Your jute bag is going to need a periodic clean. So, how can you wash the bag and make sure it retains its shape and the print remains vibrant?
Small products using untreated natural jute do not fare well in machine washing. Products like tote bags and zippered pouches should be handwashed to prevent loss of structure and shape.
- Fill a sink or basin with cold water. Make sure you do not use hot water as it may lead to the fabric’s shrinking
- Add a small amount of mild detergent. You should use a liquid variety to avoid deposits
- Leave the item in the basin for five minutes. Watch the fabric to make sure it does not fray or come apart
- Stir the material with your hands gently
- Rinse the item in the sink under running cold water, making sure you do not twist or squeeze the cloth;
- When you take the item out of the basin, make sure you do not wring it – it may cause damages to the structure, together with creases. You can gently haul the excess water.
STAIN REMOVAL - SPOT CLEANING:
Its best to remove stains BEFORE you wash your jute bag. You can use the process below to remove minor spots and stains.
- Use a wet sponge to blot the stain away (do not rub) and remove excess moisture with the help of a dry towel
- If you have to deal with difficult stains, you can use an oxygen-based stain remover. Gently test the product on the inside of the tote bag to see how the fabric behaves in the presence of the substance. If everything goes well, you can leave the oxy stain remover to do its job for a few minutes. Rinse off the excess substance with a wet towel and then handwash the item.
- Use a mixture of soda and water to remove stains. Apply a layer of paste made of baking soda and water on the stain and leave it a few minutes
Baking soda can be used to odors from your jute bags and other items.
- Fill a spray bottle with a mixture of water and baking soda
- Spray the item with the mix (make sure you do this outdoors) and leave the item to aerate for a few hours. Then turn it inside out and spray again. The best strategy is to remove odors and stains with baking soda when the outside air is warm, and the sun can dry the bag fast;
- In case you have some stubborn odors to deal with, treat the product with lemon juice (spray the fabric with lemon juice and leave the product outside in fresh air to dry). However, be careful to not use too much since acidic treatments risk damaging the fabric.
- Let the bag dry in fresh warm air to avoid the development of mildew; lay the product on a flat surface; you can also remove excess moisture by placing your bag in between two thick towels.
When it comes to using stain removers and other cleaning products make sure you read the products’ labels. If the manufacturer offered specific instructions on cleaning and maintenance, make sure you follow them!
We don't typically recommend machine washing your jute bags since the spin cycle can warp the bag and also cause shrinkage. However, if you do want to machine wash, make sure the print is color-fast (dab the area with a white cotton fabric soaked in water) and make sure you use cold water on a very gentle cycle. However, our recommendation is to not take that risk unless you are absolutely sure it will work.
Special thanks to Tote Bag Factory for these washing instructions