We provide extraordinary care for fine
garments & household textiles
I'm frequently asked to spot clean a garment. A
client will tell me that they only wore the garment for a
short time and got a little food spot or some makeup on it.
My typical reaction is that, yes, it's possible to spot clean a
garment. But, in most cases, I'd prefer to clean the garment
And here's why.
Spot cleaning is essentially an attempt to remove a visible
stain without subjecting the garment to any dry cleaning, wet
cleaning, handwashing and/or restoration process.
Spot cleaning is accomplished by a stain removal technician on a
spotting board (a piece of equipment shaped like a home ironing
board), using a combination of steam, specialty cleaning agents,
vacuum and/or air drying.
The problem with spot cleaning, and the reason I generally
prefer to clean the garment completely, is that it's almost
impossible to completely remove (or "flush out") the residue of any
chemical agent that might have been used in spot cleaning --
residue that would normally be flushed out of the textile by the
dry cleaning solvent or fluid.
This means that the chemical residue remains in the
fabric with unpredictable long-term results.
What's more, many of these spots are oil-based stains, and
oil-based stains cannot always be flushed out completely. So when
that garment is pressed, the heat from the iron could oxidize the
stain and yellow the fabric.
Of course, there may be unique situations where a garment either
cannot or should not be completely cleaned due to its fragility,
finish, embellishment or trim. But, typically, these situations are
few and far between -- even if the garment is labeled "Do not
dryclean. Do not wetclean. Spot clean only."
Looking for an opinion? Discuss the garment with a true quality
cleaner. They'd welcome the opportunity to discuss your options,
advise you as to any risks associated with each option, and
identify the results you can or cannot expect from each.
How can I help you?
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