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Caring for Your Tapestry

A professional should clean a tapestry that is very old and valuable. Some tapestries can usually be washed at home. Use suds made from mild soap flakes and warm water. Dry carefully and use a steam iron for pressing.

Old antique tapestries often have flaws and holes. The most successful mending is to replace worn warps and to reweave the weft threads. An easier method is to attach a patch to the back and darn the hole. A serious drawback to this is that the patch is likely to shrink or pull if the tapestry is washed.

Moths and mildew and strong sunlight are tapestries' three worst enemies. A moist atmosphere can cause deterioration of fibers and is responsible for fading of colors. Strong light can have a disastrous effect on tapestries. Textiles are subject to fading over time if placed in direct sunlight. You may wish to take precautions to minimize fading


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