How to clean a velvet dress

Written by mimi abney
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How to clean a velvet dress
Use mild detergent and a brush to clean a velvet dress. (Getty Creative)

Velvet is a sumptuous fabric used by designers to create elegant dresses and gowns. If your velvet dress needs a thorough cleaning, dry cleaning is the best method to preserve this delicate fabric. For simple stain removal, however, you can use mild detergent and a velvet brush to clean your velvet dress at home.

Things you need

  • Vacuum cleaner wand attachment
  • Soft-bristled toothbrush
  • Mild liquid detergent
  • Clean white cloth or towel
  • Iron
  • Clothes steamer (optional)
  • Velvet brush
  • Dry cleaning solvent (optional)
  • Cloth nappy (optional)

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  1. 1

    Remove surface dirt. Attach a small wand to your vacuum cleaner. Using the lightest vacuum setting, remove any dirt and dust from the velvet dress. If you do not have a vacuum cleaner, use a hair brush with soft bristles to loosen the dirt.

  2. 2

    Clean stains using a soft-bristled toothbrush. Mix 6 ml (1 tsp) of mild liquid detergent and 240 ml (1 cup) of cold water in a basin. Dip the end of the toothbrush in the soapy mixture. Gather suds on the end of the brush. Scrub the stain using the bubbles. Do not saturate the stain with water.

  3. 3

    Blot the stain with a clean white cloth. To prevent the stain from setting in the fabric, apply minimal pressure when blotting the velvet dress. Let the area dry for 30 minutes away from heat.

  4. 4

    Steam the fabric. Turn the velvet dress inside out. To remove any creases, place a steamer or steam iron a minimum of 5 cm (2 inches) away from the material. If using a steam iron, place it on a low-heat setting. Move the iron back and forth across the velvet dress to remove wrinkles.

  5. 5

    Smooth the fabric using a velvet brush. Velvet is a soft pile fabric constructed of silk, rayon or cotton fibres. Similar to suede, velvet has a small nap texture that requires it to be cleaned only by brushing. Brushing the material raises the nap and restores the plush texture of the fabric. Gently brush the velvet to prevent tearing the garment.

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