How to Clean Taffeta Drapery

What You'll Need
Small vacuum or vacuum attachment
Clean cloths
Cloth iron with steam setting
Gentle detergent or stain remover
Spray freshener

When you spend the money on something fancy like taffeta drapery, you’ll want to do whatever you can to make sure it lasts for years to come. Regular care and maintenance must be taken to make sure it stays in prime condition. Below are some basic cleaning instructions to make sure that your taffeta drapery always looks as good as new.

Step 1 – What NOT To Do

Never use water, and especially do not use detergent of any kind, on your taffeta drapery. With taffeta, there is always the risk of leaving water spots. They should never be ironed with water or steam to remove wrinkles. Most wrinkles will disappear on their own if left hung up for a few days, and the rest can be pressed out with an iron over a soft-topped ironing board with the heat set low.

Step 2 – Weekly Maintenance

You shouldn’t wait until your taffeta drapery begins to look old or dirty before actually doing something about it. Half of proper care for linens means taking regular preventative measures.

Vacuum clean it regularly. Do not use your upright vacuum, unless you have a small vacuum arm attachment that will be easy on the drapes. If you don’t have an attachment like this, you can buy a small vacuum like a dust buster to take care of the job.

Step 3 – Stain Removal

Stains can be difficult to remove from taffeta, especially if it's real taffeta and not synthetic. There are a number of methods, but you must be careful, as you could risk damaging the taffeta more.

You can use an iron with a steamer, and wave it in wide arcs about 5 or 6 inches away from the fabric. Don't get too close or you may leave water spots or even burn the fabric. After steaming, gently wipe in small, circular patters with a clean, dry cloth.

Despite what was mentioned earlier, for synthetic taffeta you may be able to work the stain out using a gentle detergent or other stain remover, again rubbing in a light, circular pattern. Try using the stain remover on a small, low corner out of direct eyesight to be sure it won’t leave its own stain.

Step 4 – Removing Bad Smells

This is more a problem with taffeta garments, but your taffeta drapes may need freshening up if they have been stored for a while. Use a spray refresher such as Febreeze, but like the stain remover, test it in an inconspicuous spot first. If it looks fine after drying, you can spray lightly across the rest of the fabric.