thumb_19926_CCHMjpgFrom dresses to head gear, the incorporation of crystal embellishments within a fabric can really make an outfit stand out from the crowd at a social gathering or formal occasion. However, if you have spent hours creating stunning garments that are adorned with these types of lavish embellishments then the last thing you will want is for your prized pieces to lose their shine in the wash!

So if you’ve been looking for ways to avoid any machine washing or tumble drying mishaps, then here are our top Empire Textiles tips on how to wash West African textiles that feature crystal embellishments:



Always hand-wash garments with crystal embellishments


thumb_20081_AQTjpgAlthough the labels on many fabrics that feature embellishments will state that they can be machine washed if the garments are turned inside out, this will be no guarantee that the crystals and rhinestones embedded in the fabric will not crack, tarnish or fall off during the wash. As such, we strongly recommend that you wash these types of garments by hand.

For instance, if you have made a dress out of one of the wax print fabrics in our Mitex Holland with Stones collection, we recommend that you turn the garment inside out and use warm water with a small amount of mild detergent to clean it. This process will prevent any of these crystal stones incorporated within the fabric from becoming cracked or damaged in any way.

As a rule, we advise against soaking embellished clothing in warm water for more than a few minutes because you run the risk of loosening the adhesive which is holding the crystals, rhinestones, or other forms of embellishments in place.



Apply stain remover with a toothbrush!


thumb_18285_CGDtIf there is a stain on the fabric then you should avoid using abrasive cleaning tools and instead apply your stain remover with a toothbrush. What’s more, if you ensure that the stain remover solution is kept well away from the stones on your fabric then you can prevent the adhesive keeping your prized crystals in place from becoming weakened in any way.



Air dry embellished fabrics rather than using a tumble dryer


main_20089_GDMjpgAfter washing your garments, always hang them to air dry rather than use a tumble dryer. Areas where your garments will be in direct sunlight but not too hot are preferable because, once again, prolonged exposure to high temperatures can weaken any adhesives keeping the crystals in place. Although this process takes longer and requires more effort than machine washing and tumble drying, it will ensure that your embellished garments retain their show-stopping impact for many years to come!