This is a fairly old, embroidered, vintage pillow cover that has been in our family. It has been in my pile of semi-interesting things that need "over-hauled", for awhile. My initial reaction to it was, "mahh, it's not really our 'taste'..." Though Strapping Young Lad's interest in it, sparked me into motion.
The blanket stitch at the edges was in rough shape, and it had some stains and a small tear. From my "research" on the internet, restoring a vintage linen is time-intensive. I went part of the way there to "not-perfect", but "quite-good-enough."
According to my findings, vintage linens can soak for up to a week. Which I did. I also gave it a blurb of dish detergent and a rinse with vinegar in the water. That may be a no-no, but the piece turned out very much "refreshed." To finish off it's long bath, I laid it out to dry on a clean patch of grass in the sun; which is something I read about in Mary Jane's Farm magazine for cleaning a delicate vintage quilt.
The stains are much lesser. I backed the whole pillowcase with a terracotta fabric, and the other side of the pillow is a textured cream fabric. And I just sewed over the hand-sewn blanket stitch in machine-done white blanket stitch.
And there it is.