Mendip Silks
Mendip Silks
Mendip Silks
Care of Silk
Pure silk and water are quite compatible. It does not go mouldy even after long periods of being damp. If there is a large amount of gum left, this can begin to ferment and give off an odour, but the smell should wash away.

Care of silk is similar to caring for wool. Both are protein based as they come from animals. Silk is not dissimilar to human hair or skin and a rule of thumb is to treat it in a similar manner to how you would treat your hair, which is to hand wash gently in luke warm water. (You can even use a mild shampoo.). Try to find an alkali neutral soap, such as "Lux", with which to wash silk. Make sure all traces of soap are removed as even the mildest soaps contain some alkali. It is the alkalis in detergents that remove the natural oils and begins to break down the proteins. Never use bleach.

It is not suitable to wash fabrics with special finishes as these may be washed away. Never wash moiré (watermarked) fabrics, for example. Check for colourfastness, as the colour can wash out also.

Always handle with care. Squeeze or allow to drip dry. Never wring or rub.

Do not expose silk for large lengths of time to sunlight. It will break down the fibres over time. Preferably dry flat away from direct sunlight.

During washing, shrinkage may occur due to the fibre absorbing moisture. Preferably, the fabric should have been pre-shrunk but pressing on a silk heat setting should return it to close its original size.

Silk has a natural elasticity which does not hold creases well. Start with a dry iron on the silk setting, preferably while the garment is still a little damp. Steam can be used on heavier silks, but could cause puckering and shrinkage on finer fabrics. Make sure it does not leave a shiny finish. It is safer to iron with a cloth or on the wrong side. A tip: if ironing is required on smaller items like a blouse, pop it into a plastic bag in the freezer for an hour. It will absorb the moisture and make ironing easier.

Do not iron silk velvets. Wrinkles will drop out if hung in the bathroom while having a shower. This steaming can work on other silks too.

Silk can be dry cleaned. Any silk with an embossing or moiré finish, if the dirt is oily or greasy or if you are just unsure, go and visit your professional dry cleaner.
button history button silk worm life cycle button qualities of silk button types of silk
button quilts For further details on caring for quilts, click here.
Silk Worm Lifecycle Qualities of Silk Types of Silk Care of Silk

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