Cleaning Velvet

I have some floor-length velvet curtains that got wet at the bottoms when the floor flooded. There is a line of dirt where the top of the water was located. I have been at a loss to know what to try. (Please note: I have avoided dry cleaning because it would be extremely difficult to detach the curtains) Is there anything I could try to clean the dirt line without removing the curtains? Thanks for help! Frank
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frank1492 wrote:

Do you know the fabric content.......nylon, silk, etc? What color? What size How is the curtain attached? Is there a cleaning tag?
If I was going to clean them in place, assuming they are washable, I'd rig a bucket or a pan (better - kitty litter box if deep enough) with cool water and a little Woolite. Take the entire width of curtain and let the bottom hang into the soapy solution a little deeper than the dirty line, soak for 30 min. You will need a plastic tarp and old towels to catch what drips off the curtain. Change the water and do the same to rinse with clear water x2. Do not wring or squeeze. You will be taking a chance with color change or the dirt wicking up further into the fabric, so don't wet too long........if you need to extract some water, place a terry towel behind and take a rolled towel and just brush down the flattened fabric with the rolled towel. Even that might flatten the pile a little, so consider the risk vs. dirty line remaining. Make sure you don't have any folds while doing it. I would be a little braver with darker fabric than with light. Do not use vinegar or ammonia, as they can be used to set dyes in silk and might make the problem worse.
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The curtains are a dark blue, home-made. I will try your suggestion. Thanks very much!
wrote:

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wrote:

I know its a hassle and there is cost, but your best bet is to take down and take them to a professional dry cleaners who specializes in drapery cleaning. They have all the equipment, will treat spots, pleat the drapes, and there will be much less chance of damage. If the drapes are over 10 years old, consider replacement.
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This is your best option. Although Norminn's technique could work, there are so many ways that it could turn into a disaster that your odds of success are rather poor. One thing stands out as a hazard, and that is the dirt line itself. Many kinds of crud will float on top of a water line, and since you have no clue what is there, it will be almost impossible to match the arsenal of tools, chemicals, knowledge, and techniques that professional cleaners have at their disposal. If you simply must leave the curtains in place, a disaster remediating company like ServPro should be consulted. Whatever, don't get in over your head, stay in the wading pool.
Joe
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