I asked Mary from Victora BC, a question about cleaning our rug hooking projects and as she is heavily involved in the "business", she posted these tips which I would like to highlight in today's post.
The cleaning concerns about hand hooked area rugs are as follows:
-the colours could bleed
-the backing could shrink, making the rug bumpy and mis-shapened
-stitches could unhook
-the stitches could shrink, causing the design to look funny
These are possible things that can go wrong if hand hooked rugs are improperly cleaned.
Since hand hooked rugs are mostly used as wall hangings they don't need to be cleaned very often, about once a year or so. Vacuuming them about once a month with the little brush attachment on your vacuum will remove the dust that the rug collects on a daily basis.
Ask your local rug cleaner if they clean hand hooked rugs and how they clean them. It may be best to use a rug that you don't like or make a sample rug with lots of bright colours and get them to clean it.
A reminder if you don't feel comfortable with the way the cleaner is answering your questions, then follow your gut. You put a lot of effort into making your works of art don't leave it to chance that it will be cleaned properly.
When we get in a hand hooked rug for cleaning I explain the following:
We test the colours to make sure they won't run
We do try to do a wet clean, but most of the time hand hooked may get dry cleaned depending on the types of fibers used and the delicacy of the rug
If our cleaning guy has an hesitation about the cleaning results of a rug he simply will not chance it.When it comes to your hand hooked rugs find a cleaner you feel comfortable with.
Again let them clean a sample rug and see if you are happy with the results. Not cleaning hand hooks rugs can make a rug look dull and make you fall out of love with it. That is not good.
I also learned from Mary's blog which is listed here in hOOkwOrM, is that vaccuming the underside or backing of carpets and mats is almost as important as vaccuming the topside.