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3. Can you tell me what is best way to clean finished product? Is it dry clean or hand wash? Or not clean at all?
You should always wash your finished piece because even if it doesnít look dirty, it will have some dirt on it and oils left by your hands will attract more. You should also never iron your needlework before itís been cleans since, like a dryer, it will make dirt and oils permanent.
I suggest washing with a gentle soap like ivory or baby shampoo, though I feel best choice is Orvus quilt soap. Itís non-abrasive and free of harsh chemicals, which makes it perfect for needlework. I donít suggest Woolite since it contains bleach. Use cool water and let your piece soak for 5-10 minutes, and then gently suds piece. Rinse it by dipping it in cool clean water. If any of colors begin to bleed, continue rinsing until water remains clear. When itís completely rinsed lay piece flat on a towel and gently roll it up. This will blot up extra moisture. NEVER wring or twist your needlework!!
The next step is ironing. First, place your needlework face down on a dry towel and place another thinner towel or press fabric on other side. Putting a towel underneath helps keep stitches from getting flattened. Be sure to use a dry iron thatís set on appropriate fabric setting. Let piece fully cool before moving.
After this first washing, floss and fabric should be color fast and you shouldnít have any other problems washing it.
I hope these hits help make your needlework projects even better!
Katrina Renouf is the founder and owner of the cross stitch website www.matkailuxstitch.com.