Colour run stain on embroidered Kazakh wall hanging

by Anna
(London, UK)

We bought a beautiful wall hanging while travelling in Central Asia. It has coloured embroidery on a black fabric background. The wall-hanging got a bit wet and the black colour of the background fabric ran into the coloured embroidery in a small area. I do not want to wash the whole thing as I am worried that the black of the background fabric will run again, so I think I need to remove the black dye from the embroidery by carefully dabbing it with some kind of liquid that does not need to be rinsed out - Do you have any advice?
Many thanks, Anna

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by: Anonymous

So I have almost the same problem my teacher gave us cotton fabric for the embroidery project. So while I was stiching it the fabric got dirty so I washed it with laudry soap. NOW I MADE IT WORSE AND THE LIME GREEN IS ALL OVER THE FABRIC !!!! and worst of all I need to hand this in on Wednesday! HELP!!!! and if I add more water I think it will go worse any one have any ideas ?!?!? I could REALLY USE THEM !

be careful
by: Anonymous

i don't know how long ago the question was posted, but in case the owner of the embroidery is still needing help with the dye running on her asian chainstitch hanging...i think that she should not do anything.

There is no way to prevent more black to run - the background is probably not black, anyway, but darkest green, and if the substance of the hanging is felted, which many central asian "tapestries" and rugs are, water will make the fibers seize up and you'll have a puckered area that nothing can repair.

if the hanging were mine, I'd think about several approaches -

1, I'd try to match the colors, i'd practice making the stitches (which are probably tambour, not chainstitch, which requires a certain hook and is a skill not many westerners have) on a similar piece of fabric, and when i knew how to replicate them i'd remove the stained threads and put new ones in their place. of course this would be terribly stressful and difficult.

2, I'd work with matte paint, something without water (acrylic, oil) until i could match the colors. this would have to be done on another piece of black felt. then i'd paint out the stained parts with white, and then repaint with the right colors. sound difficult and/or impossible? probably.

3, I'd look around my house until i found something that needed a beautiful colorful frame. then i'd cut the center out of the hanging to fit the picture (where the damage is). if the damage is on an edge, i'd take an area of perfect stitchery out, and cut a damaged piece out, putting the perfect piece in, matching stitches. you'd have to draw loose ends through to the back so they would not lie on the surface. i have done this numerous times, making repairs to valued clothing as well as decorative embroideries, and this is a good way to make a virtually invisible repair. my description is insufficient to explain clearly, and if you do this, you have to make the Good cut-out piece bigger than the Bad area, so that you have plenty of loose threads to pull toward the back. you also have to make sure that the cut edges are exactly on a place where the thread already goes to the back so that the seam you've created does not lie in the middle of a stitch. you may think that this would not be a problem, but believe me, a few steps away and your mistake will be glaring.

are these remedies possible? well, maybe. if you'd like to talk more, you may email me but i really think that you'd be wise to use the hanging as a pillow sham, cutting away the damaged piece, and keep the extra bits for future patching needs. or - find something with the same colors, and applique it to cover the stain.

all best!!!


Colour run stain
by: Anonymous

I have no idea how long ago your question was posted, and you may have found a solution to your problem already. Sorry if I'm late!

NOT being an expert in the field but just an owner of several wall hanging similar to yours, I can say this: if the dye ran when in contact with water, it should be removable with water, too. However, if you think you may risk making it worse, you could consult someone who knows about dyes and find the right colour, in order to "touch it up" very carefully. I notice it is mainly the white and cream areas that have been affected, so that shouldn't be difficult. In any case, these pieces are rarely clean or completely sound, so if the stain is not too big and you can't manage to eliminate it, just leave it as part of the usual wear-and-tear of the hanging. I don't think it will take off much of its charm!

Good luck,
with kind regards,

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