How To Clean Vintage Silk Fabric

Take special care when deciding how to clean vintage silk fabric. It is a very delicate material and needs special treatment when it comes to cleaning. Hand washing can damage can damage some silk, but most vintage silk fabric can be washed safely without any damage.

Here is what you will need to clean vintage silk fabric properly:

  • tepid water
  • quarter cup of white vinegar
  • mild detergent
  • white cloth


  1. Test the vintage silk fabric before washing, to see if it can handle it. Crush the fabric in your hand, then let go. If it feels full and smoothes out quickly, it can handle being hand washed. If the vintage silk fabric holds the wrinkle, have it dry cleaned when deciding how to clean vintage silk fabric.
  2. If the silk has a lot of color to it, test for color fastness. Dampen the vintage silk fabric inside a seam, if it has one, and wait a several minutes. Dab the spot with a white cloth. If the color appears on the white cloth, the dye will run when washed, and you must have the vintage silk fabric dry cleaned.
  3. When the vintage silk fabric can be hand washed, use luke warm tepid water with mild detergent. Add a quarter cup of white vinegar in the first rinse, to remove soap build up.
  4. Rinse with water one last time. If there is a label on the vintage silk fabric and it states that the vintage silk fabric can be ironed, do so. Iron when the vintage silk fabric is still damp for best results. Hang the vintage silk fabric to air dry when you clean vintage silk fabric.



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