Party StainsI'm one of those people who would rather go to a party at someone else's place than host one myself. All of the fun with none of the work? Yes, please.
Occasionally, though, I do suck it up and throw a get-together. And when I do, someone inevitably spills, cracks, or shatters something (and oftentimes, I have to admit, that person is me). Fortunately, with a few tricks up your sleeve, these party fouls don't have to turn into disasters. Here's how to solve even the most stubborn messes.
1. Red Wine on Your CouchSupplies
- Paper towels
- Clean white towel
- White wine
- Club soda (maybe)
There is hope, but you've got to snap into action fast-couch fibers absorb liquids quickly and the longer the stain soaks in, the worse your chances at removing it. Start by blotting the stain with clean, dry paper towels, taking care to gather up all excess liquid. Next-in a step that sounds sort of like a party trick-pour a little bit of white wine onto the stain. I know, I know-so much precious wine wasted on a couch where no wine should be. But white wine is surprisingly good at removing red wine stains. Grab a clean white towel and blot at the stain, then watch breathlessly as it disappears. Repeat the process as many times as necessary, using club soda if you run out of wine. (Isn't it handy that so many of the contents of your liquor cabinet double as cleaning aids?)
2. Glass Rings on Your Wood TableSupplies
- Wax paper
- Clean towel
If you can, ignore the unsightly circular stain for now-the removal method is just as effective on old stains, so it can wait until after tomorrow morning's hangover brunch. Cut out a square of wax paper large enough to cover entire stain. Put it over the ring and then lay the towel on top. Iron the towel over the stain on medium heat (don't steam!), making sure not to let the iron sit too long in one place. Lift up the towel and wax paper every 30 seconds or so to check your progress. Keep working on it until the stain is removed.
Disclaimer: I've only ever tried this on wood, so if your table is made of something else, do a little internet research before pulling out your iron.
3. Candle Wax on Your CarpetSupplies
- Dull knife
- Paper bag
Once the wax has hardened, take a dull knife and gently scrape away all the excess wax you can. Then, cover whatever remains with a paper bag and, with your iron on medium heat, gently press the bag. The remaining wax will be transferred off your carpet and on to the paper bag. Magic!
4. Broken Glass on Your FloorSupplies
- Paper grocery bag
- Sliced bread
But if there is a crash, clear the area immediately. Sweep up as best as you can, throwing away the shards in a paper grocery bag. And resist the urge to use your vacuum with this mess-the glass can damage it. Then, you know the saying that nothing is better than sliced bread? Normally I disagree (don't even try to tell me that Nutella isn't better than sliced bread), but when it comes to picking up glass, bread really is the best. A soft (not stale) piece of bread pressed onto the floor will effectively gather up all those tiny glass shards that eluded the dustpan. (You'll probably need four or five slices to clean it up completely.)
Once a piece of bread becomes saturated with glass, throw it out immediately-you don't want any hungry guests taking a big bite of a glass-shard sandwich.
Parties are about fun, not cleaning, so take any messes that occur in stride. It's your party-so you're certainly entitled to cry if you want to, but save your tears for something more important than a spill or stain.
This article was originally published on The Daily Muse. For more from our "Dealing Domestically" column, check out:
The Busy Girl's Guide to Having Houseguests
Revamp Your Kitchen for $200 (or Less!)
The Busy Girl's Guide to Not Living in a Pig Sty
Laura Drucker grew up in Chicago, Illinois and currently lives in Miami, Florida with her boyfriend and their awesome puppy. She is a proud law school dropout, and the editor of Tails Pet Media Group, Inc.