Caring for Bates Products 101: How Maintain, Clean & Store
Just bought a brand new Bate’s bedspread and want to know how to care for it? Or perhaps yours is a little older, having kept generations of family warm... How do you keep it going strong? Caring for an already well-made, durable object allows it to live up to its full potential and last for a long time. If you serve them, they will reward and serve you! This weeks blog post is dedicated to maintaining, cleaning, and storing all of your beloved Bates products (the old and new) so that they last for years to come.
Lucky for all us Bates lovers, 100% cotton bedspreads are easy to clean and can be machine washed and dried. All it takes is a little know-how and caring! Here we’ll share with you some tips and tricks to help keep your long-lasting Bates products shining and beautiful throughout the years.
It is important to launder 100% cotton products in a way that removes the built up residue, but doesn’t damage the cotton. Aggressive washing procedures (bleach or extra hot water) will cause the cotton to deteriorate over time. It is best to use warm water, a gentle wash cycle, and to dry with warm, but not hot, temperatures.
In order to fully accommodate the size of your blanket, set the load size to large on your washing machine. This will allow it to breathe and move freely during the washing. Set the cycle to a delicate setting, and wash with warm water.
Avoid harsh laundry detergents and bleach or brighteners; instead use a mild, even pre-diluted, liquid detergent. Using an excessive amount of soap over time causes a detergent layer to accumulate. For best results, stick to a smaller cap full. Once the wash cycle is complete, it is advisable to remove your blanket from the machine promptly. Hang it up to dry (take care to evenly distribute the weight), or if using a dryer, tumble dry on a low heat setting.
We all know the nauseating feeling that chases spilling your favorite drink all down your favorite (insert prized, fabric-based item here). Too many favorites colliding at once isn’t always a good thing, especially when Bates bedspreads are at stake! Eating breakfast and drinking coffee in bed may be an excellent Sunday morning ritual (sounds good to us!) but what happens when your mug decides to dump? Or that jelly donut leaks? Fear not! Read on, and you’ll be able to tackle any type of stain with the mind and heart of a champ.
Know your enemy! A few things to keep in mind with stains:
1) It is most ideal to remove the stain as soon as possible. The longer it sits, the harder it will be to remove. Act fast!
2) Heat sets stains, making them more difficult to remove. Try to avoid putting your blanket through the dryer until the stain is as gone as you can make it.
3) Using a liquid bleach alternative is the safest and most effective way to remove stains on cotton (we recommend Tide Plus Bleach Alternative).
Pour a small amount of bleach alternative over the stain, making sure all parts of the affected area are covered. Launder normally in cold water and repeat if necessary (see Machine Washing, above).
To whiten or brighten yellowed spots:
Do not use regular bleach! Believe it or not, continual use of bleaches causes discoloration to worsen with time: as the bleach oxidizes, it yellows the cotton. To make matters worse, repetitive bleach usage damages and then destroys the cotton fibers.
Instead, mix up a paste of cold water plus one of the following cleaners: borax, an oxygen cleaner, or washing soda. Apply this mixture to the area, and let stand for 20 minutes. Rinse with cold water, or if ineffectual, a slightly warmer (but not hot) temperature. Again, do not place in a dryer until the stain has been removed.
Whether you’d like to store your bedspreads for just the summer season, or pack away spare Bate’s products for a longer stretch, taking a few precautions beforehand can make all the difference when you’re hauling them back out!
Dry = Good.
Never store anything remotely wet! The confined spaces of most closets or storage packages seal in moisture, resulting in a moldy, mildew smell when you open them up. Make sure all of your cotton products are clean and dry before tucking them away. Air out your storage space every now and again, giving the air a chance to renew and circulate.
Combat Dust and Mildew:
If you’re worried about your storage area being a bit dusty, invest in a cotton bedding bag to protect your blankets from dust and humidity. Packing your blankets in cotton will allow them to breathe; plastic bags trap in moisture and mildew, and we don’t want that!
Sometimes, there’s no amount of cleanness that protects you from that lovely “just-came-out-of-the-back-closet” sour aroma...and who wants to cuddle up with that? The solution: make it smell like something pleasant! If you’re feeling crafty, make a small drawstring sachet and stuff it with a incense of your choice. Man-made incense can leave a residue, so stick to natural ones such as lavender or cinnamon. Pop it between the folds, and it will help to chase bad scents away.
Have your own surefire ways of cleaning and keeping your Bates products in great condition over time? Feel free to share them in the comments.
Judy Miller said:
Thank you for the information about taking care of and storing blankets and quilts. I have the information copied and will use it with several quilts I have now.
I am so happy you replied and glad you were mentioned in Cabin Masters. I love the program and when the gal came and actually helped with a bedspread, I was smiling. How nice of you to allow her into the factory. I loved the time you spent with her. The bedspreads looked beautiful at the end of the program when the Cabin Masters toured the cabin with friends.
I commend you for your work in the United States. I plan to share your site with several friends in Fairmont. We are indeed a small town of 10,666 people BUT here in MN you know we need great bedspreads for our beds. After all, we have over 50 inches of snow and we recorded 4 major snowstorms this month.
I will come back to your site again as I am thinking about a gal who is to be married soon and I want to give her something from your company.
Blessings and love to everyone,