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Candle Wax

Candle Wax: the Bane of Fine Table Linens

candlesSo you are planning a nice romantic dinner for Valentine’s Day, complete with soft lighting from burning candles. Be sure you protect your table linens from the overly zealous marketing claims made by ‘dripless’ candle makers by using candle drip
 protectors (you can even get them on line.)

If however, you forget and your lovely tablecloth bears witness to your oversight, your best bet in saving the table linen for future dinners is to bring it in to us quickly for stain removal, cleaning and professional pressing. But – if you have time on your hands, an adventurous spirit and promise to be VERY, VERY careful go here for a DIY (do-it-yourself) technique you might want to try.

You’ll need:

  • Lighter fluid or mineral spirits
  • Petroleum jelly
  • Clean, white, unbleached towel,
  • Gauze pads
  • Stainless steel spoon
  • Large flat Formica or stone slab surface to work on



  • Place the towel under the stained area and smooth out the cloth
  • Apply the lighter fluid or mineral spirit to a gauze pad and dab it on the stain
  • Apply some petroleum jelly to the stain
  • Let mixture stand for 30 seconds in order to give the petroleum jelly time to soften the stain and the solvent time to dissolve the wax
  • Carefully scrape off the mixture with the edge of the bowl of the spoon. DO NOT use a dinner knife to scrape the mixture off, as it will likely abrade the fine fibers. This is permanent and irreparable damage.
  • Repeat as often as necessary until stain removed. Be sure to move stain to a clean area of towel.
  • Flush the area with lighter fluid or mineral spirits.
  • Dab with towel
  • Air dry
  • Launder
  • Re-inspect cloth to ensure stain is removed.

CAVEAT:  Do not place linen in the dryer or iron until the stain has been successfully removed.  If you’ve been unsuccessful you can still bring it in to us, as long as you have not subjected it to any heat.