I don’t know what the weather is like where you live, but today we had a HIGH of 6 degrees. That’s without the wind chill. If you take the wind chill into account the temperature “felt” like minus 8. Let me tell you, I am less inclined to check the mail on days like this. Which brings me to the point of todays post – let’s talk about finding and collecting vintage crochet blankets!
Blankets are warm and cozy and therefore the perfect remedy to this weather. My grandma used to crochet and she used to make her grandchildren these elaborate blankets. They were amazing. I still remember opening the closet under the stairs to pull out these special blankets. Sadly, many decade later,I don’t know what happened to them. I think this is one reason I am drawn to these blankets. It’s marvelous to think of the hours someone invested in crocheting a particular blanket. It’s even more special when your realize that person may have been someone’s grandma.
So I have a confession. It has been so ridiculously cold here that I went to Trader Joes and I bought six pots of flowering bulbs. Wouldn’t you do the same thing? In fact, I bought all the remaining pots in the store with flowering bulbs. If Trader Joes doesn’t have any flowering bulbs – you can blame me and the single digit temperatures outside.
These blankets are usually soft and since they are crocheted, they have the best texture to them. Often times when working in a uniform color scheme – like whites, grays, or tans – or neutrals in general – you need some texture to keep things interesting. These blankets definitely add texture and warmth to a room.
I was getting these vintage crochet blankets ready to take to the shop and as I was folding them – it occurred to me that they looked pretty just randomly tossed on the back of the sofa.
Where to Find Vintage Crochet Blankets
These blankets are fairly easy to find and you can still buy them for a reasonable price. I always like finding vintage items that are exceptional quality but are still a great deal. You can find these at church sales, Etsy, Ebay, and from reputable online sellers. My favorite place to find these blankets is at church sales. First, there are many talented women who donate finely made vintage crochet blankets to church sales. Second, it’s nice to support a good cause. Third, the blankets are almost always exceptionally clean and in great condition. On occasion, you can also find these blankets for sale at an auction. Before you place any bids, I recommend you inspect the blankets carefully for any damage.
How to Clean Vintage Crochet Blankets
These blankets can be fragile depending upon their age and condition. To ensure they are clean, I let them soak in a bucket with Oxiclean for at least 24 hours. Then I rinse them out and I let them soak again in Calgon for another 3-4 hours. Yes, you read that correctly. Calgon – as in the bubble bath. It’s a well kept secret that Calgon helps to ensure that any soap residues, which build up over time, in the blankets are released. After soaking the blankets in Calgon, I rinse the blankets under cool water in the bathtub and gently wring them out. Then I put them into the washing machine and wash them on the delicate cycle and finally I put them into the dryer with a medium heat setting. (Unless the blankets are made out of wool or alpaca)
What to look for in Vintage Crochet Blankets
These blankets can be made out of a variety of different yarns. The most common yarns are cotton and acrylic or a blend. These materials generally hold up well over time and can be easily laundered. One drawback with acrylic yarn is that it tends to pill as time goes by.
If you find a blanket that is made out of wool or mohair or alpaca then it should be hand washed. Once hand washed, simply let it air dry. I find that wool blankets generally dry quickly. The tan blanket shown above and in previous photos is made of mohair. If you find a blanket made out of one of these materials and it’s in good condition- definitely snap it up. That’s a great find.
Let’s summarize this post. It’s been ridiculously cold here. My go-to remedies in weather like this are vintage crochet blankets and many pots of flowering bulbs. I encourage you to keep your eyes open for similar blankets and have linked some for you below. Also, don’t hesitate on buying those flowering bulbs from Trader Joes. Really. They won’t be in the store for very long.