Arts & Crafts Cleanup

Power through paint stains. Get started by flaking off any dried paint and rinsing the garment in cold water to dilute the paint stains, then soak the item for 30 minutes in a sink or plastic bucket filled with a gallon of water and about two tablespoons of liquid laundry detergent. Wash in warm water with laundry detergent and a stain booster that will help optimize removal of those pesky paint stains.

Tackle gluey situations. Brush off any dried glue residue, or dab the spot with clear tape to remove leftover pieces. Rinse fabric with cold water to dilute any remaining glue, then wash in warm water with liquid detergent.

Make magic markers disappear—really! Position the marker stain facedown on clean paper towels. Use a sponge or cotton ball to dab rubbing alcohol into the area around the mark and then onto the stain directly. Continue applying alcohol, frequently changing or rotating the paper towels underneath as ink is transferred to them. Rinse well and pretreat any remaining stain with liquid detergent for 20 minutes before washing the garment in warm water.

Deconstruct modeling clay. Once the gooey material is completely dry to the touch, gently brush or flake off any debris. Using a plastic bucket, create a soak solution by adding 2 tablespoons of a liquid detergent with color-safe bleach per gallon of cold water. Allow the garment to soak for up to 30 minutes, weighting the item with a white towel to keep it totally submerged, before washing in warm water.

Bye-bye crayon marks. With a dull knife, scrape off any excess wax and brush residue from the garment. Sandwich the stain facedown between several layers of paper towel, then press with a warm (but not hot) iron to transfer the stain to the paper towels. Keep changing paper towels until no more stain lifts away from the fabric. Pretreat any remaining marks with liquid laundry detergent and let sit for 20 minutes before washing in warm water.