I get questions all the time about how I keep my white furniture and slipcovers clean…and yes, I have a husband, 3 kids, a dog and lots of guests and friends- so here are a few of my favorite tips for living with white:
1. Washable Throw Blankets and Towels– My number one tip for living with white slipcovers is using old white towels and throw blankets to help protect your covers from stains- especially in "high risk areas", such as my 4 year old's dining chair…
For everyday use, I keep an old white towel over the seat to help procect from spills and stains, when guests or company comes, or I am photographing, I simply remove the towel.
It is amazing how much this old towel has helped in keeping my slipcovers clean!
For my sofas, I like to use large, inexpensive throw blankets, and I always have several handy.
Not only are they great for keeping cozy while watching tv, but I can spread them out over the seat cushions if someone has dirty feet or just to protect the sofa from everyday wear and tear.
Here are a few other tips:
2. Wash your slipcovers! The best way to keep you white slipcovers looking great is to WASH them! I do this 2-3 times a year, usually the seat covers need it the most. I like to use almost pure white covers so I can bleach them…they always smell so fresh and clean when they come out. (Another tip is to be sure the fabric you use for your covers is "pre-washed and pre-shrunk" so you don't have shrinkage AFTER they are made.)
3. Set a few "house rules"– We have three simple "house rules" that keep my white slipcovers and painted furniture looking great- First, shoes come off at the front door and go in our shoe basket. Second- no food or drink outside the kitchen (exceptions are water and popcorn- these are pretty harmless) and Third- if you make a mess, you clean it up yourself! These rules have worked pretty well for us, in fact, most of the spills on my sofa slipcovers were made by adults- coffee and wine, etc… Go figure!
4. Learn to live with imperfections.- This tip is my ALL-TIME FAVORITE…I have overcome the fact that my house will be perfect, sure- I tidy up and put my best foot forward for blog photos and when we have company, but when it comes to daily life and everyday living- its OK if things are less than perfect. Each and every white slipcover in my home has a stain or a tear or something wrong with it, and that's ok. Each and every table, lamp, or accessory in my home has a scratch or chip on it. And that's ok. (I am probably the only one who notices all these imperfections anyway!)
Just like all the people in my life- none of us are perfect, and that's ok!
I hope this helps answer some of your questions about living with white slipcovers and furniture.