Have you ever bought something and then realised the error of your ways? We invested in some really good quality cream sofas about 10 years ago and then the kids came along. We learned the hard way that cream sofas and kids don’t mix! Our lovely sofas gradually turned from cream to a filthy grey colour (this was mainly due to them wiping sticky hands, half eaten apples and runny noses on them). I took the covers off and got them dry cleaned a couple of times but it was really difficult to get the covers back on afterwards and they never looked that great either.
We gave up after a while and they got greyer and greyer. When friends came round they laughed at our sofas and we had periodic conversations about re-covering them or getting them professionally cleaned. Re-covering would have been quite an expensive option and cleaning would work out much cheaper – if it worked, which we really weren’t convinced about. We kept deciding it wasn’t worth doing anything about them until the kids got a bit older.
They are a bit older now and most of the time we manage to convince them to wash their hands before they go anywhere near them (yes the sofas were filthy, but we were training them in case they went near other people’s sofas or in case our sofas were clean one day). So just before Christmas my husband came to the decision that now was the time to try getting them cleaned. They were looking particularly bad and we were having all the family over on Christmas day. Plus we want to have the option to rent out our house when we are away (for a weekend or a holiday) and we really couldn’t do that with our sofas looking like that.
Mr ETL found a company that would do a test patch for £30 and then if we went ahead and got them cleaned they would deduct the £30 from the final cost. We got the test patch done and had a nice big clean patch in an otherwise filthy sofa. The clean patch convinced us to go the whole hog and then they were too busy to come back again to do the rest of it until after Christmas – oh well you can’t have everything :). Now however, the sofas look amazing! In fact they look a bit like a teeth whitening advert (you know when the teeth are all white and shiny, except in this case they are sofas and cream coloured – I know what I mean 🙂 ). We did notice that there were a
few patches that didn’t get picked up the first time round (it can be hard to
see how clean they are until fully dried), but they came back and went over them again and they got most of them. There were a few bits they just couldn’t do anything about, but overall they look a million times better than they did!
I just assumed that the cleaning solution wouldn’t be particularly eco-friendly and was going to deal with it in return for reviving the sofas, but that was where I was wrong – I totally underestimated my husbands powers of research! It turns out that the product they use to clean the sofas is completely non-toxic and fragrance free. Natural Carpet care is run by a father – Spencer Davies (pictured with me above) and his two sons – take a look at their website here. I discovered that Spencer is really into being eco-friendly – he’s a vegetarian, only drinks out of glass bottles and was really keen to try out this non-toxic cleaning product as soon as he heard about it. As you can imagine we had a long chat – it was really nice to meet a local businessman who cares about the environment!
Spencer took a bit of footage of the sofas being cleaned so you can see for yourself how disgusting they were and how much cleaner they became.
We also took photos of one of the sofas – it was really awful, but thankfully looks much better now!
The sofa cleaning cost us £175 in total which I managed to negotiate a bit off when I mentioned that I write a blog and started haggling with him – everyone loves a bit of haggling don’t they ;). He even very kindly said I could write an article about my blog for his site – so keep your eyes peeled on the news section of their website! If we had re-covered the sofas it would have been a lot more expensive – maybe about £1000 or more depending on the type of fabric we wanted and actually I now realise there was nothing wrong with the fabric we had – it just needed a bit of a clean!
All I need to do next is to take pictures of my home containing these lovely clean sofas (for when we want to rent it out) before any sticky hands accidentally go near them.
So before you think your sofas, carpets or rugs have had it try getting them cleaned and if you aren’t local take the time to find someone who uses a non-toxic product!
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