Monday, January 12, 2009

DIY: de-odorizing furniture OR smoke be gone from my sofa!!!

DIY: de-stinkifying furniture

We purchased a beautiful Queen Anne-style sofa off Craigslist. The sofa was a prefect fit for our living room as I was looking for a charcoal sofa, preferably Queen Anne. So I was elated to come across an ad for a black and cream brocade sofa. The ad said smoking home, but I thought, well, how bad could that be?

Steven went to the little old lady's house to pay her for the sofa on Wednesday and we'd be back to pick up the sofa on Friday. He called me a minute after paying her and said he'd been in the house for 5 minutes and his teeth tasted like smoke.

Rut roh.

We both went on Friday to load up the sofa. Holy moley. The lady had a custom slipcover made for it when she bought it, so the original fabric was in perfect shape. The slipcover used to be white with a shabby chic floral thing happening. It was now corn-tooth yellow except for the part folded under the cushion which was cream.


He got the sofa home and immediately I used the steamcleaner vacuum with the upholstery attachments, filled with extra strength upholstery cleaner. After three passes with that, we doused the thing with about 50 coats of extra strength Fabreeze.

Our sofa was slightly less stinky, but under the Fabreeze smell was eau de ashtray. Gross.
I did some research and discovered a product called “Room Shocker.” Room Shocker is a chlorine dioxide airborne cleaner which is supposed to clean smoke, mildew, pet urine, vomit, mold, you name it. It is eco friendly, and safe for kids, pets and furnishings. I ordered the product hoping for the best.

$25 later, my Room Shocker arrived. It included an insert talking about how the government uses the ingredients to kill off anthrax. Well, if it can kill anthrax, surely it will kill stanky ashtray smell.

We got all set to “bomb” the living room. I tore open the pouch, put water in the cup and placed the cup in front of the sofa. Immediately my living room smelled like a pool party. We let it run through the day and decided to go ahead and let it run the full 24 hours.

The next morning, I went into the living room full of hope. I picked up a pillow and it smelled like.... absolutely nothing! Success! No ash tray smell. No Fabreeze. It didn't smell like anything at all.


niartist said...

Eweeewww! Good thing that worked, I might have to try that for my basement! There is this smell down there that I just can't for the life of me figure out. Hope Jimmy Hoffa's not buried under the concrete! ;) You know, I wonder about that slip cover. I hope you didn't throw it out. That sofa would be FANTASTIC with a soft white slipcover, especially against those chairs. With that rug, corduroy curtains, and the white/gray/blue of the side chairs, I think that could be a GREAT way to brighten that room up in the summer/spring. Then in the fall - dive right back into that black. You could use your old cover for a template, or bleach it out. What are your thoughts?

puck said...

I think Steven tossed the slipcover already. It was nasty nicotine yellow. I am not sure that bleaching would take out a thousand packs of cigarettes.

It had a floral print on it in pink nd red. Very shabby chic and cute... probably is... I have 4 kids. I like the shabby chic Rachel Ashwell look. But all that white, especially her slipcovered chairs, would be stained in no time with my kids.

I have made an important decision about my style, recently. I call it Modern Cottage. Maybe I will post about it. I cannot pass up those pretty, bold prints... yet I love antiques and creamy colors as well...

Hope you weigh in on my living room post. I need serious help on those curtains.

Decorina said...

Hi Puck, visiting you from Decorno.

I think you're right - the cafe curtains would be great. Don't think you'd have to do the tops of the windows, just the lower parts to screen out the people trooping through the yard. My old house had the same issues - I used the cellular blinds.

See if you can find the old brass rods/ends with screw attachment. I still have a couple from my old house. The lady I bought it from in 1985 had Priscilla draperies in the Dining Room bay window that were on those rods. They mount to the wood trim and are beautiful, if pricey these days. They really work with the interior architecture of your lovely home.

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