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This beautiful 1930’s Rose Applique quilt belongs to my friend Julie.

The quilt had been badly soiled before it came into Julie’s possession. I convinced her that cleaning it up a bit would add to the quilt’s value. It never occured to me that pink dye would run.

Julie just soaked the quilt in cold water and dryed it. The resulting big pink blotches on the white fabric were an awful surprise. I brought the quilt home and tried everything in my bag of tricks to get the pink dye out, but nothing worked.

First, I washed it in synthrapol and cold water. This made no difference at all.

Then, I applied the synthrapol directly to the spots using a small sponge and soaked the quilt in cold water over night. This helped a little, but not enough to repeat the process in hopes of getting out more dye.

Then, I made a paste of “Oxy-Clean” and lemon juice and applied to directly to the spots. I let that set for about an hour and then soaked the whole quilt over night again in cold water. This helped some, but not enough to risk damaging the fabric any further by trying again.

I really wish I had kept my mouth shut.

I did not take any ‘before’ shots. Here are some closeups of a few of the pink spots taken this morning. There are still several spots all over the front of the quilt.

Does anyone have any suggestions? I am concerned that any further treatments could damage the fabrics. They are over 80 years old.

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