THE CARE GUIDE
As the owner of an exquisite Rug Artisan handmade rug, we recommend you to take good care of your custom rug. By taking some basic steps you can increase the life of your handmade rug considerably. Keeping this in mind we have compiled a short and informative rug care guide especially for you.
More Care, No Wear
Our handmade rugs should be brushed or vacuumed regularly to prevent the build-up of damaging dust and grit. Vacuuming also helps prevent the pile of the rug from flattening. Rugs should also be turned occasionally to even out any areas of wear that may be occurring.
When you first unroll your new Rug Artisan custom rug, you may notice that there are lines or creases running across the width of it. This is not a fault in the rug or any other glitch. These line marks are completely normal and are just pressure marks caused by the rug being rolled up whilst in transit. They are not permanent, and will only last until the rug takes to its new shape. After being rolled out, they will gradually fade with normal use and regular vacuuming.
This is similar to when you buy a new shirt or a pair of curtains which will be creased when you first take it out of the wrapping; the more you use and walk over the rug the quicker it will flatten out. This can take anything from a few days to a few weeks depending on the type of rug you have brought.
Wear and tear is also decided by the amount of traffic a rug faces. Large amount of footfall is damaging for a handmade rug and can make it fade unevenly. Areas which have high footfall should have durable rugs which are tough and can withstand plenty of traffic. To protect your delicate custom rugs, don’t place them in high-traffic areas such as kitchens or hallways. Place the rugs in low traffic areas such as a bedroom or guest room. It is a good idea to place artistic custom rugs on the walls as a wall rug.
Apart from that it is not ideal to walk on the rugs with your outdoor shoes or shoes with grips or heels. Footfall in bare feet or socks is generally easier on your custom rug than with shoes. Removing shoes not only protects the rug, it also prevents the rug from getting unnecessary outdoor dirt on it.
Placement of furniture is another important aspect. The position of your furniture will determine areas that are walked on more than others. To avoid continuous traffic on the same area, try changing your room settings every now and then. Rotating your custom rug occasionally is a good idea too.
Fluff and Stuff
It is completely normal for all wool rugs to shed some fibres, this is a natural characteristic of wool as a material. Pile shedding also called fluff is also normal in some man-made fibre rugs. Pile shedding is usually most rampant in the first few months of use and can lessen over time but will not stop completely. It does not however affect the life of a rug. Regular vacuuming is a good way to remove any excess fluff or fibres.
Some rugs are prone to sprouting. This is where some threads of the pile will appear that are longer than the rest of the pile. In this case all you need to do is trim any longer strands with a pair of sharp scissors. It is important that you do not try to pull these long threads out as this can damage your custom rug.
Rugs with shiny or silky piles are susceptible to shading. Shading occurs when certain areas of the pile run in a different direction and thus reflect light differently. This makes the rug appear lighter in some places and darker in others. If you brush your hand over the pile of some rugs you may see the colour change to lighter or darker. The pile of the rug needs chance to settle over a period of a few weeks so it all runs in the same direction. Regular vacuuming can help sort this out.
A common mistake is placing indoor plants on your handmade rug. Placing potted plants on rugs is inviting trouble since there is a good chance the water and mud may seep through unnoticed and leave marks and dampen the rug. The continuous exposure to damp and mud may cause the backing of the rug to come off and damage the fibres of the rug beyond repair.
Care should also be taken when placing furniture on the rugs, the stands often leave deep dents in the rug spoiling its surface. Avoid placing heavy furniture on your rug and if you do, it would be a good idea to use casters.
Spills and stains - dreaded words for handmade rug connoisseurs. Here’s a quick briefing on what to do when stains happen. Most light dirty marks can be cleaned with a damp cloth. Spills should be cleaned immediately and not left for later. It is NEVER ideal to rub a spill.
If your silk rug becomes damaged contact a professional rug cleaner immediately. With wool rugs, carefully blot liquids with a dry absorbent cloth or white paper towel. Some stains may be cleaned with a very mild clear detergent and lukewarm water or a good rug shampoo. When using cleaning products, you need to be careful with which ones you use. As a general rule of thumb, go for products that will remove dust, stains, and bacteria. For exact results, go for products that are designed specifically for your rug material. If you aren’t sure of whether the product will damage the rug, do a patch test on the corner of the rug where any effects won’t create noticeable damage. Avoid excessive moisture or wetting when cleaning the stain. Dry as quickly as possible and vacuum. Carefully comb the pile in its natural direction to remove any matting.
If a stain cannot be removed you should seek specialist cleaning advice. Avoid harsh chemicals as they may damage the rug. Do not machine wash or dry clean your rug (unless the label on the back of the rug instructs that you can do so).
Working with different types of stains.
• Pet Stains
Many pet owners are faced with the challenge of cleaning up a mess from their adored pet. There are methods and substances that can rid the odour acquainted with these types of accidents, and remove the carpet stains entirely. First, clean up the initial mess. If there is debris on the rug, pick it up with gloves and dispose of it. If it is wet, simply use the blot method. If the stain has already dried on the rug fibres, the best way to is to moisten it. Then apply a rug stain cleaning product specifically formulated for pet stains. Many cleaning products come with odour control. To neutralize the odour try using white vinegar (you may also substitute white vinegar for white wine) to perform this action. Simply mix 1/4 cup of vinegar with a quart of warm water and spritz on the stain. Allow the vinegar spray to soak for several minutes and then proceed with the blot technique until stain is gone and spot is dry.
• Coffee Stains
Coffee stains can leave your handmade rug looking filthy if not treated properly. Dry the spot by blotting with a dry white towel. Apply the mixture of vinegar, water, and a gentle, non-bleach detergent first with the spritzer method, rinse, and repeat. There are several products that are sold in stores for these type of stains. Always perform a patch test to assure no damage from chemicals will present themselves. Use as directed and beware some chemicals are harmful to the skin so wear gloves as a precaution when using these stain removing products.
• Blood Stains
When treating blood spots on rugs, always use cold water instead of warm or hot water. This is important because blood coagulates with heat, and cold will prevent the blood from permeating into the rug fibres. Fill a spritzer bottle with 2 tsp. of a grease-fighting, liquid dish detergent and cold water, then spray on the stain. Liberally moisten it so that the rug stain is entirely soaked. Then use a paper towel or a dry white cloth to blot the spot so that the blood is transferred to the cloth. Rinse with cold water and repeat if necessary. After several tries, your custom rug should look like new again.
• Ink Stains
Dampen a clean white cloth with isopropyl alcohol and then proceed by dabbing the wet cloth on the ink stained rug. Be careful not to rub or scrub! This could cause the ink spot to spread. Let it stand for a few minutes and then use a liquid friendly vacuum to remove the excess moisture. You may need to treat the rug stain with the alcohol again. Also some hair sprays work, nail polish removers, and other things that contain high contents of alcohols (even white wines and vinegars may be used.) When using any of these chemicals, rinse with water, then blot or vacuum dry until spot is dry. Be sure to always perform a test on a small area of the rug to make sure these cleaning solutions will not lead to further damage on certain types of rugs.
Most of these techniques and procedures use household chemicals, cleaners and supplies to remove stains. If none of these prove to be fruitful, it is best to consult professional rug cleaners. If your home has wall to wall carpeting or your rug gets a lot of use, have your custom rug professionally deep cleaned once a year by a cleaner.