Monday, April 16, 2012

How to save an area rug.

     When I spilled a glass of red wine on one of my favorite Homefires area rugs a few weeks ago, I thought I’d have to toss it. Homefires area rugs aren’t machine washable, and even if they were, how would you fit an 8x10 rug into a washing machine?
     Not wanting to throw out such beautiful rug or try to find another one I liked as much, I turned to my arsenal of cleaning supplies. When none of those worked, I spent weeks trying to find another solution, even going as far as the rent a steam cleaner. All these attempts failed.
     When I lamented the loss of such a great rug to my friend Mrs. Main, she laughed and said the solution was so simple! Looking back, I should have gone to her first. If anyone knows how to get stains out of something, its the person with three kids!

Here’s the trick.
1: Blot up the stain as much as possible.
2: Sprinkle the stain with Baking Soda, let stand for 10-15 minutes.
3: Mix together 1 tablespoon baking soda, 1 tablespoon clear dish detergent, and two cups warm water.
4: Soak the stain with the mixture, and then blot up what you can with a clean white cloth.
5: Clean off mixture with cold water and let dry. Don’t worry if there is a faint vinegar smell left, it will dissipate as the carpet dries.

     Mrs. Main let me in on a little secret about vinegar and soap. While soap can be good at cleaning, it’s hard to get 100% out of your carpet. The soap that’s left behind attracts dirt faster than areas without soap which can cause the area to look even more stained over time. That’s where the vinegar comes in. It gets up more than the stain; it also gets up the soap which helps your carpets look cleaner longer.
Now I can keep my prized area rug, and use the current area rug sale as an excuse to buy a second fabulous area rug.