Care for Bedspreads & Comforters

Bedding supplies typically last a long time. Comforters and bedspreads usually last five and six years on average.

A bedspread is an outer covering for a bed that goes over the sheets and blankets. It is usually a decorative component of the bed set. A comforter is a quilted bed cover.

The cover consists of an outer face fabric, a center batting (usually a fiber mat or down), and a backing fabric. These three layers are held together with a stitched pattern or simulated stitching. The comforter may be used for decorative purposes, like a bedspread, or in place of a blanket.

Unlike clothing care labels, which provide instructions for how to properly care for the garments, the Federal Trade Commission’s Care Label Rule does not require permanent labels on home furnishings fabrics. Most bedspreads and comforters are sold with care instructions on a hang tag, a temporary label or on the packaging.

Possible Problems
While bedspreads and comforters are often long-term purchases, they can be subject to many problems in use and care. Possible problems include:

  • Stains: Stains can easily occur from spillage or contact with various substances in use. Once they have contacted the fabric, they may be difficult to remove. Factors affecting removal include the nature of the staining material and the age of the stain. The multiple thickness of bedspreads and comforters may also make removal difficult.
  • Color loss: Cleaning may cause color loss, a print to be diminished in color or a print to lose its original brightness. All coordinating pieces should be drycleaned or laundered at the same time and with the same process to prevent color variances within the set.
  • Shrinkage: Shrinkage of two to three percent or more can easily occur if the fabric is not completely preshrunk. This may cause the bedspread to not fit properly or appear much too small.
  • Improper construction: If comforters are not quilted with closed channels or pockets the filling material can shift in cleaning and use. Proper construction helps prevent shifting, fabric tears, and uneven appearance.
  • Stitching under stress: Stitches could break during cleaning if quilting lines are more than eight to 10 inches apart.

They may also break if the stitching thread was damaged in use or if the stitches are not secured properly at the end of the quilting line.

Preserving Your Household Textiles
While cleaners are clothing care experts, they also know a thing or two about household textiles, which, in addition to bedspreads and comforters, include draperies and curtains, blankets, upholstery, slipcovers, decorative pillows, rugs, and heirloom textiles.

To protect and prolong the beauty of your household textiles remember these basic tips:

  1. Protect all furnishings from sunlight, fumes, and pets.
  2. Damage, like tears, should be repaired immediately.
  3. Vacuum and/or brush to remove dust regularly.
  4. Follow the manufacturer’s cleaning recommendations.
  5. Don’t allow items to become extremely soiled.
  6. Have stains removed immediately.

Don’t store household textiles that are not clean and stain free.

Robinson Cleaners is a family owned and managed business and operate two state-of-the-art cleaning facility and have been in business over 40 years in the Greater Cincinnati area. Unlike most cleaners, all garments are cleaned on premises and we stand behind every garment we clean. Robinson Cleaners is a proud member of the Dry Cleaning and Laundry Institute.

Top 8 Best Care Tips to Make Your Garments Last

1. Bring a garment in for professional cleaning as soon as possible after staining occurs. Stains and soil left too long can be impossible to remove and will shorten the life of your garment.

2. Discuss any stains with your cleaner. Be especially sure to point out light-colored or invisible spills, such as those from soft drinks, fruit juices or white wine.

3. Allow perfumes, lotions, deodorants, antiperspirants, and other toiletries to dry before you get dressed since these products can contain ingredients that affect some dyes.

4. Protect your garments from excessive perspiration, especially silks, because it can cause many dyes to discolor.

5. Have matching pieces cleaned together, including bedspreads and drapes, so that any color loss will be uniform and pieces will still match.

6. Protect your garments from prolonged exposure to direct sunlight or strong artificial light. Keep in mind that even indoor lighting can affect some dyes.

7. Don’t press stained or soiled clothes. The heat may set some stains.

8. Fabricare article

Common Sense Rules for Summertime Storage

Now that winter is over, it’s time to store away all those winter clothes until next season. Follow these simple rules to keep your winter fashions looking good season after season.

  • Wash and dryclean everything before storage. Some stains that are now invisible may darken with age. Dirt and food are also invitations to insects.
  • Make all necessary repairs—sew sagging hemlines, replace missing buttons, and fix split seams— before cleaning and storing for the season.
  • Store all items in a cool, well-ventilated area. Hot attics, damp basements, and garages are to be avoided.
  • Store away from natural and artificial light. A cool, dark closet is a good location for storage. Store woolens in cedar chests or other airtight containers. Second choices for storage are cloth or canvas bags and cardboard boxes. If you store your garments in a closet, drape a cloth sheet over your clothes to protect them from dust and light. Do not store leathers, furs, and woolens in plastic. Plastic encourages moisture, which can create mildew.
  • Pack airtight containers (other than cedar chests) with mothballs suspended above or separate from the clothes—never place mothballs directly on the clothes. Cedar blocks or chips also discourage moths.
  • To decrease wrinkles in sweaters, fold them and wrap in white tissue paper before storing. If you hang your sweaters, fold over the cross bar to avoid shoulder stretches. Down, like all winter clothing, should be cleaned (either washed or drycleaned according to the care label) before storage. Down should be stored loosely to allow for air circulation.
  • Furs should be stored on a well padded hanger in a cool, dark place, ideally with a professional fur storage company or a drycleaner with fur storage capacity.
  • If you do not have proper storage space, ask us about box storage. You can get your clothes cleaned and properly stored all at the same time.

Robinson Cleaners is a family owned and managed business and operate two state-of-the-art cleaning facility and have been in business over 40 years in the Greater Cincinnati area. Unlike most cleaners, all garments are cleaned on premises and we stand behind every garment we clean. Robinson Cleaners is a proud member of the Dry Cleaning and Laundry Institute.

Poison Ivy Q&A

Poison Ivy Q&A

Q: My daughter had poison ivy last week and I am worried that the clothes she wore will cause her to relapse. Is there anything I can do to be sure she won’t get it again from her clothes?

A: Both drycleaning and laundering are acceptable cleaning methods for removing poison ivy from clothing. Laundering is preferred because of the multiple flushes used in this process. Also, it is best to wear gloves and wash the contaminated clothing separately. Casual contact with your daughter’s clothing should be okay, but be sure to wash any areas that contact the clothing with soap and water. This precaution will usually prevent a rash from appearing.
Garments must contain sap from the plant to transmit these chemical contaminants, and not all people are sensitive to them. Remember to wash them separately so the poison won’t be able to spread to other garments.

Robinson Cleaners is a family owned and managed business and operate two state-of-the-art cleaning facility and have been in business over 40 years in the Greater Cincinnati area. Unlike most cleaners, all garments are cleaned on premises and we stand behind every garment we clean. Robinson Cleaners is a proud member of the Dry Cleaning and Laundry Institute.

Is Club Soda Really a Miracle Stain Remover? 

Does club soda really work on spills? Everyone “knows” club soda is the ultimate remedy for instant stain removal, but is it really all it’s cracked up to be? Our 107-year-old professional trade association, the Drycleaning & Laundry Institute (DLI), recently completed an in-depth study of the merits of club soda versus plain old water in stain removal, and as members, we’re pleased to share their findings. The short answer is “yes” club soda can be a big help in the short term, but “no” it is not the end-all, be-all stain removal miracle it is made out to be.

When applied immediately to 10 commonplace food stains DLI tested, both club soda and water removed anywhere from some to most of the stain. However, neither treatment will completely remove the stains and if left untreated the remaining stain residues can become permanent stains over time or when the garment is cleaned. On the 10 common spills that DLI’s stain removal experts used for the test, they found that after blotting a spill with either club soda or water some or most visible traces of the substance were removed; however, an analysis under ultraviolet light showed that at least a portion of nearly every stain remained after club soda or water was used.

Therefore, although it is best to try and rinse out the stain with water immediately after contact with the clothing, it is then also advisable to take the garment to a professional cleaner who can completely remove the last traces. Point out to the cleaner the area of the stain, the type of staining substance, and what attempts you made to reduce the initial spillage. If this is not done as soon as possible, the invisible remaining residue can oxidize over time and leave a permanent discoloration later, which in many cases on some fabrics cannot be removed.

For Best Results, Act Fast
When it comes time to remove the stain, the chances are greatly increased if club soda (or water) is used to rinse the stain before it dries. After it dries the degree of effectiveness drops considerably. In a coffee stain, for example, there may be sugar residue present that you may not be able to see, but it can caramelize during the drying or pressing processes, leaving a yellowish stain. A stain removal expert can remove this residue if he or she knows the stain was there in the first place. It is always recommended that customers mention any spills or attempts to remove stains at the counter. This way we will be better prepared to restore your garment to a like-new appearance.

There are also some stains that club soda actually makes worse. Ballpoint ink is almost always made up of water and solvent components. If water or club soda is used to remove this kind of stain, it could set the stain permanently into the fabric. So, with ballpoint stains, it is best to leave them to the professional stain removers.

Club soda or water will hold the stain off until you can get the garment to a cleaner: we can usually remove the stains completely if you bring it in without delay.

Robinson Cleaners is a family owned and managed business and operate two state-of-the-art cleaning facility and have been in business over 40 years in the Greater Cincinnati area. Unlike most cleaners, all garments are cleaned on premises and we stand behind every garment we clean. Robinson Cleaners is a proud member of the Dry Cleaning and Laundry Institute.

Dealing With Bed Bugs

Most householders have never seen a bed bug. Until recently, they were also a rarity among pest control professionals. However, bed bugs have made a comeback.

They are increasingly encountered in homes, apartments, hotels, health care facilities, dormitories, schools, shelters, movie theaters, furniture rental outlets, office buildings and modes of transport.

Drycleaning & Laundry Institute has provided the following information.

Bed bugs are small wingless insect that can feed on sleeping humans. Adults are small (about 1/5 inch), oval, and rusty red. Nymphs, or immature bed bugs are smaller and lighter colored.

Bed bugs feed only on blood and must have one blood meal prior to molting to the next larger state. Adults can feed every few days but can survive many months without food. Bed bug feeding is painless. Victims usually remain asleep. Areas around bites may redden, swell, and itch.

These nocturnal insects hide along seams of mattresses, in box springs, or in cracks and crevices near sleeping areas. How does a bed bug infestation start? People can carry bed bugs on luggage, clothes, bedding, furniture, or other objects. Hotels, furnished apartments, dormitories and homeless shelters are most at risk. Second-hand mattresses and furniture can be a source. Furniture and other home area infestations. Eliminating an infestation requires removing or treating all infested materials and monitoring to be sure bed bugs are gone.

Heat and cold can kill bed bugs. If the outside temperature is below 25 Degrees F, place mattresses and furniture outside for several hours to kill bed bugs. Fragile or delicate items can be placed in a freezer. Toys, backpacks, or other small items can be placed in a dryer at a temperature setting of 120-125 Degrees F for 25-30 minutes and a 5 minute cool down. You may wish to consider hiring an experienced pest control professional.

Remove or treat all infested materials as soon as you detect bed bugs. Wash all bedding and clothing in hot water – 120-125 Degrees F – and dry in a hot dryer.

Vacuum along mattress seams, baseboards and other areas and place vacuum bag in a tightly sealed plastic bag for disposal.

If bringing items to a professional cleaner, secure all items in a plastic bags

Robinson Cleaners is a family owned and managed business and operate two state-of-the-art cleaning facility and have been in business over 40 years in the Greater Cincinnati area. Unlike most cleaners, all garments are cleaned on premises and we stand behind every garment we clean. Robinson Cleaners is a proud member of the Dry Cleaning and Laundry Institute.

Cleaning and Storing Garments to Prevent Insect Damage

Mysteriously appearing holes may be the result of insect damage. Often the holes may not be readily apparent until after cleaning. Garments that have been stored for a long time are particularly prone to insect damage. Moth damage is commonly seen on wool fabrics, but beetles, silverfish, roaches, and other insects feed on stains and sizings on fabrics made of other fibers. The type of fabric or food substance insects are attracted to determines whether the damage they cause is direct or indirect.

Direct damage occurs when insects such as webbing cloth moths, casemaking cloth moths, and sometimes termites, feed directly on the fabric. This group of insects attacks wool, mohair, natural bristles, fur, feathers, and down. They also damage blended fibers such as wool/polyester – dispelling the notion that the use of synthetic fibers immunizes the fabrics against insect damage.

Indirect damage occurs when insects such as silverfish, beetles, and roaches feed on leftover food, perspiration, beverage spills, and starch on the fabric. For this reason, any stains, especially food and beverage residue, should be removed from a garment before it is stored. Prevention of insect damage includes cleaning garments and using mothballs or cedar chests. Cleaning discourages insects from making their home in your garments. Although most forms of moth life are destroyed by drycleaning solvents during cleaning, moth larvae can attack fabrics once the solvent evaporates.

Using moth balls or cedar chests or chips can help prevent insect damage. The odor of mothballs may repel larvae and insects if the area of use is enclosed, thus ensuring a high concentration of odor. Suspend the mothballs above the garments; do not place them directly on the garments. The scent of cedar chests or chips repels insects, but it is the air tightness of the chest that protects the garments from insect damage.

One problem with using mothballs is the lingering odor after the garments are removed from storage. Try hanging the garments outside for several days after removal from storage. If hanging outside won’t remove the mothball odor, ask us to remove the odors. In some cases we may need to use an ozone generator. Ozone generators work by passing dry air through a high frequency electrical field. The resulting electrical discharge splits an oxygen molecule into two free atoms, allowing them to combine with an oxygen molecule that has not been split to form ozone. The contact between ozone and the odors embedded in the textiles causes oxidation to recur, eliminating the odors and releasing oxygen.

Your garments will love you for not leaving them to the moths.

Robinson Cleaners is a family owned and managed business and operate two state-of-the-art cleaning facility and have been in business over 40 years in the Greater Cincinnati area. Unlike most cleaners, all garments are cleaned on premises and we stand behind every garment we clean. Robinson Cleaners is a proud member of the Dry Cleaning and Laundry Institute.