More Than A Sack Of Potatoes: The 411 On Cleaning Your Burlap Window Treatments

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More Than A Sack Of Potatoes: The 411 On Cleaning Your Burlap Window Treatments

24 May 2016
 Categories: Home & Garden, Articles


From country-inspired décor and vintage accessories to a rustic-themed home that is casual and comfortable, burlap is an excellent option to complement many decorating styles. Burlap is made from jute fibers, which are resistant to tearing and weathering, so it is a strong material to use around your home in a variety of ways. The light and airy construction of burlap also makes it a good fabric choice for your window treatments, since it allows a small amount of natural light to come into your home. Whether you have dressed your windows in lined burlap drapes for privacy and energy efficiency or have added a little style and texture with valances, protecting the look and strength of your burlap window treatments with require proper cleaning and care.

Light Dusting

Over time, light dust, hair, dirt, and other debris can build up on your burlap curtains and valances, so a periodic dusting will be necessary. This is an easy process that will only require your vacuum and a handheld brush attachment. A hard-bristled brush and the hard suction of the vacuum may cause the jute fibers of the burlap to de-thread and unravel lightly, so use a soft-bristled brush attachment only.

With the window treatments still hanging on their rod, begin vacuuming the burlap window treatments using long strokes of your brush attachment. Work your way down the entire length of the drapes. When vacuuming a valance, begin on one side and work your way down and then across the window treatment.

Hand Washing

In many cases, your burlap window treatments will require a more involved cleaning. Unfortunately, washing burlap in your washing machine is not ideal, since normal wash cycles can wrinkle and unravel the material. If you notice a heavier residue on the burlap curtains, complete the following steps to wash by hand:

  1. Fill a sink or your bathtub with cold water. Do not use warm or hot water, since the higher temperature may cause the burlap to shrink.
  2. Add ¼ cup of powdered laundry detergent to the water and mix. 
  3. Place the burlap window treatment into the tub and swirl it around in the soapy solution.
  4. Allow the curtain or valance to soak for 5 minutes.
  5. Use your fingertips to scrub the soapy solution into heavily-soiled areas of your burlap window treatment.
  6. Rinse the window treatment under the faucet using cold water.
  7. Place the burlap curtain or valance on a flat surface covered in towels or hang on a rack to dry.
  8. Once dry, hang the window treatments back onto their rods.

Stain and Odor Removal

If stains have developed on your burlap curtains, consider using natural ingredients to remove these imperfections. In a bottle, combine 2 cups of water and 1/4 cup of baking soda. Shake the bottle to mix. 

Cover a flat surface with a towel and lay the window treatment on top. Spray the baking soda and water mix onto the stain and use your fingertips to scrub the solution into the spot. Allow it to sit for a few minutes before rinsing under your faucet with cold water. Hang the burlap curtain or valance on a rack to dry before rehanging on the rod. 

Your burlap window treatments will always have the classic jute odor. While the fragrance appeals to many, the jute smell may not be a pleasant aroma to you and your family. Thankfully, you can decrease the strong jute fragrance by washing the burlap by hand periodically. In addition, consider spritzing the burlap window treatment with a fabric freshener spray or perfume.

With a casual, comfortable appeal and an intense durability, the benefits of burlap for your window treatments are easy to see. Using this guide, you will understand the proper techniques to clean your burlap curtains and valances. 

Talk with an interior designer or other home decor specialists or click here for more info about using burlap in the home and maintaining its appearance. 

About Me
the things we use to clean our homes

We rely on the tools that we need to keep our homes clean to work as they should when we go to use them. Unfortunately, things like vacuum cleaners and rug scrubbers tend to break at the most inconvenient times. Do you know what to do if your vacuum cleaner's belt slips, the filter clogs or it just won't turn on? What do you do when your rug scrubber won't suck the water back out of the carpet that it just put down? My blog is all about the things we use to keep our homes clean. You will learn what to do when they won't work and how to make them work to the best of their abilities.

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