Historians estimate that linen fabric has been in existence for nearly 8,000 years, making it the world’s oldest known natural fiber. For many of those centuries, the plant which linen is derived from, flax, has been grown throughout Belgium. Belgian linen has a unique combination of properties that make it special; durability, comfort and ability to easily accept dyes. In addition to those qualities, Belgian linen is highly absorbent, lint-free and non-allergenic. But the reason we love it is because the more it is used, the more beautifully it ages.
However, the question remains, how do you best care for your bedding, drapery and table linens? Here is our quick primer on the dos and don’ts for making your Belgian linen last a life time:
- There is debate on whether you should dry clean your bedding due to chemical off-gassing. Most recommend that you launder your linen bedding on the gentle cycle with warm water (60 Celsius/140 Fahrenheit). Use 1/2 the amount of detergent as suggested and never pour it directly onto your bedding as it could cause staining. In addition, never use bleach, stain removers or bluing agents on your linen bedding as it they may damage the fibers and cause more harm then good.
- When it comes to linen drapery and table linens most experts agree that it is perfectly okay to dry clean those since they may have interfacing that can be damaged during the washing process. Aside from the interfacing, the intricate pleating and folds of many linen window coverings makes them difficult to hand press. Between dry cleanings, vacuum your drapery with a hand-held cleaner or hose attachment.
Drying & Ironing
- When possible, air dry your linens on a rack or using the “air setting” of your dryer. It is highly recommended that you remove your linen items when they are slightly damp, which helps with wrinkles and ironing.
- Linen does wrinkle easily so your linen items may require pressing. Slightly dampen your linen using a spray bottle of distilled water or liquid sizing. Use the cotton/linen setting of your iron and move in one direction to ensure not to rewrinkle a previously pressed area.
- Place linens in a dry, dark location such as a drawer or a box lined with acid free paper to prevent yellowing. If acid free paper is not available, do not use a plastic bag as that can cause mildew by trapping in moisture.
- Contrary to popular belief, linen does not require special protection from sunlight.
With the proper care, Belgian linen can last a life time. Indulge and enjoy the experience that comes from quality and superior craftsmanship. Shop our array of Belgian linen bedding, drapery and table coverings.
I just purchased the Belgian sheer rod pocket panels. No pleating, interfacing. Is it okay to wash them, would there be shrinkage? That would be okay because they are actually too long!
We would recommend you get them professionally cleaned as pressing them would be an ordeal because they will wrinkle and potentially warp from the spin cycle.
What do you recommend for Belgian linen upholstery? I have a couch covered in Belgian linen and it needs cleaning.