Rachel C Oliver
Clothing Project - Preserving & Storing
Updated: Jun 18, 2019
The family trunk was also filled with clothing from the late 19th and early 20th century. There is my great-grandmother's silk wedding jacket from 1889. It appears that she made it herself and even used a sewing machine for many of the seams. You can clearly see the stitches and all the iron hooks and loops are still on there. This is one area I learned how to protect and cover with clear mylar so the rusting iron hooks don't damage the delicate silk fabric. This will be the first item I will work on using the vacuuming and brushing techniques I learned. It's a very time-consuming task, but totally lots of fun and worth it to keep it safe for the next 100+ years!
The other item I'll work on first is a precious little boy's cotton shirt. It has lovingly been patched many times. I'm not sure whose it might have been, but I suspect it was my grandfather's and/or one of his two older brothers who were all born between 1890 and 1898. His youngest brother was born in 1908, so it could have been his. He passed away from pneumonia in 1923 so they may have saved it for that reason. This can be washed carefully with Ivory soap and dried on a screen. Since it's not in great shape, I'll start with it.