in this case. I don't know much about wall paper, or if it has bad things in the finish. I do know that those pics in the magazines always catch my eye!

    Also if you are close to an IKEA, they have some great clear, heavier shelf liner. Once again, though, I don't know how plastic reacts with fabric. Maybe someone else can lend some insight.
    I never thought of wallpaper - vinyl wallpaper would be perfect. Thank you for the idea!

  8. #8
    Super Member Boston1954's Avatar
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    I am so concerned about wood that I lined my cedar chest with plastic.

  9. #9
    quiltluvr's Avatar
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    I was thinking of clear contact paper.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Quilting Nonnie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boston1954
    I am so concerned about wood that I lined my cedar chest with plastic.
    Cedar is especially hard on fabric. It causes those ugly rusty spots on your quilts.

    I keep some quilts in a wood display cabinet. The finish has been protected with some kind of urethane. I still lined the inside with acid free paper.

  11. #11
    Super Member Carol W's Avatar
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    Great ideas.

  12. #12
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    that is a good question. I would like to know to. God bless. Penny

  13. #13
    grammylinda's Avatar
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    I read someplace recently that aluminum foil would protect fabric from the oils in wood. I don't know how many shelves you will have to line.....but this might be an option if it doesn't become too expensive. It'd take *lots* of foil to cover all the shelves I have! :-D

  14. #14
    Super Member sahm4605's Avatar
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    I am going to have to keep an eye on this thread because I want to get some storage as my stash grows with my quilting and crafting skills. I would think that sticky shelf paper on the back and sides would work. but then again I would want to know about what it would do to the fabric. I wonder if there is some acid free shelf paper that you could get. That would be a great thing to invent and patent. I wish that I had that ability. Maybe asking at quilt shows would help.

  15. #15
    Super Member SuziC's Avatar
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    I have my fabric in a cabinet with wood shelves. But "just in case" the wood finish would damage the threads, I lined all the shelves with a pretty contact shelving paper. It protects the fabric and looks bright and cheerful.

  16. #16
    Moderator sharon b's Avatar
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    So just regular shelf paper works ?

    I am getting ready to put up some shelves so this was very timely , THANKS

  17. #17
    Super Member wvdek's Avatar
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    Interesting question and dilemma. I would opt to paint my shelves a semi-gloss. Your fabric is on it anyway and you won't see the wood showing through. The facing boards and trim of bookcase can remain natural wood tones or use a varathane on it.

  18. #18
    Super Member SuziC's Avatar
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    I used the same contact shelf paper i used in my kitchen.
    It was easy to put in and my fabric dosen't catch on the wood shelving. :roll:

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