As we enjoy the cooler months, you can be sure that with all of the extra time spent indoors, your home upholstery is taking a beating from all of the debris brought inside. Dirt and dust are inevitable arch enemies of those pristine white curtains and your cherished beige sofa. And the tan carpets, forget about it – they do not stand a chance.
With a little effort and the use of the proper accessories, along with the use of the right products, you can keep your home upholstery looking and smelling like new, throughout the year.
Here are just a few tricks and helpful tips to assist you with all of those new stains that are bound to appear:
- Clean it up: Arguably two of the most effective stain removers on the market are products a lot of homes are already stocked with – baby wipes and hairspray! Believe it or not, hairspray is like a miracle remedy for pen or marker stains. Keep a bottle handy under the sink and when the time comes spritz a little on your sofa, curtain or carpet stain, blot and repeat. You will be impressed at its effectiveness, for sure! Alternatively, baby wipes work like a charm to remove any surface marks and blot to absorb any liquids and stains.
- Slip covers: We are not talking about the hideous plastic covers from the 1980’s. Sofa covers have come a long way from those days, with designer stores such as Hub Furniture getting on board to embrace the need for washable covers. The Redondo sofa by Patricia Urquiola is wonderful example – cocoon style seating with beautiful curved shapes and removable quilted cover which is stylish yet practical. However, if you are down at your beach house, casual linen or cotton slip covers are also a fantastic way to cover an old couch and allow you to enjoy your holidays without worrying about any stains that might occur. Armrest covers are another simple and effective technique in protecting your precious furniture. They absorb the wear from constant handling and can blend subtly in with the sofa or add a pop of colour and pattern, which ever you prefer.
- Clean regularly: Make it a point to dedicate a few minutes at least once a week to check your upholstery for unnoticed stains or dirt. If you can stay on top of stain removal as the stains appear, then things should never get so far out of hand that you have to purchase new pieces. The longer a stain has time to set, the harder it will ultimately be to remove. So after that fantastic dinner party, don’t forget to check if any little accidents happened that you weren’t aware of!
- Protect: What is it that they say in the world of football? “The best defence is a good offence?” Or something like that. Well, when it comes to keeping your upholstery looking like new, this saying rings true. Protect your fabrics with a product like Scotchguard, as it works like a new age invisible plastic slip cover. Adding a stain resistant layer over your precious fabrics is the key to keep them from acquiring new stains and in new condition. Especially dining chairs, which are prone to greasy hands, wine spills and food stains. Most stores offer this protection when you purchase a new chair or a sofa, so always enquire if this is an add-on option available.
- DIY stain remover: It is probably easier than you think to make your own miracle stain remover and the best part is that you likely already have all of the ingredients that you need lying around the house. For an effective carpet, curtain or fabric stain remover mix together: 1 teaspoon of Ammonia, 1 teaspoon of vinegar, ½ cup of liquid or powdered detergent and warm water. Mix with a hand mixer or blender until a thick froth forms. Use just the froth to scrub the stain until gone, vacuum, let dry and pat yourself on the back.
- Dry-cleaning: Curtains are often the most neglected items in your interiors. They are the barrier between inside and outside accumulating dirt and dust, but are rarely cleaned. Vents, fans, heaters, window cracks and drafts all contribute to particles circulating in the air, which can land on curtains. So it’s wise to frequently dust the curtains to remove this surface layer. If your curtains are in desperate need of a freshen up we recommend dry cleaning by a professional who specialises in curtain cleaning, not just clothes, so do your research first.
- Rug care: Our good friends at Behruz Studio are experts in their field and know how to take special care of rugs and carpets. From spot cleaning tips for specific stains, washing, vacuuming, underlay, storage and pest infections, please visit Behruz Studio’s website for all of their expert cleaning instructions http://behruzstudio.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/09/CarpetCareStainRemoval.pdf
- Anti-stick cleaner: So we’ve saved the best for last! Nanokote is a wonderful new product from Reese, treating glass and ceramics using nanotechnology to repel dirt and water. Scratch and abrasion resistant it can be used on ceramic wall and floor tiles, glass splash backs, shower screens, basins, baths and toilets. The invisible coating stops the corrosion process, especially common on shower screens. With a single application to new glass lasting up to 10 years or 3-5 years for existing glass. Cutting cleaning time by up to 90% this product is a winner.
It can sometimes be discouraging to keep your home looking new and smelling fresh, especially during the colder months. Use the above tips to help you stay on top of these chores and you should be able to manage keeping home fabrics looking and smelling like-new, year round.