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100% Linen Shirts

Linen Shirt

If you're having trouble processing 100% linen shirts try a hot head press. Steam air finishing equipment will not give the desired hard finish required for most cellulose fabrics such as linen. F...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 11/16/2017 11:30:58 AM

Acid Damage on Cellulose Fibers

Cellulose Fibers

DLI’s Garment/Textile Analysis Laboratory has seen holes in garments that contain cellulose fibers, such as cotton, rayon, linen, and ramie. The fabric is locally weak. Usually, some discoloration is ...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 12/1/2016 12:45:56 PM

Allergic Reaction


Q: My customer said the jacket I cleaned is causing her skin to itch. Is this possible? A: Some individuals are sensitive or allergic to certain fibers, dyes or finishes present on a fabric from ...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 4/12/2016 10:05:51 AM

Black Garments Shredding

black linen jacket

Q: The black fabric in a black and white jacket is very weak and shredded after cleaning. What could have caused this? A: Certain black fabrics, such as linen, may show damage in creased or folded ...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 6/9/2016 8:42:11 AM

Bonded Fabrics

Distroted Jacket

Caption: The laminated foam liner in this rather new jacket separated badly when drycleaned as labeled, creating the blistered appearance. Q: I have a garment that indicates it can be drycleaned...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 10/16/2015 9:47:21 AM

Broomstick Pleats


Q: A customer complained that a broomstick pleated skirt lost its pleats after cleaning. What happened? A: The general procedure for cleaning any broomstick pleated skirt that is labeled as "Drycle...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 5/18/2018 8:46:50 AM

Caring for Chintz


Spring is a popular time of year to clean household items such as draperies, bedspreads, and dust ruffles. Many of these fabrics are coated with a glossy finish. These finishes are referred to as poli...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 3/27/2018 11:03:22 AM

Caring for Needlepoint


How you clean any needlepoint or embroidery piece depends on the condition of the piece, the nature of the materials used, the results of colorfastness tests, and the type of soiling. Whether you wetc...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 1/11/2018 12:00:11 PM

Caring for Swimwear

Bathing Suit

Q: How should I advise customers on keeping their swimwear in swimmable condition? A: As the summer winds down, your customers may realize that their swimwear doesn’t look as good as it did when th...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 7/23/2018 11:58:04 AM

Chenille Sweaters


Q: How do you clean a sweater with soft, fuzzy yarns in the fabric? What type of fiber is this? A: The sweater described is made with chenille yarns. Short fibers are inserted in the yarn to make ...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 12/15/2016 3:00:32 PM

Cleaning Needlepoints


Hand washing is the preferred method of cleaning needlepoint. Before cleaning, take into account the item's age and condition, soiling, and colorfastness. Examine the item for weak or damaged areas. Y...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 10/4/2016 10:39:07 AM

Cleaning Winter Wear

hat scarf gloves

Q: My customers are bringing in bags of hats, gloves, and scarves. Is there a fast and easy way to clean them? A: Unfortunately, there isn’t. Examine each item for a care label. Follow the instruc...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 3/22/2018 10:38:51 AM

Color Loss Streaks in Denim

steaked denim

Q: I washed some denim jeans and noticed lighter streaks throughout them. What can I do to prevent this problem? A: Color loss streaks of this type may result from a few sources. In some cases, t...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 7/27/2016 10:41:59 AM

Color Variance Due to Facing Materials


Q: My customer complained that the back of her jacket is discolored when she goes outside. What causes this color variance? A: In some cases, facing materials may also be used on the back panels....

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 6/21/2016 8:56:08 AM

Cushion Covers


Q: I just drycleaned two cushion covers off of my best customer’s very expensive sofa and they shredded around the edges. She said the sofa was new, but the damage looks like “dry rot” from old age to...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 7/12/2016 10:20:19 AM

Damage to Coated Fabrics

Stiff coat

Q: I drycleaned a 100 percent nylon outerwear coat and it became very stiff. I read the care label before cleaning and followed the recommended method of care. Is there anything else I could have d...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 1/28/2016 3:07:30 PM

Deterioration of Coatings on Outerwear

outerwear coating

Manufacturers will often add coatings to the reverse side or surface of fabrics to make them more water repellent, wind resistant, and insulated. These coatings, as well as adhesives that are used to ...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 6/11/2018 10:05:43 AM

Distortion of Slip-like Dresses

Slip Dress Icon

Q: Why do slip-like dresses distort so easily? They seem to get skinnier and longer. A: The panels of such dresses are cut on the bias. The bias is the diagonal of a woven fabric between the len...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 2/22/2016 2:55:10 PM

Down Feathers Showing

Down Coat

Q: After I dryclean down jackets I can see the feathers showing through. Am I doing something wrong? A: In many cases, on down filled garments the reverse side of the outer shell fabric is coated w...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 5/18/2016 11:10:36 AM

Finishing Acetate

Microscopic Acetate

Fabrics containing acetate fibers, such as those shown in the microscopic image, require special precautions in the care process. Sometimes dull areas appear on garments containing acetate after finis...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 11/3/2017 12:18:35 PM

Fleece Fuzzballs


Q: My customer is complaining about a rough texture on a once soft, fluffy jacket. Did I do something wrong when I cleaned it? What can I do to make this fabric smoother? A: This sounds like the f...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 8/24/2016 12:20:28 PM

How to Fix a Stretched Knitted Wool Sweater

Wool Sweaters

Q: A customer brought in a knitted wool sweater that had stretched in the waistband and was out of shape now. Is there any way to restore the sweater? A: In most cases, this damage can be remedie...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 1/11/2016 12:38:29 PM

Leather Damage


Q: I clean a lot of leather and suede and normally don’t have many problems. Lately, though, we are seeing a fair number of garments that have thin areas or actual tears after even the most careful cl...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 7/19/2016 1:03:30 PM

Leather or Suede?


Q: How can I tell if a royal blue jacket is a suede or an imitation suede? Do they require different cleaning methods? A: Long ago, the color of “suede” was a good indicator as to its authenticity...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 10/12/2016 10:56:03 AM



Q: I have an account with a nursing home and the bed linens are showing thin areas and holes much faster than expected. What is the life expectancy for such items? Is there something I can do to preve...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 9/26/2016 1:51:33 PM

Mirror Trim

Faded mirror trim

Q: I cleaned a dress with beautiful silver trim on the neckline. After cleaning, the trim was no longer silver. In fact, it looked like plain, clear glass. What happened to the trim? A: Like trims...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 3/7/2016 11:17:37 AM

Perspiration Stains on Silk

Underarm Stain

Perspiration stains usually appear as yellow stains in the underarms and on the back, and may have a noticeable odor. Perspiration is composed of mainly water, but it also contains other substances, s...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 5/1/2018 11:47:51 AM

Potential Silk Color Fixer

Silk Dress

Q: A customer brought in a silk dress that had a light area in the front of the dress where the customer had spilled a drink and then wiped it up. Can this be improved or restored? A: The dress m...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 12/29/2015 11:22:08 AM

Preventing Damage to Hospital Items

hosptial linen

Processing linens for local hospital and nursing homes can be a lucrative side business for many cleaners. Some items may show stiffening barriers, cracks, and rips after repeated washing. Here's w...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 12/20/2017 12:54:32 PM

Problems with Athletic Jackets

Sports Jacket

Many problems can occur on athletic jackets when they are cleaned. In most cases, the garments have a woven body with leather or vinyl sleeves. Also, the garments are usually constructed with contrast...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 10/18/2016 1:42:31 PM

Problems With Two Bolts


Over the years, DLI’s Garment/Textile Analysis Laboratory has received numerous complaints of articles that change color on certain panels during cleaning. This discoloration stops at the seam or pane...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 3/7/2018 8:54:59 AM

Resinous Finishes

Resinous Finishes

Q: I have had several linen garments show holes after cleaning. These holes are in random areas and have a square or rectangular appearance. What causes this damage? A: This damage results from the...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 6/2/2016 2:30:14 PM

Sequin-Covered Gown

Sequin Dressweb.jpg

Q: What is the best way to clean a sequin-covered gown? A: If sequins are glued to the gown, test with the solvent used in your system to see if the glue softens. If it does, do not clean the gown...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 9/14/2016 10:08:30 AM

Shine on Dark Garments

Shine on Velvet

Q: I am having problems pressing dark color navy blue, brown, and black jackets and blazers. What is the best way to press such garments? A: Care must be taken when finishing garments like these. ...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 8/5/2016 11:55:00 AM

Silk Color Problems


After drycleaning, mysterious, local color loss sometimes occurs. Testing shows that the dye and sizing in the fabric are not affected by drycleaning solvents or water. Instead, the dye and sizing are...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 11/1/2016 2:36:07 PM

Stain Removal on Satin

satin weave

Satin is a weave, not a fiber. The fabric has a shiny, smooth surface because yarns pass or float over four or more yarns during the weaving process. This unique characteristic of the weave is also th...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 5/8/2018 2:19:23 PM

Stretching Acrylic Knits

Acrylic Sweater

Q: Many knit garments are constructed of acrylic yarn. Sometimes permanent stretching or distortion occurs after cleaning and steam finishing acrylic knits. Why does this happen? A: Professional c...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 1/9/2017 2:07:41 PM

Stretching of Acrylic Knit Garments

Acrylic is a heat-sensitive, thermoplastic fiber and is susceptible to stretching, especially when it is in a knit construction. Acrylic can be found in many knit items, such as dresses, sweaters, ...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 7/9/2018 1:58:26 PM

Sweater Cleaning Tips


Depending on their fiber type, sweaters are susceptible to various problems, including stretching, shrinkage, pulling, and pilling both from use and cleaning. It is important to check sweaters at the ...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 4/5/2018 2:13:56 PM



Q: Is there any way to correct damage to the pile on velvet? A: Velvet requires special care. Velvet fabrics containing acetate can be damaged during wear and/or cleaning. Spills from any liquids co...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 9/29/2016 11:38:14 AM

Velvet Returns


Fashions come and go. This year, velvet is returning to popularity. The fabric can be delicate and requires special care. Velvet fabrics containing acetate can be damaged during wear and/or cleaning. ...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 9/25/2018 1:21:01 PM

Yarn Slippage

Yarn slippage

Q: Upon delivery of her finished goods, a customer noticed a shifting and distortion of the yarns appearing as thin areas in the underarm of her blouse. What could have caused this? A: This conditio...

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 10/12/2015 1:17:44 PM
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