Removing Watercolor Stains
By Steve Gillman
If you have children or you are an artist yourself, removing
watercolor paints from carpet is probably going to be a necessity
at some point. The instructions that follow will walk you through
the process of removing these stains.
If you can catch the spill quickly the potential for getting
out all of the paint is much greater. Immediately blot up the
liquid with towels or paper towels before it spread too far or
soaks in too deeply. It is best to use plain white cotton or
paper towels that do not have added color, but grab anything
else if that's quicker.
Once you have soaked up the worst of it, or if you are removing
old watercolor stains, make a cleaning solution of water and
clear ammonia. About three ounces of ammonia to six ounces of
water should be enough for most spills and stains. Apply this
with a spray bottle if one is available, or by carefully sprinkling
it over the spot and working it in gently using your fingers
(wear latex gloves). After a moment or so, blot it up with paper
towels or white cotton rags.
Repeat this until the solution is used up. If you still see
watercolor transferring to the rag mix up another batch and continue
like this. Once there is no more transfer you have removed most
of what you can. Now you need to remove the ammonia. For this
use a solution of a few drops of dish detergent in a cup of warm
water. Use plain dish washing detergents that are not too fragrant.
Apply and blot it up several times.
Water can be used for the final clean and rinse. sprinkle
or spray it on the spot and blot it up. If any water color stains
still remain you can try the whole procedure again, After two
times though, you are not likely to get any more out (although
a professional carpet cleaner might do better).
Dry the area with weighted stacks of paper towels or cotton
rags. Finish the drying using a fan, which should blow on the
spot for a few hours.