How to Care for Velvet Furniture

Chic mid-century modern luxury aesthetics living room with gray velvet couch and blue rug

Velvet furniture has long been used as an elegant accent to enhance any room. You likely have a Pinterest board (or four!) with different styles and colors saved for your future plans. 

Whether you’re lucky enough to already have gotten your hands on some, or you’re looking to add it to your space, you’re going to need to know how to care for velvet furniture. 

Is It Velvet?

Is your furniture velvet or suede? 

The two materials are commonly mistaken for each other, so it’s important to know which you have. You should make sure before attempting any sort of cleaning as suede requires much different care.

[Related: 5 Things to Do When Cleaning Fabric Furniture]

Types of Velvet

There are four types of velvet:

  • Crushed velvet: Despite the name, the material isn’t actually crushed. Instead, “crushed” refers to how the velvet looks. 
  • Silk velvet: This is considered the highest quality of velvet. It’s luxurious to the touch and the softest of all velvet types. 
  • Velour: Velour is a dense velvet that’s typically found in clothing. It’s both durable and comfortable. 
  • Velveteen: A short-cut pile similar to velvet, velveteen achieves the same feeling of velvet with less body. 

Thrifted Velvet

You’ve likely noticed the resurgence of velvet furniture in recent styling trends, both new and not-so-new. From midcentury modern to bohemian interiors, you’re sure to find a plush velvet piece that fits your style.  

If you’re in the mood to do a bit of hunting, we know of a few fantastic Seattle antique shops where you can try your luck. 

[Related: How to Care for Antique Furniture Before and After Restoration]

Velvet Durability

Some types of velvet are more durable than others. However, velvet remains quite a practical fabric for everyday living compared to other fabrics. 

Of course, there are some core variables you should consider. Don’t worry — we share what you need to know below.

Velvet vs. Pets

For plush pups and extra furry friends, synthetic velvet is a fantastic choice. Synthetic velvet is a more durable option and is typically pretreated to be stain-resistant and easy to clean. 

Velvet vs. Spills

Liquids, and tonics, and beverages — oh my! 

Luckily, spills are typically easy to treat with velvet furniture care. We get into a bit more detail below, but as long as your spill hasn’t dried, the cleanup is practically painless. 

Velvet vs. Kids

Slippy sippy cups and other child-sized disasters are a formidable foe. 

But we have good news! Similar to the spills mentioned above, cleanup from kid-created messes is easy. And as for cushion forts, you’re in the clear. 

Keep reading for more on general velvet furniture care and our velvet furniture care instructions. 

Velvet Furniture Care Tips

General Care for Velvet Furniture

With such an alluring fabric, you’re sure to notice signs of wear. Keep your eyes peeled for:

  • Crushing: This happens when the fabric is compressed or “crushed” by everyday use. To slow down the inevitable, simply vacuum regularly with an upholstery attachment or use a soft-bristled brush. 
  • Dents: Velvet is prone to dents. When caring for your velvet fabric, be sure not to leave anything too heavy resting on it for too long. Some pressure marks can be removed with light steam and brushing. 
  • Creases and wrinkles: You’ll start to notice this on high-use cushions or pillows. You can fluff and rotate regularly to avoid wearing them out too quickly. 
  • Color fading: This can be a bit trickier as the cause is simply light. Whether from the sun or an indoor bulb, velvet can be sensitive to light. It is best to place velvet furniture out of direct light. Or, if you’re blessed with loads of natural lighting, place a throw over the sun-exposed spots for a little added protection.

Velvet Furniture Care Instructions

Accidents happen. Be ready with this quick list of velvet furniture care instructions:

  1. Know your material: As we briefly mentioned, there are several types of velvet, from the delicate crème de la crème silk velvet to the more durable and dense velour. Make sure you are being gentle enough depending on your type of velvet furniture. 
  2. No rubbing: Friction can damage the pile and the overall appearance of your velvet furniture. It’s important to blot or dab any spill that may occur with a dry cloth. To prevent any markings from the spill, use a hairdryer at a safe distance on cool until no longer damp. Finish by brushing the now dry area to prevent matting or napping. 
  3. Consider using cleaners: If all else fails, you can always turn to a cleaner or solvent. However, you’ll want to test on a discreet area of the furniture first in the event that things do not go as planned. 

We’re Here for You

Velvet or not, there are a number of factors to consider when choosing new furniture for your home. Lucky for you, we have our guide to purchasing furniture. Now you may be wondering, is my furniture worth refinishing? You’ve got a few options to consider. 

Restoring Velvet

Check out another one of our blogs for ideas on how to give new life to an old couch. 

Reupholstering Velvet

Reupholstery is another option. Visit our site to get an estimate

If reupholstery doesn’t sound like the right choice for your velvet furniture care, it might be time for an upgrade altogether. We discuss parting with your well-loved furniture in another blog about how long your furniture should last. 

Contact Queen Anne Upholstery & Refinishing Today!

If any of this feels a bit beyond you, don’t worry — you can always call on a professional. Here at Queen Anne Upholstery & Refinishing, we just might know someone who’s perfect for the job. We offer custom restoration for your specific furniture needs. 

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