You wake up and make your morning coffee. You head to lounge at your usual spot on the velvet sofa. It feels comforting, lush, smooth, and, oh wait, is that a stain? Before you get too worried about that stain, know that it’s not the end of the world for you, or in this case, your velvet couch. Despite being categorized as a high-maintenance fabric, velvet can be easy to work with. You don’t need some fancy cleaning agent to remove the stains or maintain the velvety lustre of your sofa. You’ll likely need a cleaning solution and paper towels in most scenarios.

Stick around if you’re interested in knowing more about how to clean a velvet couch with tips from our expert London upholstery cleaning team.

The Making of Velvet


Let’s first understand the makings of velvet to know what we’re dealing with. The material initially starts as two pieces of fabric adjacent to each other. Then the textile choice is woven between them in a double cloth loom. The two fabrics are then cut from each other. Between them lies the pile that gives velvet the distinctively soft texture that makes you want to rub it on your face.

Initially, velvet used silk as its main textile, which is why it was synonymous with royalty. Now that it’s become more commercially available, manufacturers use various materials such as cotton, polyester, and more blends.

How to Clean Your Velvet Sofa

Now that you know how velvet is made, it’s easier to understand how dust particles and stains can get stuck within the pile. Here’s how you can safely clean your velvet couch without causing any damage to the plush fabric. In this instance, we’ll assume you have a stain or spill.

Step #1: Blot it Out

Resist the urge to rub the stain or spill. Instead, you want to get a handful of paper towels and gently blot the affected region. Remember, if you rub it, you’ll make things worse, and the stain will further deepen in the velvet fabric’s pile.

Step #2: Get a Cleaning Solution Ready

You don’t need to get fancy with the solution. You’ll probably need to get a bowl and mix in your regular dishwashing soap and a couple of cups of lukewarm water. Alternatively, you can use lemon juice and baking soda mix as well. Once you have a sudsy solution, don’t apply it immediately to the stained area. You’ll want to test it out by using it in a hidden area on your velvet sofa. If the solution changes the fabric’s colour, it’s best to stop. You should consider the type of velvet the couch is made of. If it’s silk, then it’s best to leave the solution-making to the professionals. Otherwise, cotton and polyester should be easier to deal with.

Step #3: Apply the Cleaning Solution

After you’ve done the patch test and it looks unchanged, apply the solution with a cloth. First, tap the stained region carefully. Then, you can rub the cleaning solution in the crevices where the stain has settled. Before you go in with your damp cloth, squeeze out any excess water. You don’t want the couch completely wet, only a little damp to let the soap do its job.

Step #4: Leave the Velvet Sofa to Air Dry

If you’re satisfied with the results, you can leave it to air dry. To speed up the process, you can keep your fans and windows on to allow more air in the room. Try to keep anyone from sitting on the velvet sofa until it fully dries, so it doesn’t crease too much when damp. This step should take around 30 to 60 minutes, depending on how wet the sofa is.

Step #5: Brush the Velvet Couch

It should now feel dry to the touch. It might look messy from all the rubbing, so you’ll want to get a soft-bristled brush to touch it up. If you still see the stain after brushing the area, you might want to repeat the steps once more to obliterate the stain. On the other hand, you can also contact a professional to clean the stain if it’s too stubborn.

How to Care for Your Velvet Sofa

Velvet couch

Stains and spills are mere spot-checks on your velvet sofa. Now you need to look at the remainder of the sofa. When the light shines on it, you might see some dust collecting on the seams of the velvet fabric. Where you keep your sofa also matters. To avoid any colour fading, you should try to place it in a shaded area, so the sun doesn’t reach it. That being said, here are a couple of methods to care for and maintain your velvet sofa.

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Method #1: Steam the Velvet Sofa

Steam cleaning unwinds wrinkles from most fabrics, including velvet. You can use a fabric steamer on your velvet sofa to keep it well-groomed when using it, the steam opposite of where the pile rests and keep the setting on low heat. This will help in avoiding any permanent blemish on the couch. You should also try not to hover the steamer in one place for too long.

Method #2: Vacuum the Velvet Sofa

As you vacuum your living room, you might also want to think of vacuuming your velvet sofa. Before you begin, get a soft-bristled brush and lift the pillows to brush away any fallen crumbs or quarters left in the couch’s nooks and crannies. Then use a brush vacuum attachment to clean the velvet upholstery. To keep the pattern organized, settle on either horizontal or vertical stripes.

To Conclude

Cleaning and caring after your velvet sofa will yield rewarding results. These kinds of sofas amp up the elegance in the room without even trying. Luckily, caring for them is not too difficult. All you have to do is have some paper towels on hand, soap, and a brush vacuum attachment. In the meantime, try to keep the food and drinks at the dining table or invest in a convenient table tray to avoid any accidental spills and crumbs.