Are Velvet Couches High Maintenance?

Velvet is a soft and luxurious material, well known for its elegance and sophistication. However, it does also have a reputation for being high maintenance and difficult to clean, which is why many tend to shy away from this sofa material in the home. But given the advancements in cleaning products and fabric technology, are velvet sofas still considered high maintenance? Have developments in how fabrics are produced and pre-treated changed the way velvet responds to higher levels of use, such as for a sofa or armchair?

We are going to attempt to answer these questions in this guide by taking a look at the developments in how velvet is made, and we’ll discuss new cleaning techniques that can be used to keep your velvet sofa looking in great shape. And to top it off, we’ll also look at what else you can do to keep your velvet looking its best.

Velvet sofa materials: what’s new?

Traditionally, velvet has been made from cotton or silk, weaved and brushed in a certain way to provide the soft touch and sheen of the finish. However, as well as cotton and silk velvet you can also get synthetic velvets made from materials like polyester. These modern types of velvet are much harder wearing and stains don’t penetrate the fabric as deeply, which is always great news for households with kids or pets. Cotton or silk velvets are much more delicate and susceptible to staining and marking. They do look and feel beautiful but are perhaps not ideal if you have busy and bustling family home.

How to clean velvet sofas

Maintaining a clean velvet sofa doesn’t have to be too taxing. In general, care for velvet sofas is the same as care for sofas made using other materials. Try to keep them free from dust and debris with regular vacuuming using the correct attachments, and be careful with staining liquids such as coffee and red wine.

There are also velvet pre-treatments available that allow you to offer some protection to the fabric. However, accidents do happen, and sofas are always likely to get stained and marked, no matter how careful you are. If this does happen you can clean velvet gently and effectively through steaming. This prevents compression of the fabric which can happen with aggressive scrubbing. In fact, you can even use the steam setting of your iron to remove compressed sections from the fabric. Use the steaming iron in the opposite direction to the pile of the fabric but make sure it is on a very low setting and place another fabric between the velvet and the hot surface of the iron.

Despite our best efforts, spills are unavoidable especially when we’re hosting friends and families. When that happens, there’s no need to panic. Simply use spot cleaning techniques such as absorbent paper towels and cloths to soak up any excess. Dab gently and remember not to rub or scrub, as this will drive stains into the fabric.

You should also remember to try, as much as possible, to keep velvet out of direct sunlight. Velvet is prone to fading when exposed to sun so try and position in a way to prevent this from happening. If this is not possible, then you can always cover exposed areas with a throw or cushions.

These are the fundamentals of fabric care for velvet sofas. As long as you stick to these basic principles and maintaining your velvet sofa can be as breezy as a walk in the park.