So you had a nice candlelit dinner at your home, or perhaps the power went out, and you needed some light for the evening, and the hot wax from your candles dripped onto your tablecloth. This does not mark the end of your tablecloth’s use. By following these steps, you can remove the wax from your tablecloth, although if the fabric is very delicate or antique, you may want to consider taking the job to a professional.
- Wait for the wax to cool and harden before you try to get rid of it. Never wipe it when it is still hot, as this will make a huge mess.
- You can leave the tablecloth in the freezer for a couple days to harden the wax and remove any moisture. This will make it easier to scrape off.
- Grab a spoon and carefully scrape off as much wax as possible, and shake off any loose pieces. Be careful not to damage the fabric.
- Take a brown paper bag and cut out multiple pieces that are about twice as large as the spot of wax. Cover your ironing board with a rag to protect your ironing board from getting wax on it, then place the tablecloth on the board. Put a piece of brown paper under the spot on the tablecloth and another on top and press with a medium-warm iron. This heat will be warm enough to melt the wax but not so hot that it will burn the fabric. Run the iron over the paper until an oily spot appears, then switch the paper and repeat until the oil fails to appear.
- Pretreat the fabric by rubbing bar soap like Ivory into the spot with a stiff brush, but still, be careful not to hurt the fabric. If the wax is colored, you can remove the dye with some hydrogen peroxide or oxygen bleach. However, if you try this, be sure to test the peroxide or bleach in an inconspicuous place on the tablecloth.
- Run the tablecloth through your washing machine using the hottest water setting available. Then let it air dry and check to see if the spot is still there. You can continue to repeat the process until the spot is gone, and don’t put your tablecloth into the dryer until it is. The heat from the dryer will set the spot and make it impossible to remove.
Putting the tablecloth in the freezer is another way to get rid of small amounts of wax. When the wax gets hard, take off the tablecloth and break off most of it. To get the rest of the wax off the tablecloth, place the stained area over a large bowl and secure it with rubber bands. Then, pour boiling water over the wax to melt it. After that, wash the tablecloth like you normally would.