How To Wash and Store Quilts: The Complete Guide

Coastal stripes quilt set from Southshore Fine Linens.

Washing a quilt may feel like an intimidating task. You don't want to snag the fine stitching or lose the vibrant colors. They are, after all, some of the most luxurious and artistic bedding items available, meant to serve as showstoppers. Here at Southshore Fine Linens, we understand the importance of properly caring for your quilts. That's why we've compiled this complete guide on washing and storing them.

Follow these steps to ensure your quilts stay in top condition for years, helping your linens reach heirloom status for future generations to enjoy.

How to wash quilts

Learning how to wash a quilt isn't just about keeping it clean. It's about preserving its quality and extending its life. The key is to do it gently and effectively. Here is a step-by-step guide for doing just that.

Step 1: Check the label

Before washing your quilt, check the label for specific instructions. Some quilts may have special care requirements or materials that cannot be cleaned in a machine. Without special instructions, you can move on to step two.

Step 2: Pre-treat stains

If your quilt has any stains, it's important to pre-treat them before washing. Use a gentle stain remover and let it sit for the recommended time before washing. You can buy a product that won't hurt the delicate stitching and fabric or make your own using equal parts water and white vinegar.

Pre-treat the stain by gently dabbing it with a cloth or soft-bristled brush. Do not rub the stain vigorously, as this can cause damage.

Step 3: Choose a gentle detergent

Selecting the right detergent is crucial when washing your quilt. Avoid harsh detergents or those with bleach, as they can damage the fabric and colors. The best option is to use a gentle, mild detergent specifically designed for delicate fabrics. You can also opt for a quilt-specific detergent if you prefer.

Step 4: Use cold water

When washing quilts, cold water is the way to go. Hot water can cause shrinkage and damage the fabric fibers. Many washing machines offer "cold" or "room temperature" settings, so make sure these are selected for both the soaking and rinsing cycles.

Step 5: Wash with care

When washing your quilt, you want the machine to act similarly to a hand wash, moving gently to avoid disturbing the fabric. Also, make sure to wash the quilt all by itself so it has plenty of space to move around.

You will want to avoid using fabric softeners as these can leave a residue and damage the fabric.

Select a gentle cycle, preferably one specifically for delicate items like quilts. You can also use the manual option on a washing machine to select the slowest spin speed. This will prevent damage to the quilt's stitching and fabric.

Selecting the extra rinse cycle is okay, especially if the quilt is heavy or large. This will ensure all the detergent and cleaning agents are rinsed out completely.

Step 6: Dry the quilt

After washing, it's important to dry your quilt properly. You can opt for air drying or tumble drying on low heat. As mentioned before, ensure your quilt's label says using a dryer is safe. There may be delicate applications that won't hold up to the heat.

Toss in some wool dryer balls to prevent clumping when using a dryer.

If air drying, lay it flat, on a drying rack, or hang it on a clean surface or a clothesline. Check your quilt periodically and flip it over to ensure both sides dry evenly. Avoid direct sunlight, which can cause fading, especially if your quilt has vibrant colors.

Feel free to use an iron on a very low heat setting to remove any remaining wrinkles if needed.

Shop for high-quality quilts at Southshore Fine Linens today!

How to store quilts

As seasons and styles change, so does our bedding. So, it's important to know how to store a quilt to keep it up over time. There are lots of pesky things that can damage your quilt, from light to moths. So, knowing how to store bedding can save you the time, money, and hassle of frequently buying new accessories.

Step 1: Clean thoroughly

Before storing your quilt, it's essential to ensure it's clean and free of any stains. Follow the washing instructions mentioned above and let it dry completely before proceeding to the next step.

Step 2: Use a cotton storage bag

Cotton is a breathable material that circulates air, preventing mold and mildew. Avoid using plastic bags or containers as they can trap moisture and cause damage.

Step 3: Add protection

To further protect your quilt, wrap it in acid-free tissue paper before placing it in the cotton storage bag. This will help prevent any discoloration over time.

You can also add cedar chips or lavender sachets to your storage bag for added protection against moths and other pests. These natural remedies will also add a pleasant scent to your stored quilt.

Step 4: Store in a cool, dry place

When storing your quilt, choose a cool and dry place away from direct sunlight. Basements or attics are not ideal, as they can be prone to fluctuations in temperature and humidity. Instead, opt for a closet or under-the-bed storage solution.

Step 5: Check and refold periodically

It's important to periodically check on your stored quilt, especially if it will be stored for a long time. This will help prevent any damage or discoloration that may occur. You can also refold the quilt to prevent any creases from forming.

Southshore Fine Linens' patterned quilts add a pop of life to any room. Shop today.

Types of quilts to consider when washing

You may wonder what types of quilts can be washed and stored with the above methods. All the quilts we offer at Southshore Fine Linens can be washed following the instructions above. Here's what we offer:

  • Solid colors: Our solid-colored quilts are easy to wash and store. They maintain their vibrant hues even after multiple washes. These are especially important to dry outside of direct sunlight.
  • Cotton quilts: Known for their breathability, cotton quilts can be cleaned and stored easily. The fabric is durable and gets softer with each wash. They're best for those who need to clean their bedding frequently.
  • Daybed sets: Our daybed sets are designed for everyday use and withstand regular washing. To keep them in the best condition, just follow the instructions above.
  • Printed quilts: With intricate designs, our printed quilts require careful washing to preserve their patterns. But don't worry, they're still suitable for the abovementioned washing method.

When you learn how to care for bedding properly, you can purchase a variety of quilts to change up your bedding throughout the year.

Check out Southshore Fine Linens' selection

Kilim oversized quilt set from Southshore Fine Linens.

With this guide, you're well on your way to properly washing your quilts and extending their lifespan.

At Southshore Fine Linens, we offer a wide selection of high-quality quilts that are perfect for any home. From classic designs to modern patterns, our quilts are made with premium materials and expert craftsmanship.

Don't wait any longer to elevate your bedroom with a beautiful quilt. Shop our collection today, knowing that washing a quilt will now be a breeze when using our guide above.