To make your upholstery fabric stain resistant, get it fibre sealed.
For upholstery on dining room chairs and other highly used furniture, use touch fabric so that it is easy to clean and maintain them.
Keep switching cushions on your furniture so that only some don't suffer frequent wear.
Use the upholstery attachment to vacuum soft furnishings on a weekly basis.
Upholstered cushions should be plumped up regularly to keep them looking good.
Once a month, take cushions outside and beat them by hand. This will help prevent dust from settling into the fibres. When replacing cushions, rotate and flip them as you would a mattress to ensure even wear.
Cleaning products for different kinds of upholstery fabric should be used only on the advice of the manufacturer. This is because while some fabrics require water-based cleaning solutions, others can be cleaned using solvent-based solutions.
Regularly vacuum upholstered furniture and drapes to keep them looking clean and free from dust.
Once in a while get your rich upholstery fabrics cleaned with the right cleaning treatment by a professional upholstery cleaner.
For accidental spills, blot the spot immediately. Do not use soap water to clean it as this may cause the stain to spread deeper and cause lasting damage to the upholstery fabric. Be careful if ou have upholstered your furniture in white or other light-colored upholstery fabric. Dark colored clothes can leave stains on them if they are wet or even otherwise.
The first rule of tending to a spill? Get to it quickly before it has time to set. Use a blotting motion with either a paper towel or clean white cloth. Rubbing can smudge the spill into a larger stain - an effect that upholstery cleaning pros call "blossoming". Work from the outside of the spot towards the centre. Blot dry.
If blotting hasn't done the trick and a cleaning solution is required, take a moment to examine the manufacturer's care label, usually located under the chair seat or inside a cushion cover. Here, you'll find instructions as to which types of products can be used in the cleaning of the fabric: W for water-based cleaners, S for solvents, WS for either, and X for none of the above - in which case, vacuuming is your only option. Note that many grease or oil-based stains (gravy, butter, cosmetics) are only treatable with dry cleaning solvents.
Before applying a cleaning solution of any kind, it's a good idea to test the colourfastness of the fabric on an inconspicuous patch of the furnishing. Apply the solution to a clean white cloth, and press against the test area firmly for 30 seconds. Examine the cloth for evidence of colour transfer.
Whether spot cleaning with a pH-balanced (neutral) detergent in a 1:20 water mixture or a commercial dry cleaning solution, where appropriate, finish by blotting with clean water.
Never overwet the fabric. Applying too much water or cleaning solution can spread the stain and saturate the padding underneath the upholstery, creating the perfect haven for mould, mildew and bacteria - all of which are far worse than a surface stain. Don't try to speed up the drying time with a hot-air dryer either, heat merely sets the stain. Instead, merely blot the area dry.