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Upholstery

First you need to determine whether your upholstery is recent or antique. Very little upholstered antique furniture boasts the original upholstery, but if it does it requires very special care and attention.

Cleaning

- For modern upholstery (or for upholstery you intend to replace or refresh on a regular basis) use commercially available upholstery cleaning products but be careful not to allow these products to damage antique wood or metalwork.

- For antique coverings, leather or textiles, never use non-specialist solvent or even water based commercially available upholstery cleaning products. Even a relatively inert cleaning mixture of warm water with soda crystals may damage antique textiles.

- As a general rule, discuss any cleaning of textile based antique upholstery with a suitably qualified textile conservator. Sturdy textile based antique upholstery, however, may be cleaned by covering with a microfilament net and "hoovered" lightly. Use the lowest setting and take care. If fibres, rather than dirt are being removed, stop immediately.

- Leather based upholstery may also be cleaned using a specialist leather polish (see on-line shop for a range of suitable products).

- Removal of any stains or marks from either leather or textiles should again be discussed with a suitable qualified conservator.

Repair

- It is recommended that any repair of textile or leather based upholstery is undertaken by a suitably qualified conservator or restorer.

Display

- If you use your antique upholstery take care to protect from food, drink, zips on trousers/skirts, leaking pens, cigarettes, cigars, pipes etc.

- Never place antique upholstery in direct sunlight as both leather and textile based upholstery can fade or change colour.

- Protect from excessive humidity and damp as both can encourage mould or fugal growth.

- Especially protect textile based upholstery from insects. Insect lava and pupae will quickly destroy any fabric.

Handling

- Remove rings, bracelets or any other sharp object that may potentially damage the upholstery.

- Normally handle with white cotton gloves.

Storage

- Again, adequately protect from damage while storing. The use of acid free covers is recommended.

The Trusted Experts on the site will advice you about restoration and many other matters related to what we hope will be a very enjoyable and at times profitably hobby and past time.

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