Attractive window treatments finish off your home’s interior design like artfully applied icing on a cake. The right drapery fabric can infuse your interior space with color, warmth, texture, and style. When you choose draperies that complement your decor, you find they not only energize your space but also contribute to the homey feeling that you love.
Because finishing touches make all the difference, you’ll want to keep your home’s draperies clean and fresh.
Pollen, dust, pet dander, odors, and smoke can settle into your drapery fabric, so periodic cleaning is essential. Researching the best way to clean your draperies is a wise thing to do before jumping into your cleaning project.
Having your draperies professionally cleaned is the easiest path to take. Dry cleaning can cost from $1 to $5 per foot. Therefore, one 8′ wide drapery panel can cost from $8 to $40 dollars for dry cleaning.
Some professionals offer onsite steam cleaning in a range between $2 and $7 per drapery foot. Additional fees or minimum payments for onsite services can range from $100 to $200.
The high cost of professional cleaning might make you want to invest your time and energy in a DIY drapery cleaning project. Read on for some tips to successfully clean your home’s draperies.
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Drapery Dry Cleaning
Initially, before starting your DIY drapery cleaning, you have to consider the fabric that your draperies are made from. If it is a “dry clean only” type of fabric, then you will get the bests results by paying to have your draperies professionally dry cleaned. Additionally, draperies with stitched-in pleats or swags should always be dry cleaned, not machine washed.
If “dry clean only” draperies are machine washed, the fabric might fade, shrink, or pill. Especially if you have a sizable investment in your draperies, it is best to leave the cleaning to the professionals. Shop around your area for the best deal from a reputable dry-cleaning business.
Some dry-cleaning companies will pick up the draperies from your home and deliver them to you after cleaning them off-site. Other dry-cleaning businesses will require that you do the drop-off and pick-up.
To stretch out the time between dry cleanings, try these tips.
- Spot clean any obvious dirty spots on your draperies.
- Vacuum draperies from top to bottom with a long-handled extension on your vacuum cleaner.
- Take draperies down and shake them outdoors.
If you’re brave and want to machine wash your “dry clean only” draperies, follow these tips.
- Wash in cold water.
- Use mild detergent.
- Wash on the “delicate” or “gentle” cycle.
- Dry flat or hang to dry.
Drapery Steam Cleaning
Another option for cleaning your draperies might be steam cleaning. Before trying this method, check the fabric label to be sure it is not heat-sensitive. Try a small section in an inconspicuous place before you proceed with steam cleaning the entire panel.
Steam cleaning can be a DIY project. Use a home steam-cleaning machine with a handheld attachment for cleaning draperies.
Hold the attachment up to the drapery, and the steam will cause dirt, dust, and pollutants to release from the fibers of the fabric.
Before engaging the professionals, you can also consider these tips :
- Determine if your draperies will hold up to the heat of steam cleaning.
- Shop around the best professional cleaners in your area for a good deal.
- Be sure to check references and reviews for peace of mind.
Drapery Machine Washing
If your draperies are made from washable machine fabric, you’ll have no problems doing a DIY cleaning job. All you need to do is just follow the washing instructions that came with your drapes.
Even when draperies are made from machine-washable fabrics, you should use care when washing and drying them. Here are some helpful tips.
- Check your draperies’ construction. If they have stitched-in pleats or swags, take them to a dry cleaner.
- Check if your draperies are lined. Even if the drapery fabric is machine washable, the lining might shrink.
- Machine wash in cold or cool water.
- Wash on a gentle cycle.
- Hang to dry away from the sun to avoid fading.
- After most of the water is removed in the spin cycle, you can hang draperies back in their places at the windows to dry. Place towels on the floor if you think they might drip.
- If draperies need ironing, use the coolest setting possible.
Because they are an integral part of your home’s decor, your draperies deserve excellent care. Take care of the draperies in your home, and they will give you years of service.
Lastly, remember to always base your cleaning decisions on the fabric type and style construction of your draperies. Drapery cleaning can be a simple DIY project, or it might be best left to the professionals. Make this determination by considering the tips offered here.