I’ve had way too much fun trolling Etsy for vintage flat sheets. They can be used for about a million different thing, and some are just amazingly pretty and unique.
Even more affordable “Jane Says Vintage” sells some of them already cut up into fat quarters (I want to cry when i see these though, how pretty the whole sheets must have been!). I look mostly for whole ones with no stains. And even the fitted sheets are easy enough to cut and hem or bind. RSW Vintage also has some nice textiles. I’ve had very little luck with textiles in person when out shopping at antique shops, so every few months I will scour Etsy to see whats new!
I use them for creating forts (the best use) for mock picnics and using them for their actual intended purpose as a bed sheet. It usually takes about 2 washes to get out any “old” smells and if you purchase from a good place those smells are very minimal anyway. I often dream of cutting them up into pillowcases or dresses, but don’t usually get that far. Once they become worn you can cut them up and make a quilt!
Shabby Sheets (Beware the bundles may not be *as pictured*)