Friday, June 24, 2011

Soaking Linens

I am going to give a tip on soaking linens.
I am sure those of us who love linens,of course (I do!) and monograms (doesn’t have to be PFB) however, the monogram must be unusually beautiful. I look for them at flee markets, estate sales, anywhere - napkins, sheets, hand towels - either new or old must be divine.  

This is a trick I learned growing up in the south, it takes everything out! Rust, lipstick, wine, butter... What is that? Stains.  I soak my linens in Sodium Perborate.
I have never heard of this before so ---shhhh keep it to yourself, dear readers 

According to Wikipedia,
Sodium Perborate serves as a source of active oxygen in many detergents, laundry detergents, cleaning products, and laundry bleaches. It is also present in some tooth bleaching formulas. It is used as a bleaching agent for internal bleaching of a non vital root treated tooth. The sodium perborate is placed inside the tooth and left in place for an extended period of time to allow it to diffuse into the tooth and bleach stains from the inside out. It has antiseptic properties and can act as a disinfectant. It is also used as a "disappearing" preservative in some brands of eye drops.

I have bought Sodium at drugstores (in the South - they stock it) but in LA they must order it for you- For those who like to shop online, you can get it on Amazon or Humco

 So here goes - the Directions (these are not on the Sodium Perborate container)

It only works on pure cotton, linen, etc.  No synthetic fabrics! I have even soaked a piece of silk with success.

1. In a bath tub, plastic bowl or any container that your item / items can be submerged in -
 use 6T of Sodium Perborate per gallon of water.

The most amazing thing about this product is that you can leave the items in for as long as you like. The fibers do not suffer damage and is color safe. (That I know of)

2. After soaking for 24 - 48 hours check to see if the stain is gone - if not, (some stains are tough)
add a bit more of Sodium Perborate and soak longer. If the water turns dirty, I usually start over with fresh water and Sodium Perborate. 

3. The next step is washing the Sodium Perborate out of the fabric with a mild detergent. It will dry stiff if you do not, which is OK. However, it doesn't feel good. Hang dry in sun light, if you can, after it is washed.

4. Iron the item, I usually use a little bit of sizing or starch.

Viola, that piece of linen you thought was no good is back to being great looking once again!

To see your vision come to life, email us about our design services at Peggy Braswell Design

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  1. Wow! Peggy thank you for stopping by our Swedish Interiors blog. If you had not we may not have discovered your excellent blog and this great post on Sodium Perborate! Thank you for sharing! Edie

  2. So Wise and great tips ever! thanks for sharing!Love your blog-site :)

  3. Peggy thank you so much for this tip as I love vintage linens!!

    Art by Karena

    I have a New, very fashionable Giveaway on my site! Come and enter!

  4. Thank you Victoria,& Edie for your kind comments. Karena, I will trot over to your site immediately. Love

  5. Brilliant! Saving this one Peggy.....xv

  6. Ohhh thank you, very practical...
    I hope that you are spending a wonderful week,



  7. Thank you sweet Cecilia...xxpeggy