Since I wanted something a little shabby chic for the room, I gathered all of the white linens I had that could fit. Unfortunately, I needed to get new sheets, since I just didn't have anything in that size, white or otherwise. And when I put the old pillowcases on the very white sheets, things were NOT looking good. I didn't take a picture of it, sadly. But it's all for the best. I don't need proof of how shabby--not chic--those pillowcases looked.
After doing a little research in the best way to brighten things up, I came across some advice that called for a boiling distilled white vinegar solution (one cup vinegar in a large pot; not very scientific, I know). I let things boil and then soak overnight.
When I woke up, the situation was not any better. In fact, things might have been worse. The corners and edges of the cases were sparkling, but the dull centers were still dull, and more noticeably so for the contrast.
Not one to give up easily, I searched more and came across review after review about how great oxygen bleaches are. And with the paltry $2 pricetag, I figured I'd give it a go. I tossed in a scoop into the already-boiling water and got a fun bit of hissing and steam, which kinda made me feel like a witch at a cauldron.
Then the sheets went into my brew, which I let soak for a few hours. This time, when I came back, I had more hope. The color was even, and starting to brighten already. I tossed them into the dryer, and when they were done, I was nearly giddy.
This is what I'm working with now:
Clearly I still need a lot more before this room is done. First on the list is a comforter. Second is an army of pillows. Third is a guest to let me know how well the room functions. I'll keep you posted with how things go.