Velvet has a reputation as being one of the most luxurious fabrics out there and with good reason. It is beautifully soft to the touch and can be used to craft some absolutely beautiful creations.
Unfortunately this quality comes at something of a price, as the fabric is also rather difficult to care form, which can lead to some problems when it comes time to clean it or if you need to store it properly.
With that in mind, here are a couple of tips to consider when you are cleaning velvet to make sure you get the absolute most out of the fabric.
It may seem like something of a moot point, but before you do anything with your velvet be sure to read any manufacturer instructions that you have available to you. If it is an item of clothing, most good manufacturers will include a label telling you how best to wash it.
Bear in mind that, whether you are talking about fabrics or full items of clothing, different types of velvet require different cleaning methods. Crushed velvet can be put in the washing machine, but fine velvet needs to be dry cleaned. If you are unsure don’t take the risk and simply ask a professional dry cleaner.
Steam rather than iron
Never, ever iron velvet. The weight of your iron will cause a multitude of problems with the fabric and will generally wind up leaving a mark no matter how lightly you press. Furthermore, as velvet is quite a fine fabric, if you do iron it there is a high probability that you will scorch it and make it completely unusable.
Instead, try to pick up a handheld steamer. It doesn’t take much to get creases out of velvet and a steamer will ensure you are putting no weight on the fabric and there is no risk of burning it. Just be sure to avoid getting it wet wherever possible.
Value your local dry cleaner
If you scorch your velvet then there may be no hope left, but if there are stubborn stains or creases that you simply can’t get out your local dry cleaner may well be able to help. They will have tools at their disposal that aren’t necessarily available to you and will be able to advise if a piece is lost or if something can be done to salvage it.
Shaken, not blotted
Accidents happen so when they do be sure that you handle them correctly. If you happen to spill something on your velvet DO NOT blot the stain. This will simply spread it and potentially cause damage to the fabric. Instead, give it a good shake to get rid of any excess moisture and then take it to a professional to get the stain out.
Finally, storing velvet properly is important. Don’t fold the fabric, as it will crease easily and, if the crease is especially stubborn, you will run into problems getting those creases out. Wherever possible hang the fabric up and give it plenty of room so that it is in perfect condition when you come to use it.
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