How to Remove Stains From Old Quilts

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Things You'll Need

  • Color-safe mild laundry detergent

  • Sponge

  • Spray bottle

  • Dishtowel

Image Credit: Images

Older quilts, especially those that were handmade, can be very fragile and require special attention when cleaning, storing and using them. One common problem with older quilts is damage from attempted stain removal with harsh chemicals or aggressive scrubbing. If you have a stain on your quilt, you will need to familiarize yourself with the safest way to remove the stain without damaging the quilt material, color or pattern.


Step 1

Mix a cup of warm water with 1/2 teaspoon of a color-safe, mild laundry detergent.

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Step 2

Place a small amount of the solution onto the stain, and rub it in with a clean, dry sponge. Rub only hard enough to spread the detergent over the whole stain and gently work it into the quilt fibers.


Step 3

Fill a spray bottle with plain tap water and spritz the stained area with it to remove all of the detergent.

Step 4

Pat the wet spot with a dry dishtowel to soak up the excess water after each spritzing.


Step 5

Allow your quilt to hang dry, and check the spot once it is completely dried.

Step 6

Consider covering the spot with a new quilt square (similar fabric and color), embroidered design or iron-on patch if the spot does not come out.


The stain is not guaranteed to come out, and it may spread after repeated attempts to remove it.


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