Fringed trim adds a touch of whimsy and texture to curtains, rugs, skirts, scarves, and all kinds of home furnishings and apparel. After months or years of use, however, the ends of the fringed trim can start to fray, making your item look aged. Even if your item is older, you can clean up the fringe and prevent it from fraying again. This technique is best used when your fringe is new, but it works well with older fringe as well.
Lay your fringed item on a flat surface and comb the fringe with a wide-tooth comb so it is straight. Start at the knotted end of the fringe and carefully comb down to the ends of the fringe, a section of fringe at a time, until all of the fringe lies flat.
Trim the ends of the fringe so that all the pieces are the same length. If the ends are already frayed, trim the frayed sections off. Comb and trim the fringe a section at a time.
Test a small section of fringe to see if it can be heat-sealed. Heat-sealing fringe is a quick and permanent way to finish the edges to prevent fraying. Heat your iron to the cotton setting and hold it upside down so the iron plate faces the ceiling. Hold a small section of the fringe over the iron and gently lower it until it touches the plate for one second.
Let the fringed edges cool. If they are slightly melted, you can heat seal the rest of your fringe. Lower small sections at a time over the iron to heat seal the remainder of your fringe. If the edges look burnt instead of melted, cut of the burnt edges and don't heat seal the remainder of the fringe.
Apply fray-preventing gel to the ends of your non heat-sealed fringe. Put a small drop of the gel on a cotton swab and run the swab over the edges in small sections, completely coating the raw edges of the fringe in the gel. Let the fringe dry for an hour. Re-comb the fringe to separate any strands that get stuck together with the gel.