So, what does that mean for those of us trying to declutter or simplify? It means that it is time to pull back those curtains, throw open the windows and let in the fresh air! Out with the old, stale air!
It's also a good time to take down curtains and have them cleaned. And, to wash down windows so we can see the world around us once again. Clean curtains and other window coverings can collect dust and dirt just like any other object in our homes. And in homes like mine, pet dander and hair collects on them just the same.
To clean curtains, you first need to check labels. Some fabrics require dry cleaning, like silks and woolens. However, a lot of fabrics used today are washable. If you are unsure about whether they are machine washable or not, do a spot test with water and detergent first. Machine wash with a small amount of detergent in cold water, then line dry. Iron if needed. Of course, if you are like me and live where you cannot line dry, I've hung my curtains over shower curtain rods in the bathroom to hang dry.
For lace curtains or sheers, hand wash in a small amount of detergent and cold water. Gently wring the water and line dry. If you have a chance, allowing them to dry in direct sunlight helps brighten them naturally.
A quick word to detergent: I love using Tide with Febreeze lavender scent.
For blinds, check with the manufacturer on how to clean. Usually just dusting regularly will keep them neat and clean, but sometimes they'll need a deeper cleaning. Fabric blinds will require professional dry cleaning. For most standard blinds, soaking them in water and dish soap in your bathtub will help clean them up in a jiffy. Simple green works as well.
For windows, I've found that cleaning them with a vinegar-water solution and old newsprint works best. Especially when having to clean puppy nose prints or child hand prints off glass. To help prevent streaking, consider using a window squeegy, just like professional window washers.
Now, be careful when taking down and rehanging your window coverings. The fabrics do breakdown over time and can easily tear. So take care when sliding them off and on curtain rods and other window hardware.
Once you are done, you will be able to breath in the fresh spring air with ease! And, let the sunshine in!