Question for the wise ones

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Don Draper

Well-known member
Aug 10, 2008
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Our dryer was on the fritz last week (of course the week I have my number one housekeeper here doing DEEP cleaning and I am trying to get all the mattress covers, dust ruffles, curtains, etc. washed...).
Anyway, I didn't realize it but the drum stopped spinning and the heating element was still one of my very favorite matelasse covers got scorch marks on it (it's tan so I can't bleach it). I have a feeling it's a goner but thought I'd ask if any of the vets here had any recommendations for trying to remove the marks. Thank you!
oh dear ... the methods i know of with lemon juice and sunshine, peroxide, and white vinegar are all for white fabric. i don't know what will happen with tan fabric. maybe test a little tiny part of the scorched area and see? i could not remove some staining once and so used tea and then coffee to darken (dye) the entire piece.
Great tips and thank you very much! The cover is unusable the way it is anyway, so it won't hurt to try some of these methods to see if it helps. I'll let you know if anything works!
Let's say you don't get the scorch marks can then cut up the spread into a throw or a couple of decorative pillow covers. Those matelasse covers are very nice for pillow covers, heavy & usually nice decorative work on them. You could probably get a couple of pillow shams out of it also. Or a table topper.
Please post your results. I'm really curious to see how something that is burnt can be restored, unless it's just a matter of scraping the char off like you can do with toast, sometimes. I would think that once a fiber is damaged and changed from its original form that it's a goner. So, tell us what comes of the tricks for trying to save it.
As for the dryer, it just needs a new belt.
The scorch marks are fading!!! Thank you all so much for your suggestions. The blanket had been through the dryer (that's how it got scorched), so I first took it and soaked for an hour in cold water, with detergent. After spinning it, I took it out, laid it over the ironing board, and started dabbing white vinegar over the scorched areas with a paper towel. I decided to try this method first as DH thought the hydrogen peroxide and/or lemon might bleach out the tan fabric.
After wetting all the scorched areas, I folded the cover in on itself and basically let it sit overnight (mostly because we had so much other laundry to catch up on now that the dryer is fixed...yes, it was a belt and a pulley that needed to be replaced, it is working like a champ now).
This morning I re-soaked the cover in cold water and detergent and just spread it out on the ironing board again...I would say 90% of the marks are completely gone, and the ones that remain are much fainter (and they were the marks that were worst/darkest to begin with). Plus the cover itself is NOT faded or bleached looking at all. I've just gone through and re-treated the remaining areas with vinegar again, will soak and rewash tomorrow AM and see where we stand.
I'm thrilled, this cover can definitely be used here at the Inn and I thought for sure it was a goner! Thanks again for your very prompt answers!
Scorching means the fiber has been burned. I don't know how badly you mean but here are a few things you can at least try. Good luck.
Tip #1: To remove a scorch mark from linen or white cotton fabric, dip a piece of old fabric in hydrogen peroxide, lay it on the scorched portion of the fabric, and rub with a hot iron (not too hot). If it doesn't work the first time, repeat until the stain is completely removed.
Tip #2: If you scorch cotton fabric while ironing, plunge into cold water immediately and let stand 24 hours. The scorched areas will disappear.
Tip #3: To remove scorch mark, take a clean, soft cloth moistened with white vinegar and rub over discolored area. Take another clean cloth dampened with water and rub area again. Continue pressing or ironing garment.
Tip #4: To remove a scorch mark from clothing, rub the mark with a lemon and set garment out in the sun.