Fabric Cleaning & Maintenance

October 25th, 2016

Regular maintenance and cleaning of furniture upholstery is important to help maintain the upholstery’s appearance and help reduce the long term build-up of soil on the fabric’s surface.
Vacuuming with a proper upholstery attachment should be done regularly and thoroughly to remove air-borne dust and lint, and any spots and stains should be promptly treated.
Cleaning periodically removes accumulated grime to retain a fabric’s original appearance as much as possible. Loose cushions should be turned and rotated to equalize wear and soiling levels.

Any Spills and stains should be treated as soon as possible with the following spot cleaning techniques. Gently scrape any soil or mop any liquid from the surface of the fabric. Use of soap or detergent with water should be approached with caution since overzealous rinsing to remove soap residue may result in over-wetting, watermarking and possible wetting of substructure (this may create other stains or damage).

1. For non-oil-based stains
Blot stain with a soft towel or scrape away the substance. Pre-test the cleaning method on a hidden part of the furniture, using warm water and Sard Wonder Soap (this is a bar of soap available from most supermarkets). Mix a small amount of soap and warm water solution and apply to the stain, rubbing gently, and blot dry with a clean towel. Apply cool water (preferably rain or distilled water) and blot dry again, then work out from the centre of the stain. Dry quickly to prevent rings forming using a hair dryer or talcum powder. It is generally preferable to clean whole panels of fabric in this way rather than trying to spot clean specific areas. This process should remove most general stains.

2. For oil-based stains
We recommend Murlex, a dry-cleaning solvent which should remove oil based stains from the furniture. Again, apply a similar process as above and ensure the cleaning is done in full panels – not spot cleaned. Murlex is available from most chemist shops.
After the moisture has been blotted up, dab at the stain with a clean cloth dampened in rubbing alcohol. Then blot repeatedly with liquid detergent mixed with cool water. Blot dry with a towel. Dab again with clear cool water and blot dry.

Mix one teaspoon of ammonia in a cup of cold water and apply it sparingly to the spot. Blot with a clean towel. Repeat the procedure until the spot is gone. Then dab the area with cool water and blot. Wait 15 minutes and moisten the area again with white distilled vinegar. Blot thoroughly with a dry towel.
Rub an ice cube over the gum to harden in, and then scrape off the excess with a dull knife. To remove what’s left, use dry cleaning fluid.

CHOCOLATE (and other soft candy)
This is a combination greasy/non-greasy stain. First go over the spot, after scraping excess away, with cool water mixed with a liquid detergent, blot thoroughly, and then clean with dry cleaning fluid.

Sponge with warm water. Apply warm glycerine, leave for 30 minutes. Flush out with water and dry quickly.

Sponge with warm water. Apply warm glycerine. Leave for 30 minutes. Flush out with water and dry quickly.

After excess is blotted up or scraped away, blot the spot with cool water. If a stain remains, add liquid detergent and a drop of vinegar to the water. Dab the spot with this and blot until there’s no trace of a stain. Then go over the area lightly with clear water to remove traces of vinegar.

GREASE (including hair grease and oil)
Scrape away excess if necessary and then dab repeatedly at the stain with dry cleaning fluid. If any stain remains, go over the area with a lukewarm mixture of liquid detergent and water. Always make sure you use a clean portion with a clean cloth moistened with cool clear water.

Moisten with warm glycerine, leave for 10 minutes. Apply liquid detergent and brush lightly. Flush out with water and dry quickly.

Blot or scrape away the excess, then take a clean soft cloth and blot. Apply clear cool water to the area, blotting frequently. Then blot with a detergent solution to which you’ve added a small amount of ammonia. Blot dry and wait a few minutes. Go over the area with dry cleaning fluid, blot dry, and finally, blot the area lightly with a cloth moistened with rubbing alcohol.

Scrape away excess and apply cool water mixed with liquid detergent, blotting frequently with a dry cloth so you don’t saturate the fabric. Let this dry and then go over any remaining stain with dry cleaning fluid. Blot dry.

Sponge with water, add warm glycerine and work into stain. Flush out with water and dry.

Apply liquid paraffin to loosen the stain, and then sponge with dry cleaning fluid.
It is especially important to treat this stain right away, before the urine dries. Otherwise, the urine may react with the fabric dyes and cause permanent discolouration. First, dab at the stain with a solution of white vinegar and water, blot dry, and then apply a mixture of liquid detergent and cool water, blotting frequently and with a dry cloth to avoid saturating the fabric. Finally, dab the spot with clear cool water and blot thoroughly.

Blot thoroughly and then dampen the entire spot with clear white vinegar and wait a few minutes. When the area is dry, moisten it again with clear water, blotting with a dry cloth after every application of the damp cloth. If the fabric is pile, brush with the pile when it is dry.

Rub with lemon before sponging with warm water. Apply small quantity of detergent with clean cloth. Blot stain then remove soapy residue with cloth wrung out in warm water and white vinegar solution (1/3 vinegar to 2/3 water).

Curtaining velvet needs care in handling and use, and window fittings coming in contact with the curtain should be avoided. Also stiff brushing or strong vacuum cleaning on the reverse side of the velvet can pull at the pile. Draw cords or other methods of drawing without handing the curtain itself are recommended, as grasping, particularly with fingernails, can cause crushing and actual damage. Velvet curtains should be dry-cleaned.


Please Note The information in this section is provided in good faith.
Instyle Seating accepts no responsibility for any claim arising from the treatments proposed.
We recommend that before proceeding to clean any stain, the chosen cleaning method be tested on a concealed area to ensure that it has no adverse effect on the upholstery.