I love scouting the second hand stores for old woolen garments. I occasionally will pick up an amazing jacket, but my favorite garments are large skirts. You can get the most fabric out of them, and they are so easier to cut apart.
Most of the time I find neutral-toned fabrics with great chevron, or checkered patterns.
I love the neutrals very much because they over-dye so beautifully, and give me lots of color options. The neutrals immediately give the over-dyed fabric a vintage feel. It makes them perfect for using in primitive rug hooking. Add to that, a little bit of handcutting, making the strips of wool a little irregular...pure magic!
Sometimes, on my scouting trips, I find an amazing vintage wool skirt. This is exactly what happened last Friday. Even before I got to the skirt section, I spotted the skirt from afar. I kept my fingers crossed that it would be 100% wool. Just imagine my joy, when as I was looking for a tag inside the skirt, I saw the Pendleton Woolen Mills label!
The colors are fabulously bright, cobalt blue, kelly green, with thin lines of deep pink and a pale purple. Of course, I will probably rarely use it as is, because I tend to favor slightly muted colors. But I will definitely save an undyed piece to put as a splash of unexpected color in a design, and will overdye the rest.
I am sure you can sure you can tell I really love looking for old fabrics. I wonder if you do too? I might stop by my local second hand stores today on my way to the post office. I am already dreaming of what I could find!