Opinions/knowledge.. is this VINTAGE elastic?

I picked this up just before the village trashman was pulling in to clean up a bunch of abandoned crafty notions where locals typically do a dumpndriveoff. Ignoring the no dumping sign.

50 feet of this. Would like to sell it online.

But nowhere can I find an image of such a thing wrapped in plastic like this. OR made from mostly nylon.
I am not a sewer so cannot tap into my own experience.

What do you make of this?

thanks for considering my question.

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Non-roll elastic sold in bulk is about $.70 a yard now depending on the manufacturer.

The problem with selling vintage elastic is that rubber degrades over time and loses it’s stretch. A lot of people are hesitant to buy old elastic…I know I am. However, that being said, I just checked my elastic bin and checked all the elastic, even stuff that is 10 years old…it is fine.

Stretch it and see if it bounces back and goes back to the original size. It means it still is good for making PJ’s, etc. Non-roll is perfect for pants, skirts, etc. I have seen it on rolls like that at big warehouse places where they sell to the theater, etc. and the public. Always wrapped in plastic to keep it clean.

That is a good find if it holds up…the RI Textile Company is a known brand for making elastics since 1913. I wonder if the person who dumped it worked there or purchased it when they moved their offices?

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Its older but not yet vintage. These were rolls they produced for certain stores that sold sewing items more like the old 5 and 10’s, Woolworths, kind of those department stores and that had the very small section with maybe some elastics and thread, a few fabric options and generally really crappy yarn LOL. Its intention is so anyone could cut off yardage without the need of a cutting table. They use to have racks where the boxes lined up and you pulled out the desired length and cut here, usually a clerk had to cut it for you or they had scissors on a chain attached to the rack and at the counter they’d count the tick marks to charge for the elastic and the price was marked on it so it could be self service, no need for a fabric cutter to give you a ticket explaining the pricing to the check out. I haven’t seen them in maybe 5 years but a lot of the stores that use to get them have disappeared so I don’t know if its a reflection of RI not producing it or more likely the stores no longer in business to sell it.
Like @AIMR said as well, while I generally don’t go to shops that sell to theaters per say but in the textile districts I do go to you generally can’t purchase by the yard you buy the bolt, so its just not as common as the bolts you see at fabric cutting places and such. And as she stated just see if it stretches, bounces back, doesn’t relax, fray, rip or buckle then its all still good.


We used to have a place in PA that sold lace, elastic, fabric, buttons, etc. in bulk…it was often cheaper to buy the whole spool of lace than one yard at a retail store…that is why I have so much “stash”…I bought spools of a lot of things and buttons by the pound!

It would be interesting to find out the story behind it…the PA place closed about 10 years ago because people were just not into sewing their own stuff…and so many online stores opened up as well…

I do remember places that let you cut your own elastic, ribbon, etc and even had scissors to cut off a sample of fabric…not going to happen in this day and age…


I checked out the stretch power as soon as I got it home. It is fine.
also at the dump site were many rolls of precut braided rug material which I snagged to go along with the stash I already have, ready for next winter’s project.
thanks so much for the feedback!

thanks for all that juicy info.
your description of the old store ways made me so nostagic! I really do miss those humble places

How cool! Is there some sort of place going out of business near you? I can’t believe such waste…surely they could have sold to a secondary market…oh well…your gain!

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Yeah I do the same when COVID hit I started a collective of mask makers because some had some material, some had thread and I had some odd hoard of Elastic no normal human should ever have LOL


lol I sent out so much elastic…for once, I was glad I hoarded elastic…and now that mask making has slowed due to availability, I was sent back fabric, elastic and loads of pre-cut masks from some of the people…I feel like I am back to square one! lol


I was at Wal-Mart yesterday; they now allow fully vaccinated people to enter without masks. I left mine off, but was getting stink eye from other patrons, so I put it on. Peer pressure at work!
Time for mask quilts!


Notions to me are like office supplies I have serious issues with grommets, eyelets, brads you name it! I use to run a cottage bag industry so would semi hoard large quantities of notions one being elastic. It was pretty much depleted during the mask rush! I still have a hoard though