Felt is an excellent material that is soft to the touch. It is made of different fibers such as wool and other animal furs. Still, some types of felt incorporate synthetic fibers such as rayon and petroleum-based acrylic, which are pressed, condensed, and matted together to create felt fabric. Felt possesses extraordinary qualities. It absorbs sound, holds water without the fabric feeling wet, and is flame-retardant.
There are several uses for this fabric, such as hats, clothing, arts and crafts, and even tent coverings, but slippers made from felt are slowly gaining popularity. However, felt is not easy to clean since it can be sensitive to temperature and certain cleaning solvents. In addition, cleaning it can be pretty tedious since throwing it in the washing machine might cause the fabric to shrink, especially if it is made from wool. Here are some tips on how to wash felt slippers without ruining or shrinking the fabric.
Cleaning Methods for Felt Slippers
1. Handwashing is still the best option for cleaning felt slippers. You can simply use a damp cloth and dab it gently on the surface of the slippers. Warm water is best since its temperature is just right and would not cause the fabric to shrink. Remember that you must not submerge the slippers in water since it will take longer to dry.
If you are cleaning wet surface dirt, allow it to dry thoroughly before attempting to clean. Rubbing the dirt while it is wet will cause it to burrow further into the fabric, making it harder to clean. If you force it, you might ruin the fabric permanently.
2. If the dirt on your felt slippers will not cause a stain, here are a few items you can use to get rid of the dirt. Remember that you have to let it dry first before attempting to use any of these items.
– Soft bristle brush – Gently rub over the dried dirt, and wipe the excess particles with your hand.
Baby wipes are wet enough to clean surface dirt without damaging the felt fabric and will clean most stains if done correctly. Do not wipe hard if you do not want to damage the fabric.
– Masking tape – If you do not have a lint roller and you simply want to remove lint and hair sticking to your felt slippers, place a small piece of masking tape on the surface of the slippers and simply pull away. Brush off the remaining dirt with your hands.
– Vacuum cleaner – A small vacuum cleaner meant for sofa corners and keyboards can suck up all the dirt and dust from the fabric without damaging it.
– Lint roller – Gently rub over the dirt with the lint roller and make sure not to push down too hard, which might cause dirt particles to settle deep into the fabric of your felt slippers, making it harder to remove.
3. If there are stubborn stains on your felt slippers, spot cleaning is your best option. Dab a bit of gentle liquid soap on the fabric, but make sure not to rub too hard. Use a damp cloth to dab on the stain until it disappears. If the stain is still there even after several dabbing repetitions, dilute white vinegar and use it to remove the stain. Do not use concentrated vinegar since it might ruin the color of the fabric. Once the stain is removed, dab at the area with a wet towel to soak up the remaining vinegar and soap. Next, use a dry towel to remove the excess water and let it air-dry in a place that is not directly lit with sunlight.
4. If you absolutely need to use a washing machine to clean your felt slippers, here are a few things to remember so that the slippers do not get ruined.
- Use warm water.
- Use the gentlest cycle setting possible.
- Do not use bleach or harsh soaps.
- Do not use the dryer.
Using the washing machine to wash your felt slippers might cause the fabric to tear apart or shrink, ruining them permanently. However, if your appliance has a wool setting, washing your felt slippers in them is fine, as long as you do not do too long a cycle. As soon as they are done from the cycle, wear your wet slippers so that they mold to the shape of your feet before drying. This method helps retain its size even after drying.
Things to Remember On How To Wash Felt Slippers
- If the fabric starts to fray, trim them off with fine scissors. Taking away the excess material will also prevent it from pulling the parts still embedded firmly onto the slippers.
- Do not use a steel brush to clean the surface of your felt slippers. Steel will pull the fabric apart, causing permanent damage.
- Do not use bleach or other similarly strong cleaning solutions. Not only will they damage the color of your felt slippers, but they will also ruin the fabric.
- If possible, place your felt slippers inside a laundry bag before putting them inside the washing machine. This helps retain the shape of your felt slippers since they won’t stretch out too much.
- Never use water that is too hot or too cold. Hot water will shrink the fabric, and cold water will stretch it out.
Since felt slippers are not exactly easy to clean, it is best to watch tutorials on how to do so. Researching which cleaning solutions are best for the fabric is also recommended since you would not want to accidentally use soap that will harm the fabric. As long as the dirt on your slippers will not cause a stain, refrain from subjecting them to too much rubbing. Avoid pulling the fibers apart since there is no solution to torn felt.
With these in mind, you will be able to take care of your felt slippers and wear them for a long time.