Wool and Wool Blends
Wool must be treated gently or else it will felt. If you have a woolen item that has been knitted or woven, gentle handwashing is a must. Superwash wool does not require as much gentleness but unless you are positive it is superwash, treat it as described below.
Using a completely clean bucket or pot, fill the vessel 2/3 full with lukewarm water. To the water, add Eucalan (a lovely, no rinse wool wash; available from Amazon or your local yarn shop) or gentle detergent such as Dawn dish soap. After the vessel is full and the soap properly mixed in the water, gently submerge the item you are washing. Let it soak for at least 20 minutes. When removing the item from the water, support the item so it does not stretch. Gently squeeze – never wring – the excess water while supporting the woolen item. If Eucalan or other no-rinse wash is used, there is no need to rinse and you can skip to the next step. If another type of wash, such as Dawn, was used, it is necessary to rinse the item and the temperature of the water used MUST be the same as the temperature of the water from which you just removed the item. Fill the vessel with the appropriate temperature water, gently submerge the item and let it sit for a moment or two. Remove the item as described above and repeat as necessary until the soap has been removed.
Roll the item in a clean towel and squeeze the towel to remove the excess moisture. Remember to support the item so it does not stretch. Lay the item flat and reshape. Allow it to dry. You can gently steam press with a cool iron (using a pressing cloth is often recommended) as needed.
Handwoven cotton towels can be machine washed and machine dried. Recommended temperatures are cool and low. Towels have been pre-shrunk and, if preferred, warm water can be used in the washer.
Cotton scarves will do best with gentle machine washing on cool or handwashing, hanging to damp dry, and then pressing to completely dry. When washing by either method, do not allow the item to sit folded upon itself; this will help to prevent color bleeding. While methods are used to prevent this before selling the item, it never hurts to be cautious!
Table runners will do best with handwashing in lukewarm to warm water, rinsing well, rolling in a towel to remove excess moisture, and then hanging to dry. Do not allow the item to sit folded upon itself while wet; this helps protect against any color bleeding. For best results, use a warm iron when slightly damp.
Items made of Tencel should be handwashed in lukewarm water with mild soap, such as Dawn dish soap. Rinse well, gently squeeze to remove excess moisture, and roll in a clean, dry towel to remove more excess moisture. Hang to dry. When only slightly damp, steam press with a warm iron.
Items made of linen can be machine washed on cool and hung to dry. Delicate scarves or table linens are best washed by hand. Linen should not be machine dried. Steam press with a hot iron.