With the holidays fast approaching, you’re probably thinking about your table settings for the annual family dinner. The holiday dinner is one of your favorite traditions of the season. It’s a time for family and friends to gather together, share stories, and be thankful for their good fortune throughout the year. However, table linens adorned with candles, gravy boats, wine glasses, and children’s plates are bound to see some stains. Here are some tips from a professional dry cleaner on spot cleaning common stains your table linens may encounter this holiday season.

  • Red Wine – An elegant dinner is always made complete with the addition of a full bodied red wine, but red wine is notorious for causing stubborn, highly noticeable stains. If a spill occurs, immediately blot the area with paper towels to absorb any excess liquid. Soak the area in cool water and pre-treat the stain with white vinegar or wine remover. If possible, machine wash your table cloth on the gentlest cycle available on your washing machine. For any reaming stains or for dry clean only tablecloths, take your linens to a professional dry cleaner as soon as possible.
  • Candle wax – While those elegant, tall tapered candles may look majestic all lit up for dinner, the wax can wreak havoc on your table linens. Removing candle wax takes a two prong approach. Start with cold. Rub an ice cube over the wax to freeze and harden it. Then, use a butter knife to gently chip away the wax. You must take extra caution to avoid snagging the table linens. After chipping away most of the wax, cover the spot with a brown paper bag. Using an iron set on medium heat, run the iron over the bag. The iron will heat up any residual wax allowing it to be absorbed by the bag. Never put the iron directly on the wax.
  • Butter – For fresh butter spots, cover the area with salt or artificial sweetener. This will help absorb the grease and keep it from soaking further into the table linens. The follow day, rub the stain with a bit of liquid detergent and launder in your washing machine with the hottest water safe for the fabric.

For more information on removing stubborn stains, contact us. Treating spills immediately can help prevent them from becoming set in stains. For heirloom or antique table cloths, it’s important to consult a professional dry cleaner as soon as possible since attempting to remove spills and stains yourself can lead to further damage of the fabric.