Preserving Keepsakes

Old, faded lace runner keepsake on wood table top

Remember those lace runners that your grandmother always kept on the end tables in her living room? They were always there, even after she moved. It seems like all the memories you have of playing at her house as a child involve those old lace runners.

Or what about your grandpa’s handkerchief? He always had it with him, even though he didn’t use it for much. There were a few times he used it to wipe away your tears and he used it when he had to cough. He even used it for a magic trick once. It just seemed to be a part of him.

And your mother’s dish towels? Remember those? They had the funny looking characters embroidered on the bottom. They were passed down from generation to generation, but not just for looks. Each had stains from wiped up food and dried dishes of the past.

No matter what they are, the keepsakes we cherish that have been passed down from loved ones hold a lot of value, even if it’s not always monetary. If you’ve received dear keepsakes that you want to restore or keep safe, here’s what you can do:

  1. Clean them. If you’re dealing with cloth, linen, or fabrics, chances are that they’ve yellowed over use and time. We’ve designed Retro Clean specifically to remove stains and yellowing on old and delicate fabrics. If you plan to use your keepsakes regularly, we also offer Retro Wash, designed to preserve and get delicates clean, even after everyday use.
  1. Store them. Once your keepsakes have been cleaned, wrap the cloths in special preserving paper. If your keepsakes are paper or photos themselves, they don’t necessarily need to be wrapped. After they’re set to be stored, place them in a special box. Do not use a cardboard or wood box as acid from the wood will seep through and discolor them; special “microclimate” boxes can be ordered online. Once they’ve been safely boxed, store your keepsakes in a cool, dark, dry place.
  1. Or display them. If you’re not planning on boxing up your hand-me-down treasures and want to display them for everyone to see, find a display place that is away from direct sunlight. If you’ll be framing your keepsakes, be sure to use UV resistant glass for an added measure of protection.

No matter what keepsake you want to preserve, protect your valuables for generations to come. For your cloths and linens, order Retro Clean and Retro Wash today, or contact us with any questions you may have.

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