The holiday season is over, but the real fun has just begun. It's time to clean up after your festive dinner party or New Year’s Eve soiree. Some of our favorite indulgences during the holidays, such as red wine and chocolate, leave telltale stains if dropped on the floor. If you have carpet or rugs, use one of the following techniques to remove the ghosts of holiday’s past.
As soon as you notice the stain, pour club soda on it to dilute the red wine. Blot the club soda with a paper towel (do not rub). Rinse the club soda with cold water, gently blotting up the stain. If the stain is on the carpet, sprinkle the area with baking soda, and vacuum.
Scrape out dried candy chunks using a dull knife or spoon. First, try cold water to remove any stains. Using a spray bottle, apply the water in small amounts, then blot these up repeatedly using a white cotton cloth or plain white paper towels. If the stain is still there, mix a few drops of dish detergent with a few ounces of warm water, and apply this to the stain. Blot it gently, and then soak the detergent up with a paper towel. Repeat the process until the stain is gone.
Most cheese won’t stain if it’s picked up quickly. If it does stain, or sticks to the carpet, first scrape the cheese off the carpet with a dull knife. Mix a tablespoon of clear ammonia with about four ounces of water, and apply this to the spot with a spray bottle. This mixture will neutralize the acids. Blot up the moisture with a white paper towel, and repeat the process until there is no more transfer of the stain to the cloth.
Grab a towel, and mop up the spill as quickly as possible. Then, rinse the area with water using a spray bottle, and blot up the water between applications. Mix one tablespoon clear ammonia with one cup of water, and spray this on the spot using a spray bottle. This will neutralize odors and clean the stain. Do not soak the carpet so heavily that the solution reaches the carpet backing. After the solution has set on the spot for a few minutes, vacuum it up using a wet/dry vacuum.
Quickly, scrape off as much chocolate as you can with a dull knife. Be careful to not damage the carpet fibers. If the chocolate is soft, chill it with an ice cube or frozen package first. To dissolve the fat in the chocolate, use rubbing alcohol. Apply the rubbing alcohol to a white cloth, and lay the cloth over the stain. Press the cloth into the carpet with the back of a spoon. Once the area has been inundated with rubbing alcohol, remove the cloth. Now, mix one teaspoon of laundry detergent with one cup of warm water. Dampen the area with this solution. Blot (do not rub) the area dry.