"They said it couldn't be done--but I did it!"

"They said it couldn't be done--but I did it!"

Joined: May 21st, 2006, 4:46 am

June 16th, 2011, 12:41 am #1

Let's share some tips of things that people don't commonly think can be done.

I discovered that you can take the covers off of upholstered cushions, wash them in the machine in cold water and hang to dry. I have done it successfully (MANY times) with a nylon upholstery fabric with rubberized backing, as well as a cotton blend. The first time I did this was out of desperation, but after that it was routine.

I learned the hard way NOT to dry clean upholstery fabric with rubberized backing--it shredded. If someone tells you this can't be done...they're right! I totally ruined a two-year-old sofa when we were first married.

I recently washed some cushions where the cover couldn't be removed, and it worked fine. I put them in the bathtub, let them soak in cool water, squeezed out the water, rinsed them and squeezed out the water again. I used Simple Green so that it wouldn't suds as much as, say, Tide. They take about 3 days to dry--I put mine on a slatted lawn chair in the shade. I probably would not do this on something that would be expensive to replace if it didn't work, but I've done it to 3 rocking chairs so far where the alternative was to discard the cushions. It has worked fine every time. The fabrics have been nylon, microfiber and one with an unknown fiber content. Don't try to wash any fabric that has acetate in it.
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Joined: June 5th, 2006, 5:33 pm

June 16th, 2011, 1:15 am #2

You can wash most clothing that says dry-clean only, unless it is rayon.

------
The road to success is always under construction.
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Joined: May 21st, 2006, 4:46 am

June 16th, 2011, 3:18 am #3

You can wash rayon, too! I have done it MANY times. Use cool water and hang it to dry. If you hang it outside on a breezy day, all of the wrinkles come out, too.

Don't wash acetate, though!
Last edited by MaxineS on June 16th, 2011, 3:21 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: June 5th, 2006, 5:33 pm

June 16th, 2011, 3:35 am #4

It shrank at least one size. I'll have to remember that about the windy day. I dried it on a hanger and had to iron it, and that made it shiny. I really liked that dress too.

------
The road to success is always under construction.
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Joined: May 24th, 2006, 3:12 pm

June 16th, 2011, 5:55 am #5

Let's share some tips of things that people don't commonly think can be done.

I discovered that you can take the covers off of upholstered cushions, wash them in the machine in cold water and hang to dry. I have done it successfully (MANY times) with a nylon upholstery fabric with rubberized backing, as well as a cotton blend. The first time I did this was out of desperation, but after that it was routine.

I learned the hard way NOT to dry clean upholstery fabric with rubberized backing--it shredded. If someone tells you this can't be done...they're right! I totally ruined a two-year-old sofa when we were first married.

I recently washed some cushions where the cover couldn't be removed, and it worked fine. I put them in the bathtub, let them soak in cool water, squeezed out the water, rinsed them and squeezed out the water again. I used Simple Green so that it wouldn't suds as much as, say, Tide. They take about 3 days to dry--I put mine on a slatted lawn chair in the shade. I probably would not do this on something that would be expensive to replace if it didn't work, but I've done it to 3 rocking chairs so far where the alternative was to discard the cushions. It has worked fine every time. The fabrics have been nylon, microfiber and one with an unknown fiber content. Don't try to wash any fabric that has acetate in it.
This was years ( and more years) ago when I was a caredevil student.
I had a light tan suede handbag that had got really grubby - it had really got beyond being worth spending money on specialist cleaning( and I was a student) so I scrubbed it with laundry powder and a nail brush. I emerged from this lack of care perfectly clean if a little stiff, but it soon softened up again - it got a few more scrubs later too as I remember.
I scrubbed a few pairs of suede shoes too
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Joined: September 24th, 2009, 3:01 pm

June 16th, 2011, 11:49 am #6

Let's share some tips of things that people don't commonly think can be done.

I discovered that you can take the covers off of upholstered cushions, wash them in the machine in cold water and hang to dry. I have done it successfully (MANY times) with a nylon upholstery fabric with rubberized backing, as well as a cotton blend. The first time I did this was out of desperation, but after that it was routine.

I learned the hard way NOT to dry clean upholstery fabric with rubberized backing--it shredded. If someone tells you this can't be done...they're right! I totally ruined a two-year-old sofa when we were first married.

I recently washed some cushions where the cover couldn't be removed, and it worked fine. I put them in the bathtub, let them soak in cool water, squeezed out the water, rinsed them and squeezed out the water again. I used Simple Green so that it wouldn't suds as much as, say, Tide. They take about 3 days to dry--I put mine on a slatted lawn chair in the shade. I probably would not do this on something that would be expensive to replace if it didn't work, but I've done it to 3 rocking chairs so far where the alternative was to discard the cushions. It has worked fine every time. The fabrics have been nylon, microfiber and one with an unknown fiber content. Don't try to wash any fabric that has acetate in it.
oops.

I have cats that pee on stuff, if they'd fit, i'd throw the couch cushions in the washer. (it's been 12 years since i've had to wash a couch cushion in the tub, thank god!)

about the only thing i DON'T throw in the washer are leather shoes. well, I have done it with kid's leather shoes, and as long as you dry them by stuffing them with newspaper, it's worked out just fine.
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Joined: May 25th, 2006, 10:01 pm

June 16th, 2011, 1:26 pm #7

Let's share some tips of things that people don't commonly think can be done.

I discovered that you can take the covers off of upholstered cushions, wash them in the machine in cold water and hang to dry. I have done it successfully (MANY times) with a nylon upholstery fabric with rubberized backing, as well as a cotton blend. The first time I did this was out of desperation, but after that it was routine.

I learned the hard way NOT to dry clean upholstery fabric with rubberized backing--it shredded. If someone tells you this can't be done...they're right! I totally ruined a two-year-old sofa when we were first married.

I recently washed some cushions where the cover couldn't be removed, and it worked fine. I put them in the bathtub, let them soak in cool water, squeezed out the water, rinsed them and squeezed out the water again. I used Simple Green so that it wouldn't suds as much as, say, Tide. They take about 3 days to dry--I put mine on a slatted lawn chair in the shade. I probably would not do this on something that would be expensive to replace if it didn't work, but I've done it to 3 rocking chairs so far where the alternative was to discard the cushions. It has worked fine every time. The fabrics have been nylon, microfiber and one with an unknown fiber content. Don't try to wash any fabric that has acetate in it.
I've washed rayon before and had it turn out okay, but I've washed other rayon items and had them shrink terribly. I don't buy rayon at all anymore. It doesn't breathe AT ALL, and I get HOT in it.

When I buy something used or insanely cheap and it says dry clean only, I wash it first. I figure I'm not out much if it does get ruined, and the cost of dry cleaning will make it to where it's not worth keeping. I do not buy dry clean only stuff brand new, except for suits for Chris once every 20 years or so! I just don't buy it if I can't care for it at home. Period.

I wish I could toss my dogs in the washer. They rolled in the chicken poop. Ugh. Baths all around.

Blessings,

Bethann
Matthew 6:33
http://gettingtheresimply.blogspot.com/

"Live in such a way that you would not be ashamed to sell your parrot to the town gossip." --Will Rogers
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Joined: May 28th, 2006, 3:48 am

June 16th, 2011, 2:29 pm #8

I don't buy anything new that is dry clean only. Anything secondhand with a dry clean label goes in the washer. I've only ever ruined one item. It was a dress I bought new and I think it was acetate. I washed it in the bathtub and literally watched it shrink right before my eyes. I've washed lots of rayon without trouble.

I've washed suede work gloves in the washer. It was either that or throw them away. I hung them to dry and they were a little stiffer but clean. I put running shoes in the washer and hang them to dry. I've put polyester (I think) purses in the wash and they were fine.
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Joined: May 19th, 2006, 4:19 pm

June 16th, 2011, 3:22 pm #9

It shrank at least one size. I'll have to remember that about the windy day. I dried it on a hanger and had to iron it, and that made it shiny. I really liked that dress too.

------
The road to success is always under construction.
to do it inside out!
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