“How do you clean your outdoor cushions?”
“Do your kids actually sit there to eat?”
“How do you keep your light sofa cushions clean?”
These are all questions I get daily or especially when I post a photo of our light colored sofas. I am here to help a sister out! Share what we use or do to try to keep everything looking clean and if they do have the accidents then how to get that said accident to disappear!
Our outdoor sofa is a light fabric, both our indoor sofa’s are light too and our banquette around our dining table. Yes, in person they are light and free from any stains. And we have three young kids.
Finn took a used match and spread along the top of our cream sofa. Food has been spilled on it. Bird poop. You name it. But you don’t see any of that now.
Our kitchen banquette has had Nutella spilled on it (more than once) red Gatorade and plenty more. Typically the kids do not sit on the cushions when they eat, they sit on the chairs. But occasionally they do when we have friends over. Accidents do happen.
The other day Finn (my two year old obsessed with cleaning) and I tried a couple of different methods. A damp cloth (water only) can typically get the accident out, if treated right away. Make sure you are aware of the type of fabric you are cleaning before you go to town on it. Not all fabrics can be cleaned with water, they require a dry cleaning solvent (read the label or contact manufacturer).
Below are our tips for cleaning and protecting Outdoor and Indoor Cushions-
We found the best way to clean the light cushions to our outdoor sofa was with THIS portable spot cleaner using the solution that came with the cleaner. I do like to stick to “green cleaning” whenever possible. I am a vinegar and water girl all the way. I even tried a natural carpet cleaner in our little spot cleaner even though the instructions clearly say not to. It created a lot of bubbles inside the machine that I quickly washed out. Whoops. I stuck with the cleaning solution that came with the spot cleaner. It really got the cushions the cleanest. I wasn’t able to apply enough pressure without using the spot cleaner.
We tried THIS Natural Carpet & Upholstery Shampoo. It did work great. It got several spots to lighten up a lot, but not completely go away.
The best tip I can give is when you clean your cushions you need to clean the ENTIRE cushion, not just the stain. If you just spot clean most of the time you will notice a slight discoloration. I even used our portable spot cleaner on our linen banquette cushions and it worked wonders! I am really sold on this little machine. We used it on the carpet runner up the stairs and it took out a green stain. Me=Impressed!
I wish I could just tell you a magic all natural cleaning solution for dark stains, I just haven’t found it yet. If you know of a natural cleaner you can use in your portable spot cleaner let me know!
After I clean my outdoor cushions I applied THIS Stain Guard. Then for the outdoor cushions I apply THIS Never Wet Fabric Protection. Let the cushions dry for at least 24 hours before sitting on them. I stood the cushions up to dry out in the sun. (I haven’t used the stain guard on our indoor cushions yet, I just don’t think they need them and not a fan of spraying that on cushions for inside…yet).
I also get asked if we bring in our cushions every night or when it rains. Nope. I actually don’t own a cover for them either. But every night we just stand the cushions up and the pillows so if it does rain the cushions don’t just sit and absorb all that water. They dry much quicker and really hardly take in any water. This method also helps to prevent animals from making their homes on our cushions and they are less likely to get as dirty. We do bring the cushions to our basement at the end of the season (or you could get a cover for them if you don’t have storage).
I hope that helps! I plan on cleaning all of our sofa’s with our new little spot cleaner. The upstairs sofa needs it. I will probably do this method just as needed, but it does take time because all the cushions need to be done at the same time.
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Blog post on our Banquette Cushion HERE
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