Cloth placemats are used throughout the year and are available in traditional, contemporary and seasonal designs. Over time these items become soiled with food or other debris and need to be cleaned. Due to the sensitive materials these placemats are manufactured from, cleaning a dirty cloth placement should be done by hand and not in a washing machine.
Remove food debris from the placemat with your fingers or use a butter knife to scrape off dried-on debris. Make sure to carefully pick away the food as to not damage the integrity of the cloth fibers.
Fill a small container with 2 cups of hot, not boiling, water, and fill a large container with 5 cups of cool water. Pour 2 tbsp. of liquid detergent into the hot water bowl. Add 2 drops of tea tree oil into the cool water container.
Spread a layer of paper towels onto a flat surface, then rest the placemats on top of the paper towels.
Dip a soft-bristed toothbrush into the hot water bowl. Gently brush away stains or caked-on food using a circular motion. Re-dip the toothbrush into the cleaning solution periodically to help remove tough stains. Continue until you've treated all the placemats.
Submerge each placemat one at a time into the cool water container after hand-scrubbing the cloth. Allow the placemats to rest in the container for 10 minutes.
Remove the placemats from the cool water container, and place back onto the paper towels. Rinse residual soap from the cloth by turning on your kitchen water facet and holding the placemat underneath the water flow. Move the placement in circles while rinsing to aid the soap removal process. Place the rinsed placemat back onto the paper towels and continue until all placemats are rinsed.
Dry the placemats by placing a bath towel onto a flat surface. Put the placemat onto the towel and roll the towel and placemat together, squeezing while you roll. This will help extract excess moisture from the cloth. Continue with each placemat.
Hang the placemats on a clothing rack, or lay out dry paper towels on a flat surface and put the placemats on the towels. Allow the placemats to dry overnight.