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    Stain Removal

    Hello Ladies:
    I have a question for all of you. I have a very old quilt top made by my great-grandmother. It must be 75-80 years old and is pretty fragile. (She made it after having had a stroke. The whole thing was hand pieced and her stitches are pretty large in places.) I'd like to finish it up someday, but there are some pretty large stains on it that I'd dearly love to remove. Does anyone have a safe, guaranteed method for removing stains and/or cleaning really old quilts? I'd love some input. Thanks!
    When life throws you scraps, make a quilt! :icon_bigsmile:

    #2
    Re: Stain Removal

    The type of stain would determine how to remove them. Do you know what the stains are from?
    Nancy Wilkins
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      #3
      Re: Stain Removal

      I think they are just age spots. Is there such a thing?
      When life throws you scraps, make a quilt! :icon_bigsmile:

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        #4
        Re: Stain Removal

        I have age spots all over . . . and yes, there is such a thing. I would try one or two things on a small inconspicuous spot - one would be lemon juice and see if that will take the stain out. The other would be hydrogen peroxide - nothing stronger than what you can get off the shelf at the drug store.

        A gentle soak in a stain remover solution probably would also work and then a gentle squeeze and drying in the sun.
        Sometimes, when there's a raging fire,
        it's best not to try to put it out with gasoline.

        "...pal carajo con la negatividad..."

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          #5
          Re: Stain Removal

          Originally posted by Sandy Navas View Post
          I have age spots all over . . . and yes, there is such a thing.
          Sandy, you make me laugh. Thanks for the advice!
          When life throws you scraps, make a quilt! :icon_bigsmile:

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            #6
            Re: Stain Removal

            Martha, I did a search and came up with these instructions:

            Instructions
            Things You'll Need

            * 2 white towels
            * Color-safe bleach or oxygen bleach containing sodium perborate
            * 2 white cloths

            1. Place the quilt on a level surface with the brown stains facing upward. Lay a white towel folded in half directly under the stains. Dampen the brown spots with cool water.

            * 2. Dampen a clean white cloth with a bleach containing sodium perborate. You can commonly find sodium perborate in color-safe bleaches--such as Clorox 2--or in oxygen bleach. Oxygen bleach comes in a powdered form; mix it at a ratio of 1 cup of oxygen bleach for each gallon of water before submerging the cloth in it.

            * 3 Blot the brown stains--do not rub--with the dampened cloth. Start at the outer edge of the stain and blot while moving inward toward the center. Continue blotting until no more liquid can be absorbed.

            * 4 Dampen a clean cloth with cool water. Blot the area to remove the bleach from the quilt. Pat the quilt dry with a towel.
            Sometimes, when there's a raging fire,
            it's best not to try to put it out with gasoline.

            "...pal carajo con la negatividad..."

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              #7
              Re: Stain Removal

              Since your quilt top is so fragile and not quilted yet, I would secure the gaps caused by large stitches and quilt the top by hand or have it quilted by hand. It doesn't sound like the top could survive the rigors of machine quilting. Once the quilt is quilted and bound, then I would address the stains. I would discourage you from using anything stronger than a little lemon juice and some gentle soap intended for quilts. I would soak the quilt and gently launder it by hand. Remember to rinse again and again. I would use a color catcher sheet in the wash water and rinse water. Do not wring or twist the quilt; rather, gently roll it in towels and spread it out flat to dry indoors. The wind could damage the raw edges of your top if put outdoors to dry. If the stains come out, wonderful; if not, you would still have your great-grandmother's quilt. I have had a good deal of luck washing quilts with Orvus, a low-sudsing, gentle soap that's often for sale in quilt shops. Orvus is also used for washing race and show horses, so I buy mine at my local MFA feed store. It's much less expensive this way and it's the very same product. best wishes....Barb
              sigpicwww.whisperofrose.blogspot.com


              Scottie Mom Barb

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                #8
                Re: Stain Removal

                Hi, I have been using a product for many years on all of my vintage 60 year plus linens. It is a spot cleaner called FOLEX. I call it my miracle spray.It will take out all kinds of stains. Find it where the rug cleaners are. I have removed old blood and grease stains. Try it you will use it on everything.Donnah818
                :icon_wave: Those who sleep under a quilt are wrapped in love

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                  #9
                  Re: Stain Removal

                  OH this is good to know because I have a lot of quilts from my G-grandma's and Grandma's. Thank you
                  Jan G :icon_wave:


                  THE HURRIER I GO,
                  THE BEHINDER I GET!!!!
                  :lol:

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                    #10
                    Re: Stain Removal

                    What about rust stains? Any ideas? I have some Whink that takes out new rust stains, but will it be safe on an antique quilt?

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                      #11
                      Re: Stain Removal

                      Again a tip from my granny (she is going to get famous at this rate) bicarbonate soda works on most stains and is gentle on delicate fabrics. she used it repeatedly on the family christening gown which every wearer apparently threw up on as if it was a matter of duty! Since taking over as custondian of the christening gown..... the gown is 18th centurary silk and the underskirt is cotton of a simular vintage..... i have also had to clean it up. Following granny's instructions i disolved a table spoon of bicarb in just enough cold water to cover the gown and soaked it for an hour or so then gently agitated it in the water. All the ick came out a treat. For a quilt top you would need a lot more water and therefor a lot more bicarbonate soda.....so maybe a tablesoon for every couple of pints of water? Good luck with it all. Oh! PS the gown has no age spots on it which is fairly amazing given its age.. maybe the bicarb helps with that too?
                      Blog
                      http://divinedaisydesigns.blogspot.co.uk/

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                        #12
                        Re: Stain Removal

                        This is really good info. I am writing down some of these. You ladies are a wealth of information. Thanks so much.
                        Alana
                        To live a creative life we must lose our fear of being wrong.
                        alanashideaway.blogspot.com
                        https://www.facebook.com/quiltsbyAlana

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                          #13
                          Re: Stain Removal

                          Here is a good link for removing stains from vintage tablecloths, might be useful.

                          http://www.vintagetableclothsclub.com/stains.htm

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                            #14
                            Re: Stain Removal

                            Thanks for the tip Donna. I've used lemon juice in the past with some luck but still didn't get a few stains out.
                            Susan

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                              #15
                              Re: Stain Removal

                              Thank you for all this info! Good luck, Martha! It is nice you are trying to restore it.

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