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How to Clean Curtains & Drapes

Jan 19, 2021

Cleaning curtains and drapes

Here at Port & Bay, we love a fresh and clean home! This blog post will go over some best practices when it comes to cleaning your curtains and drapes. Just like sheets, bath towels, rugs, and other soft goods in your home, curtains can collect dust, dirt, dander, and absorb smells. If you've been forgetting to add window treatments to your cleaning routine, now's the perfect time!

Putting aside time to clean your curtains and drapes will help them last longer and can improve the air quality in your home. Ready to give your window treatments a spa day?

Check the Label

The first and most important step is to check the care label from the manufacturer on the product. Professional dry cleaning is the safest route for certain materials such as wool, silk and cashmere, or if your curtains/drapes are lined, pleated, or heavily structured.

Do a Spot Test

If the care label says to use a washing machine or hand-washing method to clean your curtains, you’ll want to do a spot test on an inconspicuous area first. Test an out-of-sight area of your curtains with some mild detergent and water, and let it dry completely to determine if that method is safe to use. If the color begins to bleed, or you notice discoloration when your test area dries, take your curtains to a professional cleaner instead.

Cleaning Curtains or Drapes in the Washing Machine

Remove all hardware and shake your curtains or drapes outside if possible to help remove any dust. Follow the directions on your care tag. If there aren't any directions, wash your curtains or drapes the same way you would wash delicates. Lace and sheer curtains should be washed by hand to prevent any damage. If you're using a washing machine, select the gentle cycle and cold water, and use a mild laundry detergent. Make sure your curtains or drapes have plenty of room in the washing machine so that dirt can be lifted away as well as to prevent excessive wrinkling. Tumble dry your curtains or drapes on low heat or hang them up to let them air dry. Iron your curtains or drapes as needed, and be sure to use the correct fabric setting/temperature.

Tips for Keeping your Curtains or Drapes Cleaner for Longer

Don't forget to regularly dust your curtain rods and windows to help keep dust and dirt away from your curtains or drapes. In between washes, use the brush attachment on your vacuum to gently clean your window treatments. If your vacuum doesn't have a brush attachment, you can also give your curtains or drapes a good shake to loosen any settled dust and dirt. Allow dust and dirt to settle before cleaning the rest of the room. Even if your window treatments don't look dirty or dinghy, they can still be harboring dust, dirt and other allergens or bacteria. Making sure your curtains or drapes are clean will help improve the air quality of your home and extend the life of your window treatments. Note, curtains and drapes that have been hanging up for a long period of time and had no cleaning performed on them will not always react well to being cleaned and can fade or shrink excessively once exposed to the cleaning process. If you are planning on cleaning your curtains, do so within the first year or so. Looking for something new? Sometimes there's no fixing old and dinghy window treatments, but no need to stress! At Port & Bay, we can help you find the perfect window treatments to match your style and budget. Visit our website to shop our wide selection of options, and don't hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.

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