Silk is a luxurious natural fiber that makes beautiful upholstery. Silk furniture is an investment that must be actively maintained! It is important to clean silk furniture with great care and attention to detail.
Cleaning Silk Upholstery
You Will Need:
- A vacuum
- Cold water
- Mild laundry detergent
- A hair dryer
Steps to Clean Silk Upholstery:
- Begin by vacuuming the entire piece of furniture well to remove all loose dirt. Be certain the upholstery attachment for the vacuum is clean before you begin.
- Generally, silk upholstery can be cleaned with a soft cloth dipped in a solution of cold water and mild laundry detergent such as Woolite. However, exercise extreme caution and be sure to test a small, inconspicuous area first as many types of dyed silk will discolor easily. Skim the suds off the top of the water onto the cloth, then wring the cloth out well so it’s only damp, not dripping.
- To prevent water stains, dry the silk with a hair dryer on cool air.
- When in doubt, have your silk upholstery cleaned professionally.
Additional Tips and Advice
- Be cautious not to overwet the fabric.
- Do not place your silk upholstery in direct sunlight, or in close vicinity to a heating/air conditioning sources.
- Clean spills promptly, blotting at them with a firm, lifting motion; never rub the stain as this will force it deeper into the fabric.
- Never use a hair dryer on hot air to dry a wet spot or spill on silk upholstery as the heat may cause shrinkage of the fabric.
- Sometimes when cleaning silk upholstery water marks will remain that are nearly impossible to remove. If this occurs, you may want to consider using a dry-cleaning method.
- One site user wrote in (Thanks!) to say that for white silk with water stains, blotting with a mix of witch hazel and peroxide can work to remove them, though it may take a while to work. Do not use the method on colored silk though as it may lighten or remove the dye.
I have an old wooden Japanese jewelry box that I “insanely” purchased. There are some stains of unknown origin on it. The silk brocade is set into the top of the box. I can’t vacuum it or it could come loose. I can spot test the rubbing alcohol on a cotton swab OR the white vinegar. (Unfortunately, I will also have some embroidery repairs with thread that I can do also. I do sewing crafts so I am not intimidated by the task.)
I would like to send an email for your opinion.
Thank you. Debra
The post How to Clean Stains from Brocade Upholstery might help. To vacuum a delicate piece, you can use the hose and wrap a breathable fabric over the mouth, such as cheesecloth or a sock, to cut down on the suction. If you have a more specific question, it (and pictures) can be submitted via the Ask A Question form. Good luck!
I have a white silk chair with a dirt stain on the seat…Best thing to clean it without leaving ring…alcohol or dry cleaning solvent or baking soda??????
The order of those items for which is least likely to leave a ring is:
1) baking soda (since there is no liquid at all)
2) alcohol (since it dries very quickly)
3) dry cleaning solvent
However, you should always test a cleaning solution in a small hidden area first. If the alcohol or dry cleaner damages the area in any way (removing the dye, etc.), then it would leave a different kind of ring.
I have a silk antique chair with beautiful light blue silk upholstery. It has what looks like water stains on it. Is there a way of removing that instead of reupholstering? Thank you.
Here is a trick for removing water stains. Wet a cloth with distilled water, then wring the cloth out so it’s only damp, not dripping. Pat the stain lightly to wet it, then immediately use a hair dryer on cool air to dry the area.
If that doesn’t work, try cleaning the stain with dry cleaning solvent. Good luck!
I have a living room set of yellow, peach & gold silk.I don’t know how to clean it. What do I use?
The steps above should work, but be sure to test on a small hidden area first to look for any adverse reaction. Do a complete test (start through drying) to get the most information you can about how your material may react. Good luck!