Handmade rugs, with their expressive designs and intricate patterns and colors, have been an integral component of any well-furnished interior. From Aubussons, Savonnerie and Persians to Modern Tibetan, in every style of interior from traditional to contemporary, designers have used these beautiful pieces of art to complement our decors.
A designer may choose the rug as a pallet for the space and then furnish the room. Others may design the entire room and then look for that perfect rug to finish off the space. Beautiful rugs are no longer limited to main living areas. Bathrooms, kitchens and outdoor living join this long tradition, especially as new materials such as natural fiber rugs are becoming more popular in certain settings and living environments.
Preserve the value and keep your home safe
An area rug acts like an air filter—it absorbs, collects and attracts everything in the air, from dust particles, pollen and bacteria to all household chemicals. Did you know that a person sheds about 1.5 million skin cells every hour, feeding the festering bacteria that lie within your rug’s fiber? A rug, just like any other filter, must be cleaned periodically. Dirty rugs can be unhealthy and hazardous for everyone.
Important steps to follow:
Vacuum Frequently: Dust particles are settling deep in your rug fibers and acting like tiny razor blades as you walk on it. Avoid the fringes by vacuuming along the side; you will damage the foundation of your handmade rug when fringes are pulled.
Rotate Your Rug: Continuous walking over the same spot and furniture marks can cause stains and discoloration.
Sun Damage: If your rug is near a window, the sunlight will cause permanent damage. If you cannot avoid the sunlight, rotate your rug to even out the color. Of course, it is much better to treat the windows, draw the shades and fix the root problem.
Potted Plants: If you must place a potted plant on a rug, always elevate it. Regardless of the type of saucer or barrier you use, there will be moisture buildup, as there is always a difference between the room’s ambient temperature and the soil in the pot that results in condensation. This will cause mold growth and damage the rug fiber. The rug needs to breathe and have air flow under the pot. Use a riser with legs to create air flow under the pot.
Looking for Mold: Mold can grow under dark spots of large furniture pieces. This is damaging to the rug fiber and your health. Pollen, dust and mold have been linked to causes of allergy and asthma. You must inspect for mold regularly.
Pet Accidents: Chances are your little puppies or older dogs have had their share of your beautiful rug. Uric acid will not only stain your rug, it will eat away the rug fibers and cause permanent damage over time. In the case of a pet accident, topical solutions will not be effective in removal of the uric acid, and the smell will not go away until the pet urine is properly removed. You must have your rug professionally cleaned immediately.
Wine, Juice and Other Stains: The best solution is to use a white cloth or paper towels to remove excess fluids right away. Gently tab and do not rub. Add some water to dilute the stain, and dab and remove the access liquid again. The idea is dilution, so repeat the steps. Do not attempt to use any advertised “gimmicks” or home remedies on your valuable handmade rugs. All you will be doing is adding a different chemical to the mix. Contact your professional area rug cleaner and let them handle the stain.
Professional Rug Cleaning: You must clean your area rug annually. The myth and ill advice that rugs don’t need cleaning often is wrong and obsolete. Merchants and rug collectors were always afraid of rug damage due to improper washing. Some simply do not have the best interest of consumers in mind. How many wool, silk, cotton and other fabrics are in your closet that have gone without cleaning for years? Remember, a healthy home is a happy home.