Behind the Scenes : The resurrection of a 1940s barkcloth purse

I really love when other shops posts their "behind the scenes" scenes, so I thought I'd share some of our own "behind the scenes" stories with you.  One thing I've found many people don't realize is just how much work goes into getting vintage items ready to sell in the shop.  So, I wanted to show you some of work that goes into even the most simple vintage item to get it for you.

I'm completely enamored with barkcloth purses, so these 1940s1950s bags are always coming home with matter what the condition.   This little beauty had very badly stained and musty fabric along with dry, brittle wood handles.  But, with just a little work, it is made lovely again and is ready for a new home and a new life!

This amazing hydrangea print barkcloth bag had seen better days...yucky!

Browning age spots and a strong musty odor

Step 1 was to remove the cloth from the wooden handles.
You can really see the effects of decades of wear, dirt, smoke, and 
storage in the difference between the exposed and 
hidden portions of the fabric.

Step 2 is a nice LONG soak in a gentle cleaner.  Yep, the water really did get that yellow.
After several soaks, the bag was line-dried.
Step 3 involved sanding the handles as they were really dry and rough.  Then a wood 
conditioner/light stain was applied.   Step 4...restitch the fabric to the handles.

VoilĂ !  Pretty close to the original - a few faint stains remain, but it is now able to be used again.
These 1940s barkcloth bags 
are a fabulous accessory for a casual summer outfit!

Find this bag in our shop!

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