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How to Clean your Drapes

How to clean your drapesMany Curtains and draperies are unnecessarily dry cleaned, a regular soft brushing or careful vacuum cleaning will generally keep curtains looking bright and new for many seasons. When dry cleaning becomes necessary, be sure to use a professional dry cleaner.

Note: Check the manufacturers recommendation for proper care and cleaning of all fabrics.

Machine Washing

First, make sure you inspect your draperies for labels that recommend special care and cleaning methods. Also make sure that the draperies have been measured before cleaning. Next, you will need to remove all drapery hooks or pins and inspect for any sharp objects attached to the draperies or in the washing machine. Load your washer but make sure you do not over load it, this can damage your machine and your drapes. Also, do not use a coin operated machine, they can cause harm to the lining and to the face fabrics as well.

Wash your drapes on a short run without adding moisture: White Spirits, (Petroleum Solvents)- 10-15 Minutes,  Perchloreoethylene- 5 Minutes, or Fluorocarbon- 5 Minutes. The carefully take your drapes our of the washer and tumble dry. (Do not exceed 120 degrees Fahrenheit, (50 degrees Celsius), tumbler temperature. This will damage your fabric.) Hang immediately, and make sure to not leave them in the dryer too long, they will wrinkle quickly. When dry, hang the draperies and allow them to condition at room temperature for a few days. DO NOT!!! Iron the acrylic side of the lining and only use a light cool iron on the fabric side if necessary.

CAUTION: When draperies are cabinet or air dried do not place the coated side over the bar. Place the fabric side over the bar. When the drapery is damp with solvent or water and is folded so that the coated side comes in contact with itself the fabric may self stick while drying and then shred and tear the foam when trying to separate it.

Hand Washing

This cleaning technique should only be used for lining fabrics only. For face fabrics, check manufacturers recommendation for washability. Only smaller curtains should be attempted to be washed by machine.

First, loosen the tape and draw strings, if any, and remove all hooks. Follow any curtain fabric care label recommendations where they are given. Next, use a mild detergent or soap flakes (follow manufacturers recommendations for soap types). Ensure that the flakes or detergent is completely dissolved before you immerse the curtains. Do not rub acrylic foam areas, squeeze them gently. Use hand hot water to rinse thoroughly. Any detergents left in curtains can cause severe deterioration of certain face fabrics so be sure to rinse them carefully. Make sure you do not use bleach in any form.

After washing, gently shake the curtains to get rid of excess water. Do not ring out or squeeze, this could cause tearing of the face fabric. Hang your curtains on a suitable line, from the heading, with the full length and width open, and allow them to drip dry. When curtains need to be placed over a line, make sure that the line is well-padded to avoid a permanent crease and distribute the weight evenly. When the curtains are dry, re-hang them and allow them to condition at room temperature for a few days. 

WARNING: Shrinkage is more likely to occur if curtains are washed. Adjustment for shrinkage may be necessary by un-picking and re-tacking the hems. Angel’s Distributing Inc. provides the highest quality cotton, cotton napped sateens and regular cotton sateen linings for window treatments, from the finest mills in the USA, Rockland Mills, Nationwide Mills and from England, and Edmund Bell LTD.

Dry Cleaning

Dry cleaning is recommended for certain drapery products. Laminated draperies are NOT washable and are dry cleanable only. If dry cleaning does become necessary, BE SURE TO USE A PROFESSIONAL DRY CLEANER. Because coated drapery linings and fabrics are so different from other materials, special care should be exercised to protect them from potential harm.