Cleaning Tablecloths

by Lee Wyatt
(last updated December 23, 2013)

Cleaning tablecloths is not as easy as simply throwing them into a washing machine and being done. For some reason, being able to keep these formal dinning essentials clean takes a little more time than when cleaning sheets or blankets. Tablecloths, typically the fine tablecloths that we use for our fine and formal dinning experiences, are not cheap and require care and patience when protecting these investments. One of the necessary steps in cleaning tablecloths is the correct way of storing them as well.

Materials:

  • Mild dish soap (grease fighting is best)
  • Soft-bristled toothbrush
  • Grease-fighting stain remover
  • Starch
  • Iron
  • Ironing board

Procedure:

  1. Remove. It may sound a bit redundant, but the very first step in being able to properly clean your tablecloth is to remove it from the table. Take it outside and shake it out. This should remove all the loose food that has been spilled on it and help to make it easier to clean.
  2. Spot Treat. Bring your tablecloth back inside and stretch it out on a flat surface. Look over the surface and see if you notice any stains. If not then you can go ahead proceed to the next step. If there are some stains, then you are going to need to spot treat them. Do this by mixing 1/4 cup of grease-fighting dish soap and some hot water. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush to gently scrub the mixture onto the stained areas. Once you have done this, you should be able to begin washing your tablecloth.
  3. Wash. Set your washing machine to warm (if the care instructions say that you can) and begin washing the tablecloth. When you start, do not add any detergent and only place the tablecloth into the washing machine until the tank is halfway full. If, after the wash cycle has been completed, there are still stains, then you will need to try slightly more drastic measures. Try using something along the lines of a grease-fighting stain remover and let it sit on the cloth for about fifteen minutes. Once you are finished, run it through the washing machine again.
  4. Starch. Once you have dried your tablecloth it is time to get it ready for storage. This means that you need to starch and press it. Add some starch to the washing machine during the rinse cycle. Once you have added the starch, just remove the tablecloths from the washing machine after the spin cycle is finished. You should be able to save some time when it comes time to begin pressing them.
  5. Dry. After you have finished washing the tablecloth, it is time to dry it. Do not use a machine to dry it, but try to place it on a flat surface or outside and let it air dry.
  6. Press. Stretch out the tablecloth on an ironing board and let the reverse side be up when you do this. Use low heat and this is going to help avoid any apparent watermarks.
  7. Store. Once you have properly pressed everything, it is time to go ahead and store the tablecloth. Fold the tablecloth nice and neat and then store it in your linen closet. When storing your linens you want to make sure that you are using a location that is well ventilated and avoid using such things as cedar chests, cardboard boxes and plastic bags.

Author Bio

Lee Wyatt

Contributor of numerous Tips.Net articles, Lee Wyatt is quickly becoming a regular "Jack of all trades." He is currently an independent contractor specializing in writing and editing. Contact him today for all of your writing and editing needs! Click here to contact. ...

MORE FROM LEE

Cleaning Your Garage Floor

If you are planning on selling your home, or simply wanting to spruce up the place you might want to think about hitting your ...

Discover More

Building a Koi Pond

If you are looking to incorporate a water feature in your garden or landscape then you may want to consider building a koi ...

Discover More

Cold Pasta Salad

During the hot summer and early autumn months, no one really wants to fire up the oven or stove. One possible course of ...

Discover More

Tough Tools for Tough Cleaning Jobs O-Cel-O sponges and Scotch Brite scrubbers are truly a fashion-meets-function success story. The highly absorbent and durable sponges in this handy six-pack make quick work of tough cleaning problems in any kitchen, bathroom, or garage. Check out Scotch-Brite Heavy Duty Scrub Sponges today!

More Cleaning Tips

Dealing With Maple Syrup Stains

Whether it is fresh, or a day or two old maple syrup can be a fairly difficult stain to remove. When dealing with maple syrup ...

Discover More

Washing Black Clothes

You would think that washing black clothes would be a fairly simple prospect. After all, it's only logical that dirt or ...

Discover More

Save Money and Water When Doing the Laundry

Doing laundry can actually get kind of expensive. This is a pain to have to deal with, but fortunately there are ways to cut ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in Cleaning Tips from Tips.Net. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 4 + 3?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in Cleaning Tips from Tips.Net. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.