I hand wash and line dry all the vintage linens I purchase before I sell them. I also try to remove any stains or spots.
First I soak them in laundry detergent with a little oxygen booster added. After a few hours I check them to see if there are any spots left. If there are I dry them in the sun and then put lemon juice and salt on the stained areas and hang in the sun for several hours. If the stains are gone I rinse thoroughly and line dry again.
If stains remain my next step is non-chlorine bleach added to the soaking water. I try to stay away from chlorine bleach as it can break down the fragile fibers of the linens and cause little holes to appear in the worn areas.
When you have finally removed all the stains (some stains just won't come out) and your linens are dry, it is time to iron them. I starch and iron all my linens to give them a nice smooth, crisp feeling. Now they are ready to sell (or add to my linen closet, if I just can't part with them)!
Gorgeous tucking on this Victorian slip!