Velour fabric is used for a variety of products from clothing to upholstery and even the interior of cars. It’s known for being sturdy and resistant to most stains, but it can get dirty and should be cleaned regularly. To wash velour, you can use a washing machine, hand wash more delicate items, or use a cleaning spray for velour upholstery.
Using a Washing Machine
Read the care label to ensure that the item can be machine-washed. Most blankets, pillows, and clothing will have a tag on the fabric that explains how to care for the item. Check along the seam for the tag, and read it carefully. If the fabric doesn’t have a care label, you may be better to hand wash it just to be safe.
Place the fabric in a mesh laundry bag. For velour clothing and other fabric items, a trip through the washing machine with other clothes can damage the fabric. Putting the item in a laundry bag will protect it from buttons, zippers, and clasps on other clothes in the machine. If you don’t have a laundry bag, use a clean cotton pillowcase as a protective cover for the item.
Add half a capful of mild/gentle laundry detergent to the machine. Try to look for a detergent that is labeled as mild or gentle. Use the right amount of detergent for the size of the load that you’re washing. Try to avoid pouring laundry detergent directly onto the velour, especially if the detergent is blue or green colored. The detergent can stick to the fabric and leave a mark.
Select the “warm” and “gentle” settings on the washing machine. Warm water on a gentle cycle will help to loosen dirt and lint from the fabric without harming the delicate fibers. Use the dial or buttons on the panel of the washing machine to select the right settings. For heavier fabrics, like curtains, you can use the normal cycle to ensure that they are thoroughly washed.
Place the fabric in the dryer on low heat to tumble dry. Velour is a lot sturdier than other velvet-like fabrics, so it can stand up to time in the dryer. Depending on the size of the item, you may need to add extra time to ensure that it’s completely dry. Alternatively, you can hang the item in indirect sunlight to dry. This process takes longer but is also safer for the fabric.
Washing Velour by Hand
Fill a laundry tub with cool water and mild laundry detergent. Add about 1 tablespoon (15 mL) of laundry detergent to the tub of water, and mix it around to create bubbles in the water. The water should be cool, but not so cold that you can’t hold your hand in the water for a minute or so. If you end up making the water too cold, add a bit of warm water to heat it up quickly without having to drain the tub.
Let the fabric soak for 10 minutes in the water. Push the fabric into the water until it’s completely submerged. Leave it in the water to absorb the cleaning detergent and loosen any mats and dirt in the fabric. If the fabric is visibly dirty or dusty, swirl it around in the tub for 1-2 minutes before letting it soak. This will help to remove most of the dirt!
Rub the fabric gently with a piece of muslin to remove dirt and lint. After the fabric has absorbed the detergent, take a piece of muslin fabric and rub it over velour fabric. Be sure not to press too hard, as that can flatten the fibers. For a larger item, you may need 2-3 pieces of muslin to pick up all of the dirt and lint from the fabric.
Rinse the fabric with cool water until the water runs clear. Drain the tub or sink and run the fabric under running water. Make sure that every part of the fabric is rinsed thoroughly and that all of the detergent is removed from the velour.
Roll the fabric in a clean towel to remove excess moisture. Using a large towel, like a bath towel, blot the water off of the velour. Don’t wring or press the fabric, which can cause damage and flat areas. It’s best to use an older towel because velour can sometimes bleed dye from its fibers when the fabric is wet.
Hang the fabric to air dry completely. Let the fabric dry for at least 6 hours on a hanger or clothesline. If you don’t have a clothesline, lay the fabric on a flat surface, and flip it over halfway through the drying time to ensure that it dries evenly on both sides. After 6 hours, touch the fibers to make sure they’re completely dry on the front and back of the fabric.