I thought I take the opportunity to share how I wash and dry my quilts as I am often asked about this.
First at all, my quilts are for use and hence should withstand washing in the machine on a gentle cycle. I have found people are really reluctant to put quilts in the washing machine. I have learned very quickly that the more quilted a piece is, the better it washes and the distortion is fairly minimal and a gentle cycle should do it no harm.
Now for the soiled table runner...I did not put it in the washing machine as it needed to be rinsed straight away. I used cold water...experience has taught me that cold water is the way to go to avoid stains. Coffee came out straight away and no stain was left, so I put a bit of washing detergent in to wash it a bit....yes, the red fabric started to bleed a bit (and I am pretty sure I washed this fabric beforehand!), so I put a colour catcher into the water to avoid a major disaster. As it continued to run ever so slightly, I used vinegar in the end to made the dye more stable and that did the trick.
After rinsing a number of times (all in cold water), I rolled the runner up like you would do with woollen clothing and gently squeezed out the excess water. Then I put it outside on the clothes hanger and gently stretched it into its normal rectangular shape and let it sit there for the rest of the day and night. I only put it on the washing line once it was almost dry for the wind to go through, so that there was no distortion. Came out absolutely brilliant.
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