How to Make Spring Cleaning a Snap

Mar, 2011  
In This Issue
The Secret to Cleaning Window Treatments
Low Maintenance Choices when Decorating Your Home
Save 40% on Woven Wood Shades
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Designer Discounts!
We can help you find what you're looking for AND save you money.  Discounts available at these fine retail stores:

Crate & Barrel

1st Dibs - search for antiques galore all over the nation

Ballard Designs

Pottery Barn

Williams Sonoma Home

West Elm

Modloft Furniture - a rare find - 79" in height (most retail mirrors are less than 70")
floor mirror

Frontgate - outdoor furniture line now available for viewing

Calico Corners

Prosource Floors

Bellacor Lighting

LampsPlus Lighting

Capitol Lighting

Smith & Noble

And more!
Embellishments Masthead
Dear Jane-Marie,
portraitAre you having trouble getting motivated this "spring"?  Here it is, 3 days before the end of the month, and I'm just now sending you a newsletter!  I think it's the fact that my eyes have been looking at white ground for the past 5 months - I need some spring color to get me thinking!  One thing I am motivated to do is spring cleaning - I know, sick and wrong - I actually used to ask kids if I could clean their rooms when I would go over to play (their mothers loved me!).  Read below for tips on how to keep your decor looking fresh!

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Embellishments Design Studio is available to speak at your group's next function.  Contact me for more information!   
The Secret to Cleaning Window Treatments the Right Way
silk panelIf you have purchased custom-made window treatments or decorative items from me in the past, you know that you receive Care Instructions with every order.  I give you the fabric content of your items and the names of reputable cleaners in the area.  Of course, who sits in bed at night saying, "I think I'll read my care instructions from Jane-Marie".  So, here are the main points you need to remember:

  • Never wash or launder custom treatments, upholstery or accessories.
  • Regular vacuuming with a brush attachment is a must in order to keep dust at bay.  If you do this, you won't have to do the next step nearly as often . . .
  • According to Michael Busch of Cleaner Image Solutions in South Carolina, "the best process for deep cleaning all decorative fabrics is an on-site extraction process where the treatments are cleaned right where they hang. Therefore no take down or rehang is required, the amount of time it takes to clean them on site is about the same as it takes to remove and re-install. Heat is seldom used, cleaning solutions add optical brighteners and revive the natural sizing in the fabric so they can be shaped and displayed like they were when new. They are dry in just a few short hours, and receiving compliments immediately.  These technicians also guarantee against shrinkage or damage.  The accessories and bedding items can also be renewed by the same process so there is no color or handling difference between the items."
  • I recommend having your treatments professionally cleaned no more than once every 5 - 10 years.   
  • For hard treatments such as blinds and shades, I've gotta guy for that too - give me a call if you need to have yours cleaned and removing them and soaking them in your bathtub doesn't sound like a fun time. 
Scrubbable Paints, Bullet-Proof Fabrics, Cleanable Flooring and More
Of course, the rest of your house is getting an overhaul this month as well.  Here are my top picks for the most cleanable home decor items:
  • Paint:  The most washable paint finish is a high gloss or semi-gloss finish, but we tend to not like the look of a shiny wall surface since it shows all imperfections.  If you want to achieve that nice, high end, chalky look on your walls, Benjamin Moore's Regal Matte finish is my top choice.Sta-Kleen Faux Leather 
  • Fabrics:  Leather, Cotton, Wool, Polyester, Poly Vinyl Chloride - all of these are great choices for medium to heavy use fabrics.  They stand up to a beating and can be easily cleaned.  Check out the new fabric from Kravet called Sta-Kleen.  Simply rub out most stains and marks with a dry cloth, or at most, with an ordinary household rubbing alcohol on a clean cloth. Sta-Kleen is the first faux leather with a hand and tactile feel closest to real leather.
  • Flooring:  Sorry, you're going to have to use a bit of elbow grease on this category - they haven't perfected a self-cleaning flooring option yet.  However, you can minimize the amount of cleaning you do by choosing a wool carpet.  Wool is:
    • Highly resilient (will outlast any nylon carpet) 
    • Soil-resistant  
    • Flame-retardant
    • Non-allergenic
    • Non-toxic
    • Resistant against bacterial growth
    • Dust mite-resistant due to the high lanolin content
    • Check out these maintenance tips from one of my favorite wool suppliers.side chair
  • Case Goods:  Have you ever found your daughter doing caligraphy with permanent ink on your kitchen table and panicked as the ink ran through the newspaper and set into the wood, then took a cotton ball dunked in nail polish remover to remove the ink but destroyed the finish in the process - oh, no of course you haven't, silly me, that was myself I was thinking about!  Well, if I would have had a table top with a Catalyzed Finish, that ink may have never set in the first place.  Both catalyzed table tops and chairs are becoming the norm in high end dining furniture.  A table and 6 chair combo will typically not run more than $6000 and your furniture will last a lot longer.  
Fashion Tech Woven Wood Shades - 40% off through April
Looking to add privacy to your room but don't want to do a typical honeycomb shade?  Wanting a bit more texture to warm up the space?  Can't commit to a fabric on your windows?  Check out woven wood shades - now 40% off from Fashion Tech from now through April.

Can be lined with blackout or privacy lining.  Tape trim can be used to add an accent color.  Motorization also available. 

Call me today for a complimentary consultation.
Embellishments Design Studio provides interior decorating, space planning and color consultations, as well as custom window treatment designs and staging services so that you can transform the house you live in into the home you love!

Embellishments Design Studio is available to speak at your group's next function.  Contact me for more information!

Jane-Marie Bloomberg
Embellishments Design Studio