I decided to clean the accordion pleated blue curtains that came stock in my RV. Who knows how long since they had been cleaned? I’d long shied away from this task even after I’d spilled some nasty brown something on them. After all who could see them but me. It was the pleats that scared me. I don’t iron and if I do I’m more likely to burn and scorch than to produce a nice crisp looking result. I’d checked with my mom about this and it was she who said, yes, I could try to take them to the dry cleaner but they likely would not do them and if they did they would cost a bundle or might be damaged. Who knows what to expect from 20-year-old curtains?

RV Curtains

I have a project in mind for these curtains. I’m going to line them with Solarize Insulating Thermal Barrier Fabric  (the stuff’s not cheap but my goal is to keep the interior of my RV cooler for my dogs.) I saw this done on a video and it doesn’t look too hard. I don’t sew but I think I can glue them on with some fabric glue…. seems only right to clean them first.  I looked up dry cleaners that did sewing repairs but then I read comments from other RVers that had simply put them in the washing machine.  Well, okay.  I’m not brave enough to try that in the old machine here that chunks up holes my clothes. I decided to hand wash them. Here’s what I did:

  1.  Get the dogs out of the bathtub. My Lagotti Romagnoli are certain about many things in life, esp the puppies who were born here. They know that when I pull the shower curtain way back it’s time to jump in the bathtub and look cute. In they went. They were not happy when I scooted them out and closed the door. Definitely some nasty looks from Jeana.
  2. Lay the curtain with the horrible stains that had been heat setting for months very gingerly into the bathtub and wet the curtain thoroughly with cool water. Add a bit of,  All Fresh and & Sensitive Dye Free, gentle on the skin stainlifter detergent that had been sitting in my van for who knows how long into a cup with a little of my favorite stain fighter, Soilove in the green bottle and mix with cold water. Pour delicately onto the curtain and swish, swish……  it helps if you sing while you do it…. swish swish, away goes the dirt, in comes the suds, no $200 dry clean for me, for me ….   well, you can make up your own song.  I was expecting reams of dirt. Whenever I wash my dogs no matter how clean they look brown scuss floats into the water as I add soap; it’s kinda like they’re melting, the brown just runs off them. RV Curtains-Washing
  3. Rinse curtain and let drip from the shower rod and go get the next one out of the van.  I might add that I was congratulating myself at this point on how easy this was. Anyone could do this!
  4. Put curtain #2  in the tub and do the soak, soap and swish.
  5. Take #1 outside to see where I might hang it…  didn’t really find a place but, wait! Uh-oh!  What’s that! No!  Stains! I took a look at #2 and they both went plop plop back in the tub. My dogs were not even interested in the tub now.
  6. Add a ton more All Fresh and & Sensitive, Soilove and this time Dish Soap.
  7. Scrub the icky poo with nails and fingers.
  8. I left both curtains on the bottom of the tub sitting in soap to sit there and think about life.RV Curtains- 2ndWash
  9. After about 20 min, wondering why my hands were so so dry, I turned the shower on; then swish, rub  and rub and make like a mock washing machine agitation motion but not too hard.
  10. There was now a ton of suds so rinsing had to be done in stages. The plumbing is very old here and the drain is slow.
  11. Eventually I got the soap out. By this time the sun has set.  I started late because I’d waited until 4 pm when I could move my RV back in front of my house due to (irrational) parking requirements in my neighborhood..
  12. I hung them on big towels over the curtain bars in the shower.
  13. I will look at them later…   at least I can still see pleats….

Next Up…..  attaching the lining!