I’m a Sacks Addict

January 20, 2010

No, I said SACKS. Indian rice sacks. French linen flour sacks. Old English wheat sacks. Colourful American ‘grain’ sacks. What-evaaa. I want sacks in the morning, sacks all day long, and sacks every night.

They make such fabulous cushions! Retro, cheery, quirky, recycled, cheap, easy to sew – what’s not to love?! I think my addiction kicked in properly a few weeks ago, when I spotted some VERY cool patterned sacks of Basmati rice for sale in a Halal butcher’s shop in south London. Of course, I like rice, but it was the sack I really wanted!! I bought one (just £8), slung it over my shoulders and trudged home with a tonne of rice on my back. Decanting the rice (into, like, a million Kilner jars) took a while BUT it was worth it – the empty sack is covered in Indian writing and bright colours, and it’s going to make a fantastic cushion!! I think this was all a step too far for the boyfriend. He thinks I am completely mental. And he’s a bit bored of eating rice, too.

Of course, new sacks are all very well. But it’s the vintage ones I really love – particularly the colourful American ones, which often pop up in vintage shops or on ebay. I’ve been hunting for two really gorgeous sacks for ages, and just bought a fabulous pair from Coast and Country Home:

The first one has a pretty orange and brown retro carnation design on it, and comes from Oregon, USA originally. It used to contain bleached pastry flour.

The second one has a lovely ‘Colonial Rose’ design and was used for ‘phosphated’ flour, which doesn’t sound very appetising! I really love this sack, because at some point somebody has traced the sewing pattern for a little girl’s apron onto the back of it, but for some reason (and luckily for me!)  they never got round to cutting it out.

Could this embody the ‘make do and mend’ philosophy any better?! It’s funny that I’m re-using this piece of sacking to make a cushion cover all these years later!

And if you prefer the simple, rustic French linen sack accessories, head to Notonthehighstreet and check out Parna‘s range. Right, it must be time for lunch, now. Basmati rice salad, anyone? – Ellie

6 Responses to “I’m a Sacks Addict”

  1. Patchwork Harmony Says:

    Great post! I’m loving all the sacks! 😉

    I have a sofa covered in vintage grain sacks – looks beautiful, but not so comfy!


  2. Jenna Says:

    Great Article. I have only just found your blog but I will definitely be coming back again! Jen

  3. Karen Cheung Says:

    I’ve been watching eBay for ages looking for vintage sacks to use for things – floor cushions, bags… The photos you’ve posted up are just lovely.

  4. Grace Says:

    What a great idea! Rice is our staple diet and we buy 10kgs of rice every two weeks or so but I never thought of using the sacks for cushions. However, are the ones you use more of a fabric because the ones that I buy are made of some sort of tarp. They aren’t too soft to the touch! Thanks. G

  5. elizabeth Says:

    HI, i love your blog on sacks! I too am addicted to the color and history of them….and the treasure hunt aspect of tracking them down. I live in philadelphia and have seen old sacks which were sold originally with the childs apron pattern sketched on back. It was an added bonus to housewives who bought the flour sacks so that they could finish the flour and then sew up and apron…sot of a twofer [two for one]… thank you for the grrat photos, please post more ! :-))

  6. […] a Sacks Addict, of course I like these industrial-chic cushions with definitions of words such as NEST, LOVE, COSY […]

  7. good idea of the bag sack. I like it. blog is good. can collect various kinds of bags sacks to be something useful, it’s a good idea.

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