Thrift Style, an exhibition from the collection of the Historic Costume and Textile Museum (HCTM) of Kansas State University, explores the reuse of feed sacks to make clothing and other household objects. The exhibition illuminates how "upcycling" of these bags mutually benefited 20-th century consumers and businesses, an example of past ingenuity that can inform today's efforts toward sustainability.
The collection of vintage feed and flour sacks showcases sacks donated to the HCTM by Richard D. Rees. Richard's parents, Leonard A. and Beatrice Rees, owned a Coffeyville farm supply store. Inspired by his family's ownership of the supply store, and the many patterned fabric feed sacks he carried to customers' vehicles, Richard began collecting vintage feed and flour sacks from Kansas mills and bag manufacturers.
The Rees gift honors the memory of Leonard and Beatrice Rees and Richard's late wife Janet. Richard is still in search of feed sacks like those that were sold at Rees' Westside Farm Supply.
The Marianna Kistler Beach Museum of Art is located on the campus of Kansas State University in Manhattan, Kansas. The museum offers free admission and parking. Hours are Tues., Wed., Fri. 10-5, Thurs. 10-8 and Sat. 11-4.