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Stitch storage
January 18, 2011 7:49 AM   Subscribe

How do you safely store embroideries and precious fabric?

I rent at the moment which means that I can't put anything up on the walls (unless there already is a nail up there when I moved in) and probably won't be able to until I own the place. (Yes, Americans, I'm jealous of you renters being able to paint and hang willy-nilly.) I still like sewing, though. How can I store completed work compactly and safely?
posted by mippy to Home & Garden (6 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
 
Layer your precious fabrics and embroideries between white cotton or linen fabric and gently roll it over a paper towel roll or thick dowel, and then put it inside an air-tight container. Do not fold! Open the container up every few months to ensure there is a little fresh air in there, sprinkle some lavender in there to prevent moths.
posted by banannafish at 7:55 AM on January 18, 2011


I lay mine flat inside a ziplock bag if it's just temporary. Inside the bag between two pieces of acid-free paper if it's going to be a long time. If I have to fold it, I just fold around all four sides so the stitched part is still flat.
posted by raisingsand at 7:58 AM on January 18, 2011


If you've got a guest bedroom, you can also store embroideries or quilts laid flat on the bed, under a duvet or sheet.
posted by Bardolph at 7:59 AM on January 18, 2011


I don't have a guest bedroom. I rent a room in my house, so everything other than my food, toiletries and kitchen stuff needs to fit in one room - in an ideal world I'd have the slide-out panels they use at the V+A :)
posted by mippy at 8:23 AM on January 18, 2011


Generally, archival storage of flat textiles involves rolling it onto an acid-free cardboard tube, and then storing the roll in an acid-free box. This will prevent discoloration or damage due to chemicals in non-archival cardboard tubes, wood dowels, or plastic pipe.

You can probably get away with rolling multiple embroideries onto the same tube. Secure them to the tube by tying a few loops of archival twine around them.

You can get the tubes, twine and boxes on Ebay, or by googling around. The tubes will be a little pricey for what they are (10-15 bux each).
posted by Slap*Happy at 8:52 AM on January 18, 2011


Avoid plastic if there is any danger of humidity--even the tiniest bit of moisture can foster mildew growth in an airtight environment. I second the acid-free paper and cardboard.
posted by Rula Lenska at 9:33 PM on January 20, 2011


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