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Wondering what to do with a feather mattress.

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default Wondering what to do with a feather mattress.

Post by Jaded Green on 2nd November 2011, 1:13 pm

I've been helping my parents turning out this morning and discovered that what I thought was a spare duvet is in fact an elderly feather mattress. It must be about 50 - 60 years old, if not more. The ticking cover is old but serviceable, the thick cotton cover on top of that has a few holes and some (not sinister) stains

I used it as a spare bed before I was married - it rolled up when not in use and and could be put out on the floor.

Does anyone have any idea what to do with it?

I thought I would try offering it on Freecycle, but I don't hold out much hope. On the other hand, I think I've seen mention on another forum of someone who sleeps on a featherbed to keep warm?

Or is so old that the best thing to do is to take it straight to the dump?
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Post by MrsC on 2nd November 2011, 2:55 pm

I'd certainly say it's worth trying it on Freecycle first. At our local tip they strip down all mattresses to recycle them properly.

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Post by Jaded Green on 2nd November 2011, 3:02 pm

Thanks. It is a very basic feather bed, but I would have thought the feathers would compost!
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Post by Wilhelm Von Rhomboid on 2nd November 2011, 5:01 pm

I would use it as a topper. Fantastic in winter. Would be a crime to bin it or compost it.

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Post by Jaded Green on 2nd November 2011, 7:11 pm

I was beginning to wonder about that - Miss JG could do with a topper, but I don't think she would agree to it because it is feather.

I'm glad I'm not the only one who thinks it would be a crime to throw it out.

I think I will try it on Freecycle
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Post by Wilhelm Von Rhomboid on 2nd November 2011, 7:57 pm

Jaded Green wrote:but I don't think she would agree to it because it is feather.

eh? why on earth not? What better filling could there be? Even if she is a vegetationist, it is geese that perished 50 years ago. It is not as if it is creating demand.

I'll have it off you if you are going to freecycle it, JG. Can't be that heavy to post.

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Post by Jaded Green on 2nd November 2011, 8:28 pm

I'll weigh it and let you know.

And I agree about the elderly feathers. There are a couple of 50 year old fur coats in the wardrobe too. I think the squirrel one is horrible, but when I lived in a very cold flat with a couple of friends who wore fur coats, I borrowed my mum's coat from the 1950s!
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Post by Wilhelm Von Rhomboid on 2nd November 2011, 9:34 pm

Oh don't get me started on the PETA hardliners who insist that vintage furs have to be destroyed. I cannot think of anything more wasteful of the life of the animals. I have got into producing furs and hides this year, mainly because we have a lot of skins and pelts from the rabbits and deer we eat. We could chuck them into landfill or I could make the into useful garments/blankets etc. Which is more sustainable?

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Post by Jaded Green on 2nd November 2011, 10:18 pm

Can I hijack my own thread to ask what you do with the pelts Billy? Very Happy
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Post by Wilhelm Von Rhomboid on 2nd November 2011, 11:24 pm

Well tbh I am still learning how to make proper furs. Of the 80 or so I have experimented with in batches so far, I have had limited success. They have all cured properly but most are far too rigid and a few have shed their fur.

My original aim was to do something with the rather than them goinig to waste. My goal now is to make Ojibwe woven fur blankets for the children. (and eventually us): you roll each pelt into a rope and thread them together, then when you have a hugely long rope, weave them on a frame into a blanket. Can you imagine how warm and snuggly a woven fur blanket would be? And all the animals are dead already so it is just using pelts that would otherwise go to waste.

I have a number a of deerskins I have preserved as well but have yet to find a use for. I am sure there will be though, and it is better than just chucking it away.

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Post by Chilli-head on 3rd November 2011, 10:07 am

Wilhelm Von Rhomboid wrote:
I have a number a of deerskins I have preserved as well but have yet to find a use for. I am sure there will be though, and it is better than just chucking it away.

Lederhosen ? Or a rather eccentric hat ?
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Post by Dandelion on 3rd November 2011, 4:34 pm

Completely agree about not wasting things. I was wondering if there was any way of cleaning the feather mattress - are dust mites worse in feather filled things, or are they attracted to synthetic materials more?
My mother told me that one of her relatives left a feather bed (which presumably is the same thing as a feather mattress) to one of the family in his will. They must have been prized possessions (unless my family is just wierd.....)

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Post by Jaded Green on 4th November 2011, 12:39 pm

Actually I think it is usually referred to as "feather bed" by the family.

I think it may be 70 years old.

Billy, it's at my mum and dad's so haven' weighed it yet but am wondering about putting it in a suitcase on wheels and getting a train may be good delivery method!
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Post by MrsC on 5th November 2011, 8:01 am

Billy - do PETA really say that old furs should be destroyed? Yikes! Totally agree with making the most of what you have and not having waste so animals that are for meat it makes sense to try to do something with the skins.

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Post by Dandelion on 7th November 2011, 7:40 pm

I was talking to my mother about feather mattresses yesterday - she could remember sleeping on one as a child and says that they are very comfortable and warm - she described it as 'sinking into a nest'! She did say that you have to 'knead' them every day - you go over the surface of the mattress kneading the feathers just as if you're kneading bread. This stops them clumping, and keeps the mattress even.

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Post by mr_sfstk8d on 7th November 2011, 9:00 pm

Sounds like a lot of work.

And AWESOME!!
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