DIYdiy projectshaylie waring

diy project: refreshing old bed linens

by Grace Bonney

Time and time again I grow bored with my plain old bed sheets, or they become dingy and I yearn for the freshness of new linens before the time comes that I can afford them. A quick fix to freshening up sheets, shams, duvet covers or any other household linens only requires a bottle of good old fashioned fabric dye, minimal sewing, and just little bit of your time! I also like to save any old linens with holes or tears to be patched or to be salvaged as scrap fabric. The uses of an old bed sheet are endless, but in this project- the sheets never leave the bedroom.

Here I took an old coverlet that I have had since I was a teen and have never been able to part with, and used it as inspiration for my Spring look. A few years ago my coverlet got a small hole in it that has slowly become a giant hole, here I have patched it up and used the scraps to spruce up old pillowcases and sheets, that I darkened with RIT dye. You could also use color remover if you wanted to change color all together, and color remover on florals and prints can sometimes offer a great vintage look (be sure to test a scrap first!). Have fun with your sheets and don’t be afraid to leave unfinished edges. Also, be sure to use very soft fabrics to embellish your bed linens, so you aren’t bothered by the texture while you sleep, for this reason its best to recycle old bed linens to make new ones. –Haylie

CLICK HERE for the full how-to after the jump!

Old linens
Scrap Fabric
Trims or Ribbons
RIT Dye (or other household fabric dyes)
Needle & Thread
Dye Bucket

Sewing Machine

Step 1.
Gather your old linens, sheets and scrap fabrics and materials and decide what you are dyeing and what is going to be embellishment

Step 2.
Cut scraps into squares to make little florets
Floret instructions: cut squares of fabric in a range of sizes (1″-3″). fold one square into a triangle and with a needle and thread, pierce through the center of the fold as shown, string along thread to knotted end, repeat stringing 3 to 5 squares per floret, tie off with a knot. Now you have a little scrap fabric flower.

Step 3.
Following instructions included with packaged dye exactly, set up dye bath and brighten your linens (also, to remove color you may use a color remover, again following instructions included, precisely!)

Step 5.
Embellish bedding, by sewing down florets and trims. Any holes can easily be patched by basting fabric into place and then machine sewing it down. I then appliqued left over fabrics over the main patch for a homespun look.

Step 6.
Now you can make your Spring fresh bed, and take a nice afternoon nap in style!!

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