Tips To Caring Your Silk Rugs
Silk rugs are notoriously delicate and need to be handled with care. Caring for silk rugs can be a more difficult and time-consuming job than rugs made of synthetic fiber or wool because silk, itself, is a protein that resembles human hair, and is more readily damaged than other rug fibers. Since almost all silk rugs are handmade rugs, they also need individual hand cleaning to preserve their quality. Preventing initial damage to the rug is the first step in its proper care. Silk rugs should be placed in low-traffic areas and out of direct sunlight, which, over time, can fade the dyes in the rug. If a rug is in an area that receives significant foot traffic, it should be rotated 180 degrees periodically to maintain even levels of wear to its surface. Ultraviolet light in sunlight is also a common reason for colors to fade, yet most modern windows filter out this type of light naturally, and older window panes can be coated with a light filtering film available at hardware stores.
Before dealing with a stain, spill, or animal urine, it is important to determine if the rugs are pure silk or a combination of silk and wool. A silk-and-wool combination rug will show more durability and resistance to stains, and water will bead up on a rug with wool content, since it is water-resistant. A definitive test is to remove a small section of loose thread from the back of the rug and burn it. Silk will have a distinctive hair-like smell when burning and ball up into a pile of ash, whereas other fibers can smell like paper or plastic and melt as they burn.