Need help with stored clothing odors : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) Preparation Forum : One Thread

Today I bought a lot of material, mostly cotton, that has been stored for more than ten years in a chest in a garage. It was in better shape than I expected, but boy does it stink. I just washed the first load, and after two rinses it still stinks. What can I do to remove the odor?

-- Pearlie Sweetcake (, July 08, 1999


Try putting about a cup of vinegar in the rinse water. I have had excellent results from the new fabric sprays on the market now. Fabreez for one.

-- Carol (, July 08, 1999.

I am usually reluctent to endore new products! But Fabreeze is a life definitely something I will stock up on for into the next century because I hate housework in general and am always looking for shortcuts. It is especially handy for heavy sweaters that you don't want to wash after each wearing. Just hang them on the shower rod, give 'em a good light spraying all over, let dry, store them away and they come out freash the next time you wear them. They say to test for color fading, but I haven't had any trouble, but on some reds that run badly I use on the enterior of the garmet.

-- Lilly (, July 08, 1999.

Store it with Bounce sheets in between. I have them in my drawers, linen closet, etc. Taz

-- Taz (Tassie, July 09, 1999.


I have heard that if you put a vanilla bean in with the fabric when you store it that it will take some of the odor out, but then the fabric will have a wonderful vanilla smell to it.

You might want to put cedar balls in with it, as it will keep the moths and most other bugs out, and provide that clean cedar scent as well.

Not sure if true or not, but I heard that if you put a couple of drops of the vanilla extract in with paint that the paint will not have that wet paint smell as it dries.

-- (cannot-say@this.time), July 09, 1999.

I've been using Arm & Hammer's Washing Soda along with laundry detergent -- less detergent is needed. It seems to help take out odors. At any rate the clean wet wash smells like my mother's used to (she used bluing, whatever that is.)

-- Tom Carey (, July 09, 1999.

Blueing is sill avaialble..Aunt Lydia's Blueing is sold in most supermarkets. It is used for whites as it gives a slight blue tinge to the whites to make them whiter looking. We use to use this blueing on charcoal to make crystals. I fogot the exact directions, but with food coloring, the cyrstals were facinating to watch grow. I will look on the bottle ff the blueing in the store and see if the directions for making the crystals are there. Kids would love doing this. I had forgotten all about it until you mentioned blueing.

-- Carol (, July 09, 1999.

I've been putting 9 to 12 ounces of vinegar in the rinse water when I wash the old cloth, and after a trip through the dryer it is nearly odor free. Some of the material is old flour sacks, with the paper labels still attached. I haven't yet washed the ones with labels. Maybe they will have some nostalgia value (for someone with no sense of smell).

-- Pearlie Sweetcake (, July 09, 1999.

Carol, I heard something about that crystal-growing trick a long long time ago. Let us know what you find out.... I have some grandchildren who watch way too much TV.

-- Tom Carey (, July 09, 1999.

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